Sunday, February 14, 2010

Thailand, 2010

So begins the fun…
We have arrived in Thailand. It took us nearly seventeen hours to fly over the Pacific Ocean to touch down in Bangkok, followed by another two hours via bus to arrive at our resort here in Pattaya.

One’s senses are entirely taken over. Beautiful Buddhist temples, surrounded by thick, lush foliage. Birds of every shade, monkeys, elephants, cobras-all available on display, as well as some just roaming freely in the streets. The people, with their dark sundrenched skin, are always peaceful, collected. The exotic smells of coconut, lemongrass, and various other spices fill the air, making one’s stomach growl with anticipation of the mind-altering foods experienced here. There is always movement in the air, be it from the flutter of wings, the music of the Thai language, or just the sound of the gentle breeze caressing whatever is in it’s path. This place is magical beyond belief, and I am so thrilled to have my season start in such an alluring locale.
The flight was fairly smooth. Hell, there might have been a change in aircrafts halfway over the Pacific and I would not have been the wiser. One thing I do well is sleep on planes. I could be completely knocked out for an entire trans-Atlantic flight. Having said that, I was able to sleep for about 11 hours of the flight, with a few moments of less than entirely cognitive thought here and there. I had a great chat with my girls, Morgan Pressel, Meaghan Francella, Natalie Gulbis, Brittany Lang and Stacy Lewis. The start of the season is always like the first day of school, where you find out what your friends did over the break. People are buying new houses, cars, going on vacations, making new friends, being on TV shows, and whatnot. It’s pretty awesome, and we are all very fortunate to be in a place in life where we are able to achieve these things.


Everyone is very excited to read my book, and there is already a queue for the two books that I brought with me. MF and MP were the first to read them, and Nat is next in line. (She was asleep when I busted them out.) I am trying to keep it hush hush, as I do not want to be bombarded with a queue so long that I will never see the books again! So far, I am thrilled and humbled to say that both MF and MP loved it; they were laughing hysterically and quoting lines the entire time they had their hands on it. I am not sure how all of the other people riding in business class felt, as it was somewhere in the middle of the night Thailand time when they were reading it. Meaghan got a bit of a head start in reading it and when she finished, she gave it to Natalie to start reading. I am very curious as to what the girls think of the book, especially considering the fact that they are in it themselves.
This marks the very first time that I did not once turn on my inflight entertainment system. I had my iPhone blaring Shinedown’s Sound of Madness on repeat for about three hours. I also had my MacBook Pro up, watching the two music videos for Sound of Madness-the original music video, as well as a live performance from one of their concerts in Atlanta. Obsessed much with that song? Just shmaybe a lil bit. I can sing every word to that and several other Shinedown songs. Call me what you will, but I know I am just dedicated lol!!!

Including players, caddies, tour officials, agents and family members, we had approx 25 people on our flight, and the tournament had a great big 40-50 passenger bus to take us the normally two hours to Pattaya from the airport in Bangkok. Took everyone about 45 minutes to get everything organized, because the bag-person ratio is close to 3-1, if you include large carry-on bags. I myself had two suitcases, a golf bag, and a carry-on. And my purse. I’m going to be gone for a month overseas, whatever! We managed to get everyone’s luggage in either the bottom cargo compartment, or up in the back few rows of the bus. Only thing was that now we were having to share a lot of seats. Now mind you this isn’t that big a deal, but after a nearly 17 hour flight, we like having a little bit of space. Especially when a few days ago, 49 states had received at least a sprinkling of snow, and then suddenly we were thrown into the tropical heat!
On board the bus, we had snacks, and had a chance to catch up a little bit more with one another. Lots of changes took place over the offseason for many people. You need not know what we discussed, but all seems to be well for everyone.
The ride ended up taking only 90 minutes, due in part and many thanks to our police escort. There were trucks, buses, motorcycles and tuk-tuks (Thailand’s version of the rickshaw) EVERYWHERE!!! We were dodging people left and right, but it was a fairly smooth ride, considering how scary a ride can actually be here without the police escort. It reminds me like much of Italy, where the white painted lines indicating lane separation is taken more as a suggestion and less a guideline or law.
Our hotel is utterly breathtaking, with some amazing foliage, beautiful beaches, and stunning pools, gym, restaurant, spa, you name it. We are all very happy to arrive to such a wondrous resort, especially after such a long trip. In total, some girls that flew from Orlando to Thailand took about 30 hours under their belts. It's amazing what we do for our jobs, us and everyone else in the world.
The wonderful people with BBTV Channel 7, the official television channel used here in Thailand to broadcast the event, had stamps made of each player participating in the tournament. It's so sweet the things people do for you, isn't it? I don't care for or want for big lavish gifts that can be purchased in bulk and mean nothing. When someone take time out of their day to come up with something creative and truly touching, I think that shows someone's character and thoughtfulness. But then again, what do I know? I buy and get big lavish gifts, but those are normally for myself!
Anyway, I am off to go hit the beach and or the pool before I practice and play a quick nine holes in the afternoon. If I stay in the room for too long, I will surely end up napping and suffering from some severe jet-lag!

