Team 40, with the author at left, kitted out for night racing. Photo: Audrey Brandt.
By Elizabeth Eilers Sullivan
Why run 198 miles in a single weekend?
When it comes to passing on the love of sport to your kids, it’s hard to trump leading by example. So when my Saturday running group started talking about doing the Ragnar Relay Great River Race (GRRR) in Minnesota and Wisconsin in mid-August, before I could shut my mouth, the words, “Sounds like fun! I’ll do it,” were out. Almost immediately, I began second guessing my rash decision. I’d just returned to running after the birth of my fourth son, and I wondered if I’d be up to the challenge of leaving him for a whole weekend, not to mention running 17.5 miles over the course of 36 hours with little to no good sleep and eating so-so food on the fly. (Which, when you think of it, is not much different than parenting a newborn.)
The Amgen Tour of California has released details of its 2013 course, and for the first time in its eight year history the race will follow a south-to-north route through the state. Not only will the direction be different than in years past, but every stage is also brand new.
"Taking the Amgen Tour of California (ATOC) from south to north is something we always knew we wanted to do, and we are thrilled with the way things have come together for 2013," said Kristin Bachochin, executive director of the race. "We think this will bring a whole new element to the competition, not to mention helping us achieve our goal of creating a challenging route year after year while showcasing the very best this state has to offer."
Here is the good news: Expanded polystyrene (a.k.a.
EPS, or the branded name Styrofoam) is recyclable. Here's the bad news: much of
it is not recycled and therefore EPS-based surfboards are made from
virgin EPS. Some more bad news: Only about 30 percent of surfboards are made with EPS. One more piece of bad news: The most commonly used resins* used in surfboard
manufacturing are toxic. Sustainable Surf, a non-profit aimed at helping the
surf industry reduce its environmental impact, is hoping to change all of that bad news.
The NGO celebrated the launch of its Ecoboard
program, which finally established an industry
benchmark that board makers can follow in order to boost the environmental
credibility of their products, last week in San Francisco. "Ecoboard is the industry's first
third-party science-based benchmark," Sustainable Surf's co-founder Michael
Stewart told me.
Stewart is a life-long surfer, and he looks
like one. But he's also all business, which becomes apparent as he starts to
talk shop, rattling off the attributes of recycled EPS and the potential
of using bio-based epoxy for glassing a surfboard instead of using polyester resins. The majority of surfboards on the market today are manufactured with polyurethane foam cores, which can be recycled but aren't in any meaningful quantity, and these boards are made with polyester epoxies.
Prior to launching Sustainable Surf, Stewart worked
at Underwriters Laboratories, a standards-setting organization serving the
electronics industry. He knows from standards. And he's quick to point out that
Sustainable Surf is still a long way from developing a sustainability standard
for the surf industry—doing so will be major undertaking. "We're going
to build a standard," he says. "But first it's a [bench]mark."
This year's Red Bull Rampage may have been overshadowed by Felix Baumgartner's record-breaking free fall, but the fact that it takes a 128,098-foot sky dive to upstage this event should tell you just how severe downhill mountain biking has become. This invitation-only event sees 25 of the world's top mountain bikers riding some unimaginably scary lines on a cliffside outside of Zion, Utah. Canadian Kurt Sorge, 23, took his first-ever title at this year's competition.
New York, New Jersey, and Maryland are already flooded. Sandy is coming and doesn't look like it'll be another over-hyped New York-centric storm. Record storm surge is expected. Emergency declarations have been signed. Presidential campaigns have been suspended. (Oh God.) And the worst appears yet to come. We'll be covering it all—and we won't be sending you fake storm porn. We promise.
Check back throughout the day for the latest. Most recent updates will be at the top.
8:00 p.m.: This is a time lapse of before, during, and after Sandy, as it hits lower Manhattan and the Brooklyn Bridge. Watch it.
