Ming-Jou: Torrance, Ca. Live n die.
John: For the past 15 or so years, I've lived in Irvine, CA.
How long have you been paddling for?
Ming-Jou: Since April 2008. The best 8 months of my life :)
John: I first started with UCI at the end of 2004, took a year off it when I graduated from college in 2006 and joined up w/ SD late summer of 2007.
Why do you paddle?
Ming-Jou: 1) I have no upper body strength. My routine for packing carry-on luggage is to lift it over my head at home so that I can test my weight max capacity. Because chivalry is dead! Paddling has helped me increase the amount of luggage I can take with me on biz trips.
2) Wanted to meet new people and now I have a whole family that's all kinds of awesome.
3) I'm Chinese, it's the sport of my people.
4) I was born year of the Dragon.
5) Um, for all the H-O-T guys? Hello?
John: I love this sport, this team, and I'd feel like a pansy if I stopped. =p
Favorite or notable Space Dragon moment(s)?
Ming-Jou: Favorite: All the fun at the holiday party. Notable/Traumatizing: Watching Galen and Brendan touch body parts in SF.
John: Feeling the love after every single race when we've left everything at the race and we all start anticipating the next step with no pressure.
How do you prepare yourself for a Race?
Ming-Jou: Usually by staying up really late and running on adrenalin and 2 hours of sleep.
John: I control what I eat, I go easy on work-outs and just take it easy in general. Make sure I get enough sleep so I don't get sick, and abstain from naughtiness. The couple days before a race, at least at Long Beach I like to retreat into a reclusive shell to increase mental focus.
Any hobbies, activities, interests outside of paddling?
Ming-Jou: Cars, motorcycles, eating, reading, running, tennis, hiking, buying gadgets beyond my means.
John: I like making food, music, and playing video games.. although i haven't been doing so much of that lately... =\
Ming-Jou: I eat it all. I especially love mom's ketchup fried rice with an omelet on top. Then she draws a happy face on there with ketchup.
John: I'm going through an obsession with Vietnamese food and Korean food, but I love all food. As long as there are no BAD surprises, it's all good!
Any advice for new Paddlers?
Ming-Jou: It's okay to be tired when you first start. When I first started paddling, I didn't think I was in terrible shape, since I work out everyday, but paddling WORKS you in all these foreign parts of your body. I used to come home from practice for the first few weeks and just veg in front of the couch cat-napping the rest of the day.
John: be ready to get wet, it takes some time to get used to the motion, you'll definitely get at least what you put in =)
Paddling-wise, any particular goals for yourself or the team?
Ming-Jou: Would love to win more medals for 2009! But it's just great to see everyone motivate each other and keep each other strong, whether in practice or competition.
John: i want to feel our boat hit terminal speed and sustain it for an entire heat
Are you a better Paddler when you are Happy or Angry?
Ming-Jou: Definitely when I'm happy. When I'm angry, I'm just angry. Argh.
John: before big LB '07 I would've said angry, but lately I'm thinking I paddle better when I'm emotionless, completely empty headed and thinking only about the next few strokes
Favorite part about being a Space Dragon?
Ming-Jou: The cool blue team color. And all the cool people.
John: I love that we love to have fun, don't take ourselves so seriously... well... most of us anyway ;p, but at the same time we're super competitive.
You have a single brother or sister. What Space Dragon would you consider hooking them up with?
Ming-Jou: Don't believe in dipping one's pen (or sibling's pen) in the company ink. Or boat.
John: uhh... awkward... she's not single anymore, but... why don't you ask her? my standards for accepting a sibling's SO are ridiculous. it's an unpleasant subject for me and i ignore it most of the time =p
Most interesting character you've met through the team?
Ming-Jou: They're ALL interesting.
John: david knight always has something funny/interesting to say, and never seems to be short of something surprising to pull out of his past.
If you could change one thing about the Team, what would it be?
Ming-Jou: I don't necessarily want to change anything, I'd rather things not change in the sense that with all these wins and us hopefully moving up the ranks in terms of competitors, I hope the essence of the team stays the same. That everyone's in it to have fun, to do their best and to support one another, no matter what happens. That's what I saw when I first joined and why I've stayed on.
John: not so much about the team, but i wish we didn't have to work, so we could paddle more frequently =)... i also wish we didn't all live so far away from each other =p
Any interesting facts about yourself - or secrets that you want to divulge?
Ming-Jou: I once owned a 1969 Porsche 912 as a project car, but it was too expensive to maintain.
John: i think i'm a pretty 'what you see is what you get' kinda guy, not too much to divulge ;-)