Archive for May, 2011

Off to See the Wizard – ANW3

Sunday, May 15th, 2011

Who knew he lived in Venice Beach and came in the form of an obstacle course competition?

Leaving right now for the competition.  I’ll have all day on Monday to chill and watch friends and other competitors have their crack at the course, and then Tuesday morning I’ll queue up myself and give it my best.  Just trying to surf the waves of adrenaline that keep coursing through me!

I’ve gotten intel about the course composition.  Their are a few changes from last year, most notably THERE IS NOT SPIDER WALL!  This is what I fell on last year and what I honestly believe prevented me from finishing the course.  I’m glad it isn’t there this year, but I was also looking forward to my shot at redemption.  Something tells me though that the Spider Wall and me aren’t done yet.

Some interesting new obstacles though, and I appreciate their efforts to change the course around a bit while still keeping some of the great elements from last year (and traditional elements).  Here’s the course for the opening round:

#1 – Quadruple Steps (same as last year)

#2 – Log Grip (replaces Rope Swing)

#3 – Bridge of Blades (same as last year)

#4 – Jump Hang to Cargo Net (replaces Spider Wall)

#5 – Horizontal Jumping Bars (modified from last year that were on decline…this year should be harder with the bars flat, and potentially more space between them)

#6 – Warped Wall (same as last year)

Got My Run Slot

Thursday, May 12th, 2011

Just got called.  I’ll be in the 10 am Tuesday group, which means I’ll probably run any time between 10 am and noon if they get backed up.  Last year they had hourly groups of about 15 people, but they got pretty backed up later in the day though.  Go time!

Also just found out that my buddy Ron got the same run slot, meaning we are in the same group.  Which is awesome, because there is a lot of time to kill in that back holding pen while you are waiting for your turn, and having his company there after we’ve traveled this long road over the last few years to get here will be pretty cool.

Got My Invite to Compete in American Ninja Warrior 3

Tuesday, May 10th, 2011

After a long stretch of anxiety wondering whether I’d get an invitation to compete in American Ninja Warrior 3 that’s going down in just 6 short days, I finally got my  invitation today!  I’m ecstatic!  Words can’t express how giddy I am to have gotten my slot to run after so much uncertainty the last few weeks.  Yes, it is just a silly obstacle course competition, but STFU I love it!

I fly out with my good buddy Ron, who also got an invite today, on Sunday afternoon and will bunk down just a half mile from the course at Venice Beach at a cool old art deco hotel (the Cadillac Hotel).  Then Monday and Tuesday will be the opening rounds (I requested a Tuesday run slot but will obviously take whatever they give me), and then the top 30 times from the opening round will advance to the semi-finals on Wednesday.  From the 30 semi-finalists only 15 finalists will advance to the boot camp section to pick out the 10 strongest competitors to go to Ninja Warrior in Japan to compete.  Anyway, just elated to have gotten my golden ticket to compete!

Competition a Week Away, Still Waiting Invite

Monday, May 9th, 2011

With American Ninja Warrior 3 starting in just one week, I’m still waiting on pins and needles for my official invitation.  The semi-finalists from last year, the top 30 times from the opening round, were given automatic invitations to ANW3, but everybody else is still waiting for official word with the competition just one short week away.  A few weeks ago I heard from casting asking me to fill out a 10 page questionnaire and release form that seemed to be a good indication of their interest…last year they only sent the same form AFTER we had been accepted.  But it seems like the bar has been raised for acceptance into ANW3, perhaps because of an increase in applicants, perhaps because they are thinking about ANW’s future as a major network show.

I did get a call last week on Thursday from casting which I had foolishly interpreted as my invitation call.  Earlier that week several of my friends in the competitor community had gotten calls with their official invite, so when they called me I assumed the same.  We had a 10 minute conversation during which the very nice lady from casting asked me more profile questions.  I was happy and chatty during the call, thinking I had my invitation wrapped up.  It was only at the end of the call that I realized I hadn’t.

Her:  “OK, we’ll let you know next week.”

Me:  “Let me know what?  My run time?”

Her:  “Noooo….I’m sorry….whether you will be invited or not.”

Me:  “Doh!”

She felt badly that I had misinterpreted the purpose of the call as an invitation as opposed to just a chat to get more information from me, and perhaps hear whether I was charismatic or not in a conversation.  She assured me that the call “was a good thing” and they’d only be talking to me further at this point if they were interested, but I still left the call with a lot of trepidation about whether I’d be invited or not.

I’ve subsequently learned that a lot of other competitors have been getting this “additional profiling” chat, more than those that have received an actual invite, so I have a lot of company in this awkward situation of not knowing whether I’m going to get a chance to compete in American Ninja Warrior 3 that starts in just one short week.  I’m sitting here by my phone with my fingers crossed hoping I hear from them…the suspense is killing me!  I feel very prepared for this competition and have all my travel arrangements, hopefully it won’t all be for naught.