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Dec 3, 2008

Paddler Spotlight - Mary & Jason



Hometown?
Mary: Killeen, TX (army brat)
Jason: Chewelah, WA…little farm town in the Rockies

How long have you been paddling for?

Mary:
a little over a year now
Jason:
Almost a year

Why do you paddle?

Mary:
I thought it would be a fun way to workout on the weekends, but it's also fun getting to know the people on the team and competing in tourneys.
Jason: At first for the exercise, now for the SD family. Love you guys!

Favorite or notable Space Dragon moment(s)?

Mary:
Winning a medal in San Francisco!!
Jason:
My first blind paddle. I was just starting to get the stroke technique down, so that I didn’t have to consciously think about. One morning Wade called for a blind paddle. That moment everything came down to the sound of the paddles and the movement of the boat, a profound sense of emptiness and simple purpose flooded into me. Since then, that feeling is in my mind every time I paddle. A close second would be swimming in SF bay.

How do you prepare yourself for a Race?
Mary: I mostly prepare mentally because I'm the worst at getting to bed early before a competition, I get too excited and I'm not disciplined enough to eat healthy.
Jason:
1 hour before, eat some fast digesting carbs, then 10 minutes before something high in sugar. Then just prior to the race a little stretching and some cardio movements…mostly bouncing like a fool

Any hobbies, activities, interests outside of paddling?

Mary:
reading, cycling, bowling, volleyball, SHOPPING!!
Jason:
Tall Ship Sailing, Triathlon, live music, hurting my fellow Space Dragons with death hikes and death bike rides, girls. Not in that order.

Favorite Food(s)?

Mary:
I love Korean food, but I don't get to eat it as often as I'd like and I love pizza, I could eat both everyday :-)
Jason:
Tough one, especially since you guys keep introducing me to new foods…currently Tom Ka Gai soup, I could live on the stuff! And dark chocolate!

Any advise for new Paddlers?

Mary:
Most importantly, listen to the coaches, they are the best!! The other thing is, try not to miss too many practices because when you come back from a hiatus you will be SORE!
Jason: Listen to the coaches(even Lil Joe). Work through the pain and fatigue, it’s good for your soul and you will progress faster.

Paddling-wise, any particular goals for yourself or the team?

Mary:
Always strive to be better, there's always room for improvement.
Jason: Improve my technique; I have a long ways to go. Also, to compete in as many tournaments as possible this year.

Are you a better Paddler when you are Happy or Angry?

Mary:
Happy - I've never been angry when I'm paddling because it makes me happy.
Jason:
I like being happy when I paddle, however, when Portland was right next too us in SF, I was totally pissed off and I paddle harder than ever! So I guess I’m better angry.

Favorite part about being a Space Dragon?

Mary:
Competing and celebrating as a team whether we win or lose.
Jason:
The family. There are so many awesome, warm, caring people on this team it feels great to be part of it.

You have a single brother or sister. What Space Dragon would you consider hooking them up with?

Mary:
Hmm, Wade he's a cutie (and my mom thinks so too!!)
Jason:
Tough question. If I had a single brother, probably Tran, but I would be concerned about his personal safety. A single sister would be too much for any guys on this team to handle, Hafer girls are pretty wild.

Most interesting character you've met through the team?

Mary:
I don't know if I can choose one person as the most interesting because everyone I've talked to and gotten to know is interesting to me in their own way.
Jason:
Pearl, every time I think I have her figured out, I see a different part of her personality. Still waters run deep.

If you could change one thing about the Team, what would it be?
Mary:
I honestly can't think of anything I would change - we're a great team, on and off the water.
Jason:
Bigger team! Get out there and recruit! We got a lotta Space Dragon love to share.

Any interesting facts about yourself - or secrets that you want to divulge?

Mary:
I have a black belt in ... KEEPING IT REAL!! OK really I have a yellow belt in ChaYon-Ryu - the natural way Martial Arts (www.kimsookarate.com). Also, my mom used to make some of our clothes when we were kids, so my sisters and I would always have coordinating or matching outfits - the Annie look-a-like dress was my favorite!!
Jason:
Difficult, I could tell you guys about my years living in a monastery, but that would raise too many follow up questions. How about this? I absolutely love musicals, mani-pedis, spa days, and anything that can be done sans clothing. Um…maybe I’ve said too much…