3:00 p.m.: Bloomberg briefing briefing: Basically, only cars containing thre or more people will be allowed in and out of Manhattan. Around 634,000 people in NYC still without power. Approximately 7,300 people in evacuation shelters. No deaths during hospital evacitations. An unnamed person donated $2.5 million to the city for relief. NYC schools closed through end of the week. Knicks-Nets cancelled by NBA. NYC Marathon on Sunday still a go.
5:38 p.m.: Over the past day, reports of looting—fron Queens to Brooklyn—have begun popping up. Fifteen people were arrested in Far Rockaway, Queens—one of the hardest-hit areas and where search-and-rescue crews are currently working—for looting a Radioshack, a liquor store, and other businesses. The NYPD has denied some of the looting-reports, and let's hope this is the last we hear about it.
12:47 p.m.: Breezy Point, as we've noted, was devistated by the storm after a fire destroyed over 100 houses. This is the most-harrowing photo (via Gawker) I've seen of Sandy's aftermath. Somehow and thankfully, no one was injured.
6:08 p.m.: More Bloomberg: "There were too many generators in Zone A." Wonders why only half of those ordered to evacuate actually did. "We don't order people to leave lightly, it's for their own good." The block with the hanging crane is off limits. He isn't sure if the Knicks-Nets season opener in Brooklyn on Thursday will happen, but he plans to be there if they play. "We are on the road to recovery."
5:56 p.m.: Latest Bllomberg presser: Confirms there have been 18 deaths in NYC. Bus fares are currently and temporarily free. Trading will resume at the Stock Exchange at 9:30 a.m. EST tomorrow. Coney Island hospital is being evacuated, all others remain open. All city parks are closed. City sanitation will resume tonight, but no recycling until further notice. Criminal courts will remain closed except for emergencies. "We encourage children and adults to enjoy Halloween but use good judgement." The NYC Marathon will "go on as normal, as of now."
5:18 p.m.: The MTA just released some pretty stunning footage of the flooded subway stations near the southern tip of Manhattan:
4:24 p.m.: Little was said about New York's Riker's Island prison last night, admist all the chaos on the Jersey Shore, in Manhattan, and everywhere else, but it was there, filled with 12,000 human beings, sitting in the middle of a record storm surge. However, according to Solitary Watch, things appear to be OK:
Solitary Watch has
received the following statement via email from NYC DOC Deputy Commissioner
Matthew Nerzig: “No power outages on Rikers last night. No significant flooding
or disruption of our operations. The Commissioner [DOC Commissioner Dora
Schriro] spent the night there.”
4:18 p.m.: From the National Guard, here's a helicopter view of the extensive damage along the Jersey Shore:
11:37 a.m.: President Obama has cancelled all scheduled campaign events for tomorrow and will remain in Washington to deal with Sandy's aftermath.
11:18 a.m.: Even more Bloomberg: No first responders were lost. Thinks ConEd and the subways could be up and running in three to four days, but would be happy if that's the case. Believes they responded to all emergncy requests. Expects no more flooding and isn't worried about the nuclear reactor. City water is safe to drink.
11:12 a.m.: More Bloomberg: Cabs now allowed to pick up more than one passenger. NYC schools closed tomorrow. "We expected a storm with unprecedented impact in New York City, and that's what we got."
11:06 a.m.: Mayor Bloomberg is giving a press conference: More 80 houses believed to have been destroyed. Ten people in NYC are dead, expects number to climb. Biggest challenges are getting mass transit and electricity back up. 750,000 without power. Power could be out in some spots for two-to-three more days, if not longer. Subways are down indefinitely, but limited bus service could resume later today.
11:01 a.m.: A boat on the train tracks in Westchester, New York:
12:00 p.m.: Looks like the storm surge is dying down and the most-intense phase has passed. But people are still being evacuated from storm-hit towns, and hospitals are still running on limited generator power. There's still a ton of water in the streets. Plus, all of the problems that come with abolutely massive power outages. So, be safe and stay inside tonight. We'll see you in the morning when the sun comes back out.