On a side note, please remember that the #CKJR Giveaway (see previous post) ends on Friday, Feb 21st at 12:00midnight.

On yet ANOTHER note, my travels are listed below. For those that forgot, I am going to log just how many miles I fly this year, as it does fascinate me. I posted an entry about it here. That being said, I have to refresh the numbers...

2819 (previous total, up to travel to Jamaica, 1/31)
1120 MJB-ATL
402 ATL-MCO
2210 MCO-LAX
8262 LAX-BKK
_________________
14,813 miles


Perhaps I shall do a contest.... Hmmm... gears turning... OKOK, I have to go! *hugs*

Saturday, February 13, 2010

#CKJR, the aftermath

Hey there, everyone!!! If this is your first encounter with the SuperBowl Sunday #CKJR Showdown thingy, you must have been hiding under a rock or been abducted by aliens. Either way, welcome back.
On SuperBowl Sunday, my buddy John Raser, aka @johnraser and I played in a (somewhat) friendly match. At stake (other than pride)-the loser has to caddy for the winner in a tournament of the winner's choice. Within a day of the challenge (made via twitter, thank you) it was all abuzz. Even The Golf Channel folks knew and Yahoo! News picked up the story!
I won't bore you with the details of the match (John won with an incredible birdie on the 18th hole... whatever... ;) Loves you!!!), but it was an exciting and utterly thrilling day! I hadn't laughed that much in such a long time. Yeah, a tiny crush might have formed from all of this, I won't lie. John is an absolute doll, we have somewhat similar personalities (a true rarity), and he beat me in golf. As is, is and did my buddy, Eddie Moses. There's a pattern, it seems. Oh well. So I am going to be "roughing it up on the Tar Heel Tour" as I have read somewhere. I can not wait!
Anyway, in the aftermath of the first #CKJR, John and I were brainstorming, and here is what we have since come up with. Watch the video below, comment so that we can read, confer with one another, and decide. Many thanks, good luck, we will be in touch!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

CKJR 2010, Let's get ready to RUMBLE!!

Now, what started as a simple and sweet gesture by me to play a round of golf with my friend, John Raser, aka @johnraser, has turned into an all-out tactical dogfight. I made the suggestion that we play sometime, something along the lines of
Christina KimTheChristinaKim @johnraser well let's play manana. I don't much ask or beg, so feel special, damnit boy!!!


His response (via DM) 
John Raserjohnraser and YES, bring your wallet.

My retort?
@johnraser Mwahahaha no chancey you're taking my $$ boy! We do this Saturday. You have no choice in the matter.

I took that as both an acceptance to my request to play a round of golf, whilst at the same time a blow to my ego, because I haven't lost money in a match in like, FOREVER and a few days... So of course... One of the world's finest twitter battles then ensued, with tweets varying from 

johnraser @ThomasAbt *chest bump* Oh don't worry... I plan on getting her down quick then stepping on her throat. (kinky, huh?) ;-) #CKJR

to
TheChristinaKim @johnraser @ThomasAbt whoa whoa whoa, no feet allowed! I'm bringing my stabby knife! That's a fact!#CKJR


and who can forget
TheChristinaKim I'm coming for your sweet tender soul, @johnraser!!!*Repeated stabbing motion, with a final twist of the knife*




Mind you, I was under the impression we were friends, but Nobody puts Baby in a Corner. So the violent and hateful tweets carried on (all in good fun, mind you!!!) and then all of a sudden people were getting mad interested. Which, of course, to me, only makes me want to tweet even more violently. On the downside, however, both John and I started to receive some pretty nasty hate mail via twitter DMs. He and I both got irked by this, but thankfully people started to back off.

