This blog is now retired. My new site is at: Predictably Irrational.

Friday, September 24, 2010

One Day You're Up and the Next Day You're Down

Yesterday: Amazing Race leg #6.

We are off and grab our first clue, which is a list of counts we have to do for various things.

First: count the number of pavers on the path starting at the clue box. Next, count the number of steps between two buildings, including the landings. As I was stepping down the steps I thought to myself "Shit, I do this all the time! Why is it so difficult now???"

Third: Count the number of hedges around the circle in front of another building. Next, find Internal Gear and count the number of lights around it. I was psyched since I knew exactly where this sculpture was. No one seemed to be in front of us. I didn't see Charles/Chad anywhere, and they were the team in front of us.

As we run back from the sculpture, I tell Tim: let's run through the building! And he was like "nope, we're not allowed". Thank goodness for someone paying attention because apparently I can't think well under Amazing Race circumstances.

Next, go back to another building and count the number of letters under Perseverance. This ended up being one of those inspirational posters with a lot of fricking words: 102 letters I counted.

Then it was counting the number of starting blocks at the pool; then counting the number of wall plaques in the trophy case. I am going to count those again NOW because we came up with a totally different number and yes, I know what wall plaques are!!!

The last two was to write down the maximum weight that the tricep machine could do and the number of RFC staff members.

With these numbers, we had to plug them into four 'formulas' to come up with an ending number. It would be something like 10 + < number from 3rd count > - 100. Then add that number to a large number like 1112345.

The resulting number, say 1123468, would then fit into another pattern like: _ _, _ _, _, _. Thus, the number would be 11, 23, 4, 6, 8. These numbers then would correlate to the alphabet as the key: a=1, b=2, c=3, d=4, etc.

However, if you had your count wrong, or are bad at math, then your numbers would mean nothing. That was our case. We could not get a distinguishable word made from our four clues. We worked on it forever, joined forces with others, only to come up with NOTHING. Well, my first word was UARIA. The end result was that word should have been UARGE, which is also a mistake on Domino's part where it should have been LARGE.

One funny story I got from a fellow team was, our friend Heman Robinson was in the gym as we were trying to figure out the clue and my team friend asked Heman "What is the hex translation for BA?" Which Heman then gives an answer to...which is so Heman's personality! But that's how bad we all were struggling...wondering if there were Hex codes involved in translating it to numbers and letters.

Regardless, we did not have the words and ended up "giving up" and following the crowd. Our first mob mistake was finding clues at a gazebo which were instructions to the pit stop. We ran like crazy to get there, only to have Janel give us the hand and was like "nope. you didn't finish the clues." As we now walked back, frustrated, I see and hear Domino telling us "You can't move on until you figure out your clues!"

Yes, Domino. If only it were that easy.

Tim was deflated and I was spazzy. Eventually, the clue was sort of figured out to be UARGE TREE NEAR DEER, and we were able to get the real clue, which was then a Detour...something about Cotton or Candy. We chose candy since the majority of the crowd went with cotton.

We ran back to another building and the task was to pick up an M&M with a straw, then walk over to another area and place the M&M on top of another straw. This was actually a lot of fun, despite feeling defeated at this point. We got through it fairly quickly and then ran to the pit stop (which the clue was to run to the gazebo for our next clue, but we had already known what that clue was).

We made it to the pit stop, FINALLY. Team number 11.

That's right. Fricking ELEVEN. From TWO to ELEVEN. I could see the life zapped out of Tim, to an already shitty week for him.

Some of us stood around for minutes afterward, comparing notes, complaining, whining. "Winning" a leg doesn't really mean anything until the last leg, where the top three teams move into the winner's leg. But it DOES mean something for my, I mean, OUR egos, winning a leg. And they all agree, whether they know it or not, because all the teams are running, sprinting, seriously assessing their clues, trying to beat each other to that pit stop mat.

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