Our 2012 Monaco Grand Prix meal

So Formula 1 visited Monaco on the weekend which allowed us to research and eat all things Monegasque. We learned that Monaco is a tiny country, less than 2 square kilometers making it about as big as our little suburb and just large enough to host a race track. Most workers come from neighbouring France and Italy, and so their cuisine is mostly of French and Italian influence. We went with a platter of exotic cheeses, meats, breads and dips plus some caviar. Perhaps what you’d expect to serve on your luxury yacht before hitting the casinos. We had this while watching the Eagles give the Dockers a lesson at Subiaco, as the race was a little late for the kids to stay up and watch.

Monegasque cuisine, in a pinchMark Webber was on pole, and raced perfectly to lead a train of 6 other contenders across the line for his first win of 2012. In doing so, he’s the sixth winner from the first six races which is something that hasn’t happened before. It gave him a bag of points and puts him right into contention for 2012, only a few points down on current leader Alonso.

Next up is the Grand Prix du Canada for which I plan on Poutine, a very evil but tasty dish.

How to not post a Facebook status

I’ve been hitting the gym, lately. Our new offices are in a residential high rise building with a pool, a spa and a small gym. There’s a few different machines there, but I’m old-school and mostly stick to the dumbbells and the inclined bench, along with the bike to warm up and warm down. I’ve been working out during my lunch breaks in an effort to get a bit healthier and to lose my big fat gut that’s been developing over the last couple years. I’m half expecting to give birth to an alien chest burster one of these days.

Anyhow, last Friday I decided to blast my calves by performing Standing Calf Raises, where you find a small step or around two inches, place your toes on that step and then raise the rest of your body up that step using only your calves. I remember from my younger days that I had really good calves and could do Standing Calf Raises while carrying 90kg on my shoulders. No other muscle group was ever quite as strong as my calves. I was proud of my calves.

So, remembering this, and remembering that I’m a old, fat, unfit, baldy bastard I decided to take it easy and gently ease into my calf routine. I settled on picking up 15kg dumbbells in each hand for a total of 30kg extra weight while making sure to warm them up, stretch them out and cool the down afterwards. I blasted away at them for 20 mins or so and felt pretty good about it after I’d hit the showers.

The next day I was a little sore all over as you’d expect, but Sunday was torture. In fact for the better part of a week it felt like my calves were 3 inches shorter than they should be and just would’t stretch out enough to allow me to walk. Standing was painful, and I hobbled around like an old man for a few days.

But it was around Wednesday when a friend of mine spotted me at the train station waiting for the train home, headphones on and eyes closed. I was most likely listening to Echoes by Pink Floyd trying to dull the slow throb I was experiencing after forcing my legs to carry me the few blocks from my office to the train station.

I felt an intense flash of pain shoot down my leg from the back of my knee all the way to my heel. I thought someone had taken a flying Karate side kick at my calves, but it turned out I’d only been lightly poked behind the knee in an attempt to unbalance me. I squealed in pain, and half the people on the platform stared at me. I was quite embarrassed.

And now we get to the point of the story. I scolded my friend who, to be fair, didn’t know the ordeal I’d been going through. But then I thought to myself “I’ll show you. Wait until I tell the Internet about this”. I got onto my phone and posted this:

It wasn’t until I’d pressed “save” that I paused and thought to myself that I could have worded it a little better. I mean on the face of it, this looks pretty serious right?

I swear it was about 15 seconds later that my phone started ringing. It was the Imperial March from Star Wars, the one I use for Suzanne’s incoming calls. It was then that I knew that it was a poor choice of words for a status update, and I should have known that Suzanne would read it straight away since she’s always on Facebook. I got chewed out, and dreaded going home because I knew I’d get a bollicking late into the night.

A couple people also Tweeted at me, asking if I was alright. HTC Sense also posts to twitter, conveniently, and it seems Suzanne wasn’t the only one concerned for my welfare. I was able to pull the Tweet easily enough after explaining that it was a joke gone wrong, but I had to wait until I got home to delete it from Facebook.

At one point I thought of adding an update along the lines of “I got assaulted at home. No security around to help me”, but thought better of it. I guess the lesson here is that I need to think more clearly about what I post. Even though I post joke statuses for a living, it might not be that funny sometimes.

Our 2012 Spanish Grand Prix meal

So, last night I made Paella for dinner as part of our 2012 Taste of the Race.There’s different types of Paella with the most popular being seafood. But we went for a pretty generic mix with a bit of everything: chirozo sausage, chicken and prawns cooked into onion, red and green capsicum (for some great colours), tomato and rice. It tasted great, and what’s more the kids really liked it. When I say I made it, Suzanne helped a little bit. It wasn’t all that difficult, but Suzanne managed to slice through the middle of her fingernail when chopping the capsicum.

Home made Paella

The race itself was an interesting affair. Pastor Maldonado, of all people, had managed pole position for Williams after Lewis Hamilton got sent to the back of the field for not having enough fuel left in the tank for sampling after qualifying first by a good 5 tenths. That pretty much cost him the race.

To Maldonado’s credit, he put in a mature race for someone who hasn’t shown a lot of maturity in the last season or so. But by the first corner he’d given up the lead to local hero Alonso in the Ferrari. Despite this, Williams were calling the shots in the race and timed their pit stop to perfection to give Maldonado plenty of clean air. He put in the outlap of his life to undercut Ferrari who had to re-actively pit Alonso and put him behind some unwanted traffic and more importantly behind Maldonado. I’m not too keen on passing in the pits. I’d rather see on-track passing but watching the strategy unfold successfully was intriguing.

Maldonado held on from a desperate Alonso charge late in the race. Unfortunately Alonso suffered from being behind traffic and his tires dropped off a couple laps too soon. Good win to Williams and Maldonado in the end, for the fifth different winner and the fifth different constructor to win from the first five races.

Maldonardo wins 2012 Spanish F1 Grand Prix