After about 24 hours of constant tweeting back and forth, we decided to up the purse from merely buying lunch/dinner (depending on when we teed off, that would be the defining factor as to when we would eat, obviously...) to something a little bit more exciting. He suggested I clean his clubs for a year, I threw at him the idea of him no longer watching Jersey Shore or FOX News. He didn't bite. Finally, after much scrutinizing, I decided/ Whoever loses has to caddy one week for the other player in a tournament. Thank God John was down with that!!! I didn't want to be stuck cleaning balls for a year!!  

I also know exactly which event I want him to caddy for me, as well. He loves (like, to a disturbing degree, I think) the reality show, Jersey Shore, and he's a fun-loving, crazy, stay up till all hours kind of guy, and so I thought, Hell, why not bring him TO the Jersey Shore?! In Mid June we have an event in Atlantic City, and I know that my boys @waggleroomgolf and @njguinness will be there to support and point and laugh at us. Right, guys?! We'll make a whole twitter spectacle out of the thing, it will be great!!!!

So anyway, yes, that is where sweet, sweet John Raser (gospeedraser indeed) will be caddying in his first LPGA tournament, in Atlantic City, on the Jersey Shore. We'll go to the Borgata and play lots of blackjack and 3-card poker and other games with cards where random people take my money at odd intervals. And then give me back some, only to take it away again... Le sigh, such is life.
Granted, if I were to lose, I will have to (merrily, who am I kidding?!) join John for a week on the Tar Heel Tour, in the greater Charlotte region, if I am not mistaken. Hell, I am a dynamite reader of greens, and as a player myself, I know what to say to a player and when. Either way, it will be a day of UStream, twitpics, tweets, running commentary, shoes being thrown into bodies of water, stabbings with my stabby knife, and an overall great day of golf.

Oh and we were thinking of playing sometime on Sunday, right before the Superbowl. Just to make the game seem that much less appealing.  

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Up in The Air...?

I haven't actually seen the movie myself, but I know that it's a heart-wrenching movie, especially for people like me who travel some 30-odd weeks out of the year... I don't know if I will actually ever go see it, because my friend, who is one of the toughest guys I have ever met, related to much to the movie that he cried and walked out of the movie. Must have been George Clooney...
Anyway, the general idea of the movie was passed unto me, and I have decided that this year, I am going to keep a running log of how many miles I fly. First class, economy, it doesn't matter to me. I am pretty easy when it comes to flying, thankfully because my legs are so short and I have the ability to sleep anywhere at any time, in any position. I could have been an opossum in another life... That having been said... I definitely PREFER first or business class, but only when it makes sense. If I am flying overseas to a large event, or if the flight is more than four hours long. I can entertain myself for four hours sitting straight up, maybe in yet another life I had to endure torture by the hands of the Spanish Inquisition, who knows?
My first trip by plane this year had me headed to the White House in Washington, D.C. as many of you can recall. It was great to have the (victorious) Solheim Cup Team back together to wreak havoc and what have you, and meeting the President of the United States was amazing, and such an honor. I then took a charter to NYC from there, where I had a fantastic lunch with the buyer for Barnes & Noble. The lunch went fantastically, and I had such a great time! I was meant to only in the city for about 24 hours, but because things were running so tight, the lunch took ten minutes longer than anticipated, and my cabbie decided to take the local route (still furiously shaking my fist at her for that choice), I ended up missing my check-in back to Florida by about ten minutes. Suffice to say the success of the lunch was more than enough for me to not mind. I ended up getting a chair massage, a manicure, a pedicure, having a panini and sitting at my computer to pass the time. I have no problem being in an airport terminal for long periods of time, so long as there is a place for me to sit, a plug for my computer, and my headphones are in. I eventually caught the 8:30 flight, and made my way back down the East Coast. 
The second trip I have made this year, I am still taking part in. It's business, it is, even if it IS in Jamaica.
I am helping out with the Mojo 6 Tournament that will be held here in stunning Montego Bay, Jamaica, April 13-16. I am also headed to Atlanta in about an hour, and then onwards to Orlando for four days, then to LA before heading to Bangkok for the start of the LPGA season! Whoop whoop!! 
Ok, so that puts my mileage accumulation (looking at emails and whatnot...) 
PBI-DCA-     858 miles
DCA-LGA-   213 miles
JFK-PBI-       1028 miles
MCO-MBJ-   720 miles
_____________________
2819 miles so far. It's been a very slow start to my year, travel-wise, so here we go!!!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

I love Jamaica, but...