An Alert is the second lowest
of four NRC action levels. The Alert was preceded by an Unusual Event,
declared at approximately 7 p.m. EDT when the water level first reached a minimum
high water level criteria. Water level is rising in the intake structure due to
a combination of a rising tide, wind direction and storm surge. It is
anticipated water levels will begin to abate within the next several hours.
9:46 p.m.: ConEd power station on 14th Street and Avenue D—lower, eastern Manhattan—explodes:
9:41 p.m.: Video of the building collapse from earlier:
9:35 p.m.: The Hoboken PATH station—trains from Manhattan to Jersey—is flooded. I took this train every weekday for summer and you probably don't care but whatever. Just look at this. (Via Mocksession)
9:31 p.m.: Not all of Manhattan is dark. Stunning photo from The Times.
9:16 p.m.: High tide is here:
We have reached scheduled high tide in lower manhattan, water level is still rising. will probably be another 1-2hrs before signif lowering.
9:11 p.m.: Bad news—well, this is all bad news—but the subways are starting to flood. Salt water will ruin switches and etc. Don't expect the subways to be running for a while. Manhattan without the subway is chaos—but that seems, and is, totally unimportant right now.
9:09 p.m.: Looks like ice and snow in Virginia:
From Virginia DOT RT @vadot: Highland County is having problems with snow and ice on the roads - please use extreme caution. #Sandy
7:22 p.m.: The National Hurricane Center has downgraded the storm to "post-tropical." The Weather Channel is now referring to it as "Superstorm Sandy." Winds are currently as high as 85 miles per hour.
7:20 p.m.: Power outage update:
BREAKING NEWS: Over 2.2 million outages in 11 states and Washington, DC from the impacts of now #SuperstormSandy
6:07 p.m.: Mayor Bloomberg speaks. Summary: He's issued summonses to people who've tried to surf. Tells residents to watch out for trees with leaves, stay out of elevators. Public transportation to remain closed through all of tomorrow. Storm surge expected around 8:15 tonight. Sanitation crews are scheduled to begin work tomorrow morning at 9. No fatalities so far—one jogger was injured. "Try to relax and spend the night in." (Also: Bloomberg's ASL translator is the best.) (Also also: follow @ElBloombito for Spanish-language Sandy updates.)
3:06 p.m.: If you are a person-who-is-stranded-inside-because-of-Sandy-but-still-has-electricity-and-also-has-Netflix, The Awl is here for you with some recommendations. Bonus recommendation: There is this Norweigan death metal documentary on Netflix. Watch something that isn't that.
3:00 p.m.: More flooding from Long Island. This is in West Babylon, and that fence has since disappeared.
2:54 p.m.: Welp, looks like the crane already crashed down. STAY INSIDE PLEASE.
New York Fire Department: Boom of a crane collapsed on 57th Ave between 6th and 7th Avenues; no injuries reported - @nbcnews
AT 200 PM EDT...1800
UTC...THE CENTER OF HURRICANE SANDY WAS LOCATED BY AN AIR FORCE RESERVE
HURRICANE HUNTER AIRCRAFT AND NOAA DOPPLER WEATHER RADARS TO BE NEAR LATITUDE
38.3 NORTH...LONGITUDE 73.1 WEST. SANDY
IS NOW MOVING TOWARD THE NORTHWEST NEAR 28 MPH... 44 KM/H. THIS GENERAL MOTION
IS EXPECTED TO CONTINUE THROUGH THIS AFTERNOON AND EVENING UNTIL LANDFALL
OCCURS...FOLLOWED BY A TURN TOWARD THE WEST-NORTHWEST TONIGHT. ON THE FORECAST
TRACK...THE CENTER OF SANDY IS EXPECTED TO MAKE LANDFALL ALONG OR JUST SOUTH OF
THE SOUTHERN NEW JERSEY COAST BY EARLY EVENING.