Monday, March 25, 2013

Pirates, Frozen T-Shirts & Shakira

So, remember in my last post when I said that Neptune Day was my favorite day on the ship? Well, I lied. If you are ever on Semester at Sea, just be prepared by the Sea Olympics because it is so much fun!! Each hall is assigned a sea and given a color. My hall was the Caribbean Sea and we were black. Our RD Kindra selected 2 people to be our Sea Captains, and Cassie (my roomie) was one of them. There are multiple events which include a dodge ball tournament, ship-wave-captain (equivalent to rock-paper-scissors) ping pong, pull-up competition, tug of war, hula hooping, knock out, eastern toilet squat, synchronized swimming, and a ship-wide relay. The Olympics was an all-day event, and some activities happened simultaneously.

The night before the games, we had the opening ceremonies where each team showed their flag and came up with a cheer. Because we were the Caribbean Sea and we were black, we obviously took on the mascot of a pirate and were the Pirates of the Caribbean. About two hours before the ceremonies, Dana, Anna, Cassie, Sawyer, Bailey and I started on our flag. Even though it took us less than 30 minutes, it ended up looking pretty good if you ask me. 

We put more effort into our cheer, and practiced it the few nights leading up to the ceremony. If you know about Rugby, the All Blacks start each game with the Hakka (basically a lot of intimidating chanting, chest hitting and sticking out your tongue) Since we were black, it seemed fitting. The girls came into the Union first, chanting “The Caribbean storm is about to break” getting louder as we walked down the aisle. Because every other team had something more like cheerleading than intimidating rugby chants, they were really surprised. After we finished our chant, we dropped to the ground and the boys came out, doing a more traditional Hakka (with the chest hitting and tongues) It was AWESOME! Unfortunately, we came in second for both the flag and the cheer, but we were #1 overall because we had the highest total score. We all went to bed pumped for the next morning. 

The A-Team: David, Anna, Cody, Cassie, & Cameron

Kindra reserved a classroom for our team breakfast where we could get pumped, go over the schedule and get face paint. After breakfast, we had about an hour before the games started, so Dana and I roamed the ship and scoped out all of the events since ours weren’t until later. Dodgeball was the first of the day and our team was awesome. We dominated 4 of the 5 games, and medaled 2nd place to the Red Sea (our biggest competitor all day!) 

After Dodgeball, we went to the pull-up competition and Dana and I scored front row seats ;) The most impressive competitor was Ed Sobey, the 65 year old marine bio teacher who is an ex-Marine. He managed 23 pull-ups, and even though he was on the opposing team, every student was cheering him on. Next was my first event of the day- Frozen t-shirt!! Basically, an XL t-shirt was frozen in a zip-block bag of water. Each team had 4 people who could use only body heat to melt the ice as fast as they could and put the shirt on. It was a miserable 26 minutes of rubbing a block of ice on every inch of my body. We took turns heating our backs and stomachs in the sun while the other three would melt the block. We came in second, yet again, to the Persian Gulf (Raj’s team!) by only a few seconds though. 

Getting Creative with the Ice

I was miserably cold and my clothes were wet when we finished, but there were more events to watch and no time to change! Next, we went to stand-up comedy. We nominated the two brits- Ed and Hue- to do a routine. They ended up dressing up like hipsters and telling one-liners as if we were in a coffee house. After each joke, everyone from the Caribbean sea in the audience would snap to add the effect. The boys were great and took home gold for the sea! After, we had tug of war which I was also in. Again, we made it pretty far in the competition, but ended up getting third (losing to Amanda and Kayla!) Throughout the day, Dana and I kept running back to the main scoreboard in Tymitz Square. After the dodge ball/eastern toilet squat/ping-pong time slot ended, we were in 6th, but by the time we were ready to start the ship wide relay, we had racked up enough points to pull into second (just behind the Red Sea) The relay consisted of:

1.       Someone eating 6 saltine crackers and then whistling in the Union (we came in first thanks to Cody and got an early lead!)
2.       Shooting a layup on the basketball court
3.       Completing a Soduko puzzle
4.       Two people making a PB+J and feeding it to someone else
5.       Completing a word search
6.       Leapfrog
7.       2 story house of cards
8.       Over-under game with a ball
9.       Dizzy bat
10.   Push ups
11.   Passing an orange down the line with no hands
12.   Eating a donut off a string
13.   Shaking two ping pong balls out of a tissue box attached to your butt

We came in 3rd place, but because we placed higher than the Red Sea and the teams that finished ahead of us were in 7th and 9th place, we ended up being in first when the synchronized swimming started. Unfortunately, because it was so rocky, we couldn’t use the pool so they ended up “swimming” in the Union. Our team was awesome and really funny (the only team to still wear their speedos and pretended to swim) and the song? Pirates of the Caribbean theme song! 

At this point in the competition, we were in 1st place with the Red Sea right behind us. It was down to the last event that could make or break us: Lip-sync. Caribbean was the first to go, and we nailed it. We weren’t given a theme, so Tyler had the great idea of doing a mash-up of songs that summed up our trip.
1.       “I’m on a Boat”- this was really just for our entrance
2.       “Set my world into Motion”- Tyler dressed up in a suite and pretended to be our dean, Tom
3.       “Tale of Captain Jack Sparrow” (SNL version)- Cody came out dressed as a pirate
4.       “I Knew You were Trouble.” In Hawaii, roughly 200 students were really stupid and rented out rooms in a hotel. They ended up getting super drunk and kicked out, and we ended up getting yelled at big time by Tom.( I wasn’t there though, don’t worry!) Bailey dressed up as the manager and we had a picture of the hotel on the screen. The rest of us ran around pretending to be drunk
5.       “Tokyo Drift Theme Song” For Japan, obvs.
6.       “It’s so Hard to Breath”- This was for Beijing because of all the smog
7.       “Marry You” – In Vietnam, there was a lot of talk about people getting married because it wouldn’t count in the US. We got another lecture from Tom on that one
8.       “Jai Ho” For India
9.       “Wakka Wakka”- Because our next stop is Africa. I got to be Shakira, which shouldn’t come as a surprise since I was Ke$ha in high school :)  
Lip-Synch Team (the guy with the face-paint, Cody, was my husband)

We got second in Lip-sync but because the Red Sea placed lower than us we ended up with the most points which meant… CARIBBEAN SEA WON THE SEA OLYMPICS!!!!!!

The thing that I loved most about the Sea Olympics was that it brought our hall so much closer. Before the Olympics, I hardly knew anyone who I was living with because we really only saw each other in passing. But when the games started, everyone got involved. During the relay, we had the entire team following our guys throughout the ship to each event cheering them on. No other sea did that! We also had an insane amount of team spirit, and everyone was really jealous that our hall was so involved. We are even trying to get shirts made in South Africa to commemorate our victory, and there is talk that we are going to have a sea talent to compete in the talent show later on. I wish that this was an everyday event rather than having to go to class. It was incredibly fun, so make sure to participate if you come on SAS! 

Your Olympic Sea Champ

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