As many of you have read in my tweets tonight, I attended a comedy show thing. Little did I know the mortification I experienced...
I thought I was going to have a lovely dinner with my friends, and the masterminds behind the Mojo 6 Tournament, Ed Moses and Joy Stephenson, after my 90 min massage, then see a show. Turns out that my massage took longer than their workouts and then they went down to grab a bite without me. Which is totally fine, as I would be just as happy to get some room service or grab some dinner without them. I have no qualms with eating on my own. As a solitary creature due to my occupation, as well as my own mindworks, I keep myself entertained thoroughly. I caught up with them at the restaurant and we had a quick bite, then meandered through the resort to grab the show. We ended up at the next hotel and sat down to see what they were showing. I can't recall why, but we did it. We sit down, the locals loved me, they called Ed Curly Locks, what with his huge head of curly hair.
Slowly the show starts, and I am laughing at the people onstage. It is a comedy show, and they were dancing, singing, and whatnot. It was great. Until the host asked for four ladies to join him on stage. I slid lower into my seat, and since it was dark, I figured no one would see me. I look immediately to my right, and Curly Locks is standing up, pointing a finger at me and hollering. What happens? They pick me. I get forced up the stage, andsit down next to a woman from Wisconsin, a French-Canadian, and a woman from Ottawa. I'm not pleased with Ed at this point.
As you can see, I am unnerved. My friend from Wisconsin and I are shaking our heads, thinking what are we getting into...?! Little did we know... We were forced to sing (my rendition of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star did not wow the crowd. The fact that I'm fighting a cold provided me with little sympathy.), do a "sexy walk" ( I was the queen, if I am not mistaken...) and act. Sometime after the "sexy walk" the host started calling me Jackie Chan's sister, then Jet Li's sister, then said something about me being Chinese, and I damned near walked off the stage. Of course, Ed was sitting in the front row, with a $h!t-eating grin on his Curly Locked mug. Not to mention the fact that he rummaged into my purse and took out my underwater Olympus camera and was taking video and photos left and right. What friends I have...
The host was at times funny, at times a rightful ass, but in the end he said it was all fun. RIGHT. I don't use derogatory terms while I am on stage, pointing out someone's differences, because we are all the same sack of sinew and blood and organs in the end. He was a bit of a jerk, but whatever, I have dealt with worse, and I pity him for having to make fun of another's people to crack jokes. I mean, make fun of your own, or something. Just do NOT tread on me.
In the end I was a good sport, and every one of the four contestants got a bottle of Appledom Rum. Now I have to contemplate the thought of smashing this over Curly Lock's head when I see him tomorrow, or bringing it home as a souvenir. I am leaning towards the latter, I don't want to ruin a good bottle of rum, whether it's a good bottle of rum or not. It'd take us weeks to get all that rum out of Curly Lock's coat.
I have included here the video of our "sexy walk." We had a lovely assistant who was there to provide us with a template to work on, and she could sing, dance, act, AND do a sexy walk! I wish I knew what I was getting into, I would not have shown up in flipflops!!!! Anyway, the crowd voted for us, and guess who won... Wasn't me in the end... I think my violent reaction toward the host docked me a few thousand points... ENJOY!!! My walk starts at like the 3:05min mark or something... Mortification... Curly Locks is gonna get it... Rrrrr..


