2013 Celtic Classic Class 4 Bagpipe Band Competition Highlights

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Good morning and Happy Friday to everyone!  Here are some highlights from the 2013 Celtic Classic Bagpipe competition.  The bands in the video are Class 4 bands.  The bagpipe bands are rated on a scale of 1 to 5.  Class 5 being the more inexperienced bands who are still trying to hone their craft and become a more tight-knit unit.  Class 1 bands are the bands who are experts at their craft.  Some competitions do not even have Class 1 bands as that level only has the best of the best.  There appear to be more CLass 2-4 bands than any other class.  Sometimes there are competitions where there is no band in a specific class.

The bands practice and perform long hours just to be able to compete against other bands at this level.  Bands ranged from high school students to the most experienced pipers.  Even the slightest mistake can mean the difference in finishing with a one spot difference.  Carnegie Mellon University sent their well oiled machine of bagpipers and drummers down for competition.  It did not matter what you competed in, the Highland Games or the Bagpipe competition, everyone gave their all just to finish one spot higher than their competition.

The video has four bands performing.  I was at other events and seeing what else the Celtic Classic had to offer rather than covering every band who competed.  The next update will have video highlights from the Highland Game competition and highlights from watching herding dogs do their job.  If you do enjoy the videos I post, leave a comment or a message.  Always nice to get feedback from those who appreciate the work I put into the videos and website.

 

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2013 Celtic Classic tartan Parade Video

Good afterbnoon everyone!  Gina and I had a very entertaining weekend at the 2013 Celtic Classic.  Thousands came out for their 25th year of providing a great festival of Celtic heritage.  Gina and I were kilted for the occasion.  I might add a picture on that the next time.  The Celtic Classic featured babpipe competitions, the 2013 Highland Games, a Highland Dance Competition, a night of comedy, a youth fiddle competition, whickey tasting and so much more.

IMG_7124There were bands performing each day, tons of different foods to sample including fried haggis, and a slew of vendors providing Celtic  merchandise for every age range.  Both Scotland and Ireland were represented to each country’s fullest.  It really was a fun time had by all.  There was entertainment around every corner for every age group.  From the Tartan Parade to learning to pour the perfect pint of Guinness, there was something for everyone.  That is, if you were not getting pissed at the Jameson Irish Pub they had set up.

The official start of the Celtic Classic came with the Tartan Parade on Saturday.  Everyone lined the parade route to get a glimpse of the pipe bands and O’Grady Quinlan Academy of Irish Dance who had over 100 dancers.  Actually, one could hear them coming even before you could see them.  The final band of the parade had so many members, it reminded me of the wooden soldiers in the Laurel & Hardy classic “March of the Wooden Soldiers“.  The only item missing was Mickey Mouse in a blimp.

Here is the Tartan Parade in its fullest.  Later in the week I will have highlights from the bagpipe competition and the Highland Games.  I may have some surprises in there as well regarding other footage from the Celtic Classic.  So for now, enjoy the parade!!

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Warrior Dash Was First Hurdle In Personal Obstacle Course

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Good afternoon on this August Tuesday everyone.  The Warrior Dash was this last weekend and it was a fun race.  The race was the only thing fun about the day.  It rained the entire morning and really made the course extra muddy.  It was hard to run in areas that made sense to run in.  Did you understand that?  In other words, the expected dry areas to run on were now just sloppy and dangerous.  Many people were sliding and slowing down.  Some were complaining about how their time would be affected.  Others did not care.

Import 2My heat began at 1 PM.  My wife and I were thankful were had donated to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital and have access to the VIP tent to stay out of the rain.  That was a highlight.  Able to wait it out the rain and remain dry majority of the time.  Also a few private port-a-potty‘s.  Even though I was prepared, I was still emptying my bladder every 15 minutes.  Nerves will never go away.  The same thing would happen in wrestling before going through the curtain.  Go to the bathroom a few times and then it was showtime.

There was even a wait to get on a few obstacles.  One obstacle in particular where one had to crawl under barbed wire had a good 5-7 minute wait just to start it.  Thankfully the rain stopped right before the start of my heat.  Even with that blessing from above the course was treacherous at points.  I may not be the best conditioned athlete, but certain points I know I could have been running at if it was not so muddy.  When I start a physical activity, I like to finish as hard as I start the event.  The mud detracted from that as caution and safety took over.

