15 July 2022
The small world of swimming came back to me in a big way over the last two days swimming at this very wonderful 6 lane 25 yard pool at Club One Fit Chester, just across the Chesapeake Bay Bridge from Annapolis:
My company had an offsite meeting a few miles away, so I popped in here both Thursday and Friday mornings for 3,100 and 4,350 yard workouts, respectively. It was ultra clean, with wonderful skylights, cool water and just enough swimmers to make it feel energetic, but not so many I had to share a lane :)
During one of my breaks yesterday morning, a guy who was coaching a couple of teenagers, stopped me and asked, "OK. Where did you swim in college?" This led to a brief, but fun conversation where we each shared a little bit about our backgrounds. Through that, I learned that he had been the longtime coach of the nearby Severna Park YMCA swim team from 1978 until he retired in 2005.
The "small world of swimming" got very small right away: Severna Park YMCA was my second year round swim team, and I would have swum there roughly 1974 to 1976. We obviously missed each other, but did talk about a few coaches from the area we both knew.
I thought that was cool, but figured that was the end of it.
Until this morning ... when I was stopped in the midst of a set by another guy, who was holding a cell phone and he said, "Hey, Ken wants to know if you're the same P. Brundage who went 3:01 in the 200 IM in 1976?"
Now, I admit to being a guy who likes to track things and keep records. (I think this 1,001 pools goal and blog are sufficient evidence of that). But, even I don't have my swim times back that far.
I told him I must have been ... but wondered how the heck he knew that time from 46 years ago?
"You still hold the 8 & Under team record!"
And, sure enough, after connecting with Ken on Facebook and trading messages later today, I apparently do hold both the 8 & under 200 free and 200 IM records (filter on Short Course Yards):
Now, one technical thing to note is that it appears they've set all of the "way back" records from the last century arbitrarily to December 1st, as I was both 9 by that time and had moved to the Richmond, Virginia area over the summer of 1976.
Of note, as well, is that my best friend from those days, Marty Conner, also still holds a record. Now, I've long since lost touch with Marty ... but seeing his name brought back some very good boyhood memories.
So, while nothing on the scale of Mary T's greatness and record longevity, this is kind of cool ... and surely demonstrates that I was a distance dog and IM lover right from the get go!
Ken Barsa, you made my day!