So if you have any inkling by now of who I am (from reading my blogs, of course!), then you know that crew is a major part of my life. At times, it feels like I’m married to the sport—or at least the cox’s seat! In Part II of my amazing experiences here at the Academy, crew stands out above all the rest.
In my Leadership and Organizational Behavior (think Leadership Psychology) class, we discussed identity. Needless to say, I strongly identify with the crew “cult.” My best friends row; the team does everything as a team; we all eat, sleep, and dream crew, especially over break. For me, two things stand out in my crew experiences: racing and spring break.
First, racing. If you’ve read my blogs before, you’ve probably read about my races. They give me such an adrenaline rush. I always get nauseated before getting hands-on to carry the boat down to the racecourse, but once we get on the water…BAM! I’m in the zone! Nothing can stop me, once I sit in the cox’s seat, I change (like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde) from a nice, mild-mannered, pleasant person into a demanding, aggressive animal. Like any other normal person, I love winning. There are times when I wonder what could possibly come between my boat and winning. (Of course, obvious safety concerns like a sinking boat or a collision will cause me to stop. However, not much else will…) In the past year, it has been amazing to see the change I’ve undergone. My teammates and others have noticed my increased self-confidence and assertiveness, both on and off the water. People like 3/c Alex Kloo, 3/c Sean Murphy, and 3/c Luke Carani (all cadet bloggers, by the way) picked up on calling me “Sassquatch,” which I don’t think does me justice. Just because I say something decisively does not make it sassy, guys! But that is a fight for me to win with my boat…tomorrow, at practice.
Even better than racing is SPRING BREAK! Last week, we all traveled to Deland, Florida for a week of two-a-day practices—and fun. We rowed on (well, okay, I was rowed around) Lake Beresford, where the warm sunshine and flat water helped us iron out the technical kinks we had, so we can row the fastest boat possible. We practiced early in the morning, rowing into the sunrise, then returned to the hotel to shower, eat, and nap before repeating it again in the afternoon. During practice one day, I saw two alligators and a manatee! After dinner, most of us would hang out on the pool deck or the balcony, reading, talking, and joking with our best friends. I wish that I could do more than just write about it: my words don’t do it justice! The best part of the week for me was our scrimmage on Friday afternoon against Temple University and Jacksonville University, two D-I schools. In our second race against them, we held with both boats and at one point had “seats” (we were ahead by a certain number of seats) until about the 1300-meter mark. It was great to see just how competitive we were—it’s a great sign for the spring season. Be sure to check out some of the photos that link to my blog. I’m going to try to put some of the best photos from Spring Break up.
I’m hoping to compete with the Varsity Eight this spring; however, to get there, it’ll be super competitive. In addition to that, I am also juggling an academic overload, planning for the 3/c formal, and a million other things. As always, I’d love to hear questions or concerns, because I get distracted easily. Email me at Peter.M.Driscoll@uscga.edu if you want to talk about America’s best school!
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