I think I was the only one to finish the race with no mud on their chest, head, and face.  I wear contact lenses for a race like this.  I also wear swimming goggles to protect my eyes in a race like this.  I received compliments on my use of swimming goggles.  Some wore tutu’s, other team’s matching shirts, and others barely anything at all, I wore swimming goggles.  If I could have any of these courses mud free, I would.  There are many like myself who would love a course with nothing but obstacles & less distance running, without having to join the military.

The distance running in majority of these mud runs is a necessary evil.  At least cut back on the mud.  There is no need for it to be waist deep.  I would love to see more challenging obstacles in the typical Warrior Dash without having to sign up for an Iron Warrior Dash or Urban Warrior Dash.  Some of these groups offer more than one kind of run.  The Spartan Race and Tough Mudder do the same as well.  There is even a kids Spartan Race.  I think that is a great event for kids.  I plan on tackling the courses for the Spartan Race and Rugged Maniac in the future.  I know I will need to work on my stamina and do the necessary cardio.

Import 1One of the best personal reasons for me to do this race is to complete a personal challenge.  I have run this race two years in a row with no teammates and I savor the sense of self accomplishment in finishing a race of this kind.  Where teammates are helping each other on each obstacle, I tackle them alone.  The feeling of no limitations on my personal self increases the light on the person I have kept down for years.

Myself.

I have always played it careful when it has come to letting my true self shine.  Years of bullying bullied suppressed the person I know I can be.  Fearful of others opinions without even considering my own.  Not putting me before the comments that were being made of me.  I am not just talking about physical bullying, but verbal as well.  There were some girls in middle & high school that would also be verbal bully’s.  Verbal bullying went on for me well into college.  I can remember working at a company in college where my peers would make me feel small from it.

There are times certain incidents will pop into my head.  I never let them take control of me or my confidence these days.  I use it to be more determined to succeed.  Another step in that direction is to go all out, not caring about what anyone thinks.  As Nike says, to just do it.  I keep preaching about leaving that proverbial comfort zone.  It is time for me to take my own advice and be comfortable in my own skin.  To be the opinionated, sarcastic, wise ass that everyone knows me to be.  Not in a bad way though.  It is just my personality and who I am.

Camera Roll-250In the movie Tombstone, Val Kilmer is Doc Holiday and Kurt Russell is Wyatt Earp.  Doc Holiday passes a comment regarding Wyatt Earp’s wife.  Wyatt Earp chuckles while his brother Morgan, played by Bill Paxton, took offense to the comment.  Wyatt tells Morgan that Doc meant no harm by the comment, that it is just his style and he doesn’t mean anything.  The same goes for me.  I never mean any harm from the comments or jokes I may pass, it is just my nature and who I am.  I only poke fun at the people I like.  I never mean any disrespect.  My sarcastic, wise ass humor has always worked with my quick wit and intelligence.  It is just who I am.

I have been standing alongside the highway of life, holding my thumb out, hoping to hitch a ride with someone instead of taking the chance to drive that road myself.  It is about time I did.  I have had control of the wheel many times.  I just never mapped out my own course.  I seemed to rely on others for that.  No more.  Time to put myself out there and not worry about failing or criticism.  I have learned from other failures in life, why should it stop me now?  Everyone needs to experience the failure as much as success.  If you never learn from your failures or mistakes, then you will be doomed to repeat them.  I have had my fair share of mistakes and failures, believe me.

On my YouTube channel I will be starting a weekly video blog.  I may decide to post more than weekly if the desire and enough topics come up that warrant it.  I have a strange feeling it will on occasion.  Many issues about current events, the New York Jets, my past, my future, other projects, random opinions, being bullied, and plenty of other topics that require more commas.  Sometimes writing is not enough as certain emotions and body language make video a better form of self expression.

I do not want to ramble on, cramming topics that have no relation to each other into one post.  Your mind would be over the place more than a Jack Russell Terrier.  Which means I will have to come back more often to update everyone.  Sounds good here.  I enjoy saying what everyone else thinks.  Making statements and passing comments that make others gasp, but know those comments are true.  If you are not a fan of that, sarcasm, and comments that “straddle the line”, then you may want to read another blog.  If you are one who enjoys that kind of wit and banter, then I encourage you to keep coming back to enjoy yourself while having a few laughs.

Time to get some other items done.  Will be moving in a few weeks so time is spent packing and tossing out items that have been sitting in closets for over 10 years.  Many bags of clothes and other items have already been donated to Goodwill.  Still a ton more to go through.  I will have my first vlog up next week.  It will be raw with no graphics or effects, but no sense in waiting considering I have waited long enough.  See you all soon, on here and on YouTube.

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