Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Books, that kamikaze hurdler, and a cricketing finger

Roving reporter hardworking Jenny Oldland from our local weekly rag - OK, it covers the whole Yorke Peninsula which is, after all, one eighth the size of Italy and nearly the same shape - was here at my place today. She took pix of me (I'd put on a clean shirt even) with a sort of display of the six books I've recently authored on CreateSpace.com. The books are now on sale at Amazon.com.

We're half-promised a 600-word article to appear on 5 January. Saluting the New Year with this incredible breaking news??  Not really. It's just a traditionally slow week. But not to worry.

Meanwhile you could try sticking in my name as Will Smyth in the Amazon book title/author search panel - or even the gender-bending pen-name Kimberly Hansel. The latter will get you to my two books on FOOD. The former will bring up a miscellany of three others. Tell you more soon.
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Remember that hustling hurdler in the last video? First posted on 17 December, I believe, it has gone viral as they say. It has around a million views. Maybe more. No-one seems to know exactly WHERE  the athletics meet was, somewhere in regional China. This was NOT an elite international event. The comment posted in Chinese characters with the vid which I embedded on this blog was in the characters used in Taiwan, and it was a comment - not info on the event (so far as my minimalist Chinese suggests). Across the web the range of viewer-comments covers the spectrum from the standard obscene and stupid, through the merely amused, right on to many from thoughtful observers impressed by the hurdle-busting runner's sheer determination and disregard for the hitherto sacred conventions of track athletics. A kind of Zen kamikaze approach.

It's actually not against the rules to knock over a hurdle. Running straight through ... well, THAT might fit the analogy of bodyline bowling in cricket, from another era. However, encroaching on another runner's lane and interfering - that's definitely agin the rules. Commentators were incredulous that nobody seemed much upset by the whole bizarre process. That might be a skewed impression simply from the shortness of the video clip; or could be it's a Chinese thing. All very interesting. And funny to watch.

Speaking of cricket, the Oz team got up to level the Ashes series at the cost of a Ricky Ponting cracked little finger. Two matches to go, starting on Boxing Day. Too bad: we'll all be watching the Sydney-Hobart Yacht Race. No other major world news is permitted.

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