Monday, November 24, 2008
The Golden Goggle Awards
Last Monday I went to the Golden Goggle Awards at the Hilton on 6th Avenue. I was with Ana, just hanging out and having a cocktail when I realized that we were literally at the Golden Goggles (I hadn't bothered to even look at the name of the event - I'm occasionally "event jaded"!), the awards for the best swimmers in the United States.
Bob Costas was the evening's host and various celebs present awards to the greatest swimmers for their (especially this year) Olympic achievments. Every Olympic name was there, Phelps, Torres, Lochte, Lezak, Piersol, Hansis, Jones, on and on and on...it was an amazing night to hang out with my swimming heroes, the people we all just got behind this summer and watched rock the Water Cube in Beijing. Bob Costas was a great host and the night was exciting enough, sitting at a dinner table surrounded by swimmers everywhere. Michael Phelps brought his mom and sisters, Jason Lezak, his wife and Ryan Lochte was of course without a date - I think he may be single...
The crazy thing is that the former president of Indiana University (Bloomington), Myles Brand - he was prez during my years at IU and is most famous for his firing of Bobby Knight while I was there - was seated at my dinner table. Well really, I was seated at his. Brand has been the NCAA president for five years and was being honored for all of his work in collegiate athletics. It was so exciting to see him again and actually speak to him all these years after I graduated. IU is a school with approx 40,000 undergrad, so until Monday night I had never spoken to him before. It was surreal. We talked about my column, Barack wanting a college football championship and even the Bobby Knight days. It was one of those full circle moments you rarely get in life.