video

2010 essentials, Part 1

With the 2010 LPGA season almost upon us (try in 13 days, AHHH!!!) I have decided that I am going to spend more time blogging. I mean, come on, I have not blogged in weeks! Shame on me! Tragic, I know. It doesn't help that I do not bust out a new entry in like two minutes, either. There are a lot of thought processes that go into a somewhat decent entry... So today, we are throwing that out the window! Let us see what kind of nonsense I am able to toss out in the twenty six minutes I have until my 90 min massage!
I have spent the last few weeks honing in on my skills, tinkering with new clubs, trying different ball configurations, and the whole lot. I (as of now) am fairly set on the current sticks in my bag.
I have gone through a few changes in my bag this offseason. Having had a good amount of success with my beloved TaylorMade r9, I called it quits, and now I have a Callaway FT-9 driver, set with a 7.5 degree head, opened to something along the lines of 7.2 degrees. It has taken Callaway a bit of time to get a head to set comfortably at 7.5 degrees, and I understand completely, as it is a loft of the old regime. I kick it old school still. With punch shots with everything, driver included. This thing is pretty damned hot, I won't lie. My favorite driver ever was an FT-3 that I used from 2006-2009 (I'm extremely loyal, my irons used to be HGs that I used for nearly a decade), but it broke when I touched down in Rio de Janiero, Brazil in Jan of 2009 and I had been fighting to find one that fits me since. I think we have a winner, though!
I still have the 3-wood that I picked up in France in 2008, a Callaway X 3W set at 13 degrees. It's been my baby forever, and as of right now I am thoroughly pleased with it. Hybrids are still from TM, a 4 and a 3 hybrid, which I finally broke down and tried out during the US Women's Open in 2009. They are almost like cheating. I do miss my TM r7 5Wood from like, 1966, but times had changed and I had to whiddle down the gaps I had in my long irons and my wedges. It took me years to admit it, but HYBRIDS RULE!
My new Titleist ap2s are fantastic. I got them a few weeks back, and had my boy Randall work and tweak them to perfection. I mean, he weighed every grip and added shavings of lead tape to the heads so that the clubs were all within a thousandth of a swing weight of one another. Mad skills, and now my irons are lethal. I used to use and loved my TM TP racs, but now I truly feel like I could stand over a ball, with a huge gorge between the green and myself, and damned near hole out. Mad props to Randall!
Wedges... Oh the battle, it still continues. I have my TaylorMade racs, with the new 2010 conforming grooves, but I have to decide (still, I know..) whether I should go with 54/58 degrees as I have done this last season, or if I should go back OLD SCHOOL with my 52/56/60 configuration. The groove regulation has not affected me to any great extent, but I think a lot of that reasoning is because the wedges are new, and heck, I used to use wedges that were nearly grooveless bc I loved them and refused to get new ones.
I still have my Callaway White Ice Sabertooth putter (used to be called the White Hot, but they went with a gunmetal finish and black accents, unlike the satin silver and red trimmed White Hot), with Cotton Candy written in pink on the sole. Long story, nicknames... hahahaha!!!!
Still pretty set on using my Titleist ProV1X ball, as I thought about and tinkered with the regular ProV1, but I am not sure yet. Either way, so long as the ball says Titleist on it, I will be comfortable. It truly is amazing what something as simple as a few letters can do to someone's comfort level. I tried the Bridgestone ball, and as much as I loved it, for some odd reason, the fact that Titleist wasn't staring back at me,  during many a crucial shot in a tournament, my mind would flip out. There's a lot to be said for change, and in many ways, I love change. But at the same time, certain things mean comfort, and comfort can guide you to security and success. Might be something to think about. Anyway, this took me 13 minutes to type, I am feeling proud of myself, and so having said that, I am going to head to the sauna pre-massage. More in-depth entries to come, I promise! But the thought of flushing toxins is just too tempting and my body demands it! I'm out! Hugsies to all!!!
P.S. I have a mad tweetlebrity (pretty sure that's not a word, but whatever) crush on @johnraser as well as @ebassprod. John is a great guy, supremely witty, and such a cutie. Oh, and he grew out long luscious locks of hair to donate to Locks of Love. I did a similar thing for the P&G Pantene ProV Beautiful Lengths in September, so I think that calls for him to be even more awesome. He is on the road to the PGA Tour, and I have no doubt in my mind that he will succeed and then have to fend off all the hot little girls that watch PGA tour events in miniskirts and high heels (in grass.. I mean, really ladies? Sinking into the mud wouldn't seem like a "hot" thing to do in my opinion, but what do I know). I will just crush from afar. He is great and his website is insightful, witty, and besides, he is just so cute!!! Hugs to John!
And Eric Bass is the bass player for the amazing rock band Shinedown. He is a writer, a musical genius(knowing how to play the bass, guitar, piano, and trombone. Trust me, if I knew him back in high school when he played, I'd be all over that!), producer, uber hot, and plays to a 6 handicap! AMAZING!! He said we should play a round in Charleston when he has some downtime, but I find it hard to believe one