DIARY: Crusaders Social and Sunday Ravings

Injury-time has definitely allowed me to let my hair down (or what's left of it anyway). Last weekend saw the company social at Croke Park, yesterday was a the Crusaders Social, which proved once and for all that with the right crowd, and some witty preparations (courtesy of mr. Shane O'Rourke) you can easily outdo an expensive company party with live band in a VIP lounge (not that the company party was bad, the Social was just way better! It had more, to use a clumsy word "authenticity").

The day had started decently, me finally managing to arrive on the Djouce Woods Carpark, only 40 minutes delayed to take up my volunteer task at the Djouce Handicap Race which was won by the first iteration of Dohertys: Brendan only narrowly in front of Shane ...

Highlight of the day was watching Paul Nolan's mountain gear destroy the final ascent to the finish line rushing past Aoife in the process.

The Social was in Doheny and Nesbitt's and there was plenty of good-humoured slagging waiting for us on the walls, most notably "Racebook" profiles of me, Don, and Aoife (I'll see if I can get the files off Shane and post them here).

Then there was the awards part, first the serious once, in which I was delighted (and embarrassed as always when receiving prizes, not that I have gotten that many! In fact the "El Presidente" award in the company, and winning a Ten-Pin Bowling Tournament as a 16-year-old are my only claims to fame!) to win "Best Newcomer" in a close race with Olivia.

Football players often say that the awards they cherish most are the one's voted for by their fellow players, and I can say the same. It's terrific for the club to acknowledge us this way, and when you're injured, as I am now, it's a great boost, showing that all the hard work done during the year hasn't gone unnoticed by the only people who really understand what it's about: your fellow runners (or competitors as Aoife would term them...).

Other awards went to Niamh (a very deserved "Most Improved" for her fight up through the ranks), Aoife who won the "Best Off-Road Performance" with a landslide for her World Trophy Race and general strong performances in the hills (even though she was light-heartedly slagged as being the "79th best hill running woman in the world"), and finally Shane himself for his great performances on the roads this season, most notably his 2:56 marathon.

Spoof Awards!
It didn't end there, though, there was much embarrassment to go around as the less serious awards where handed out, there's really too many to list, but let's just say that Orla will be much more careful in the bushes in the future, Diarmuid may change his running wardrobe, Rachel will think twice about ruining Carrauntoohil, and Don, well Don will just try not to collide with any more cars. (he may also try and avoid Gay bars after marathons, but that appears to be a longer tale...)

As for myself, I can now proudly proclaim myself "Inspector Gadget" after picking up the "Most Technology Dependent Runner" (meaning I'll probably never go down in the annals as one of those mythical wilderland figures such as Joss and Billie!). This earned me a Female Control remote, which I can't wait to use...

We also learned during the evening that top-sprinter Ivan carries around a multiple personality disorder. Good news: They are both quite cheery! Once so more than the other, though!

Thank You
All in all, a great party, good thing we don't do it too often as we'd be out of shape in no time! Thanks for everyone arranging it for a superb evening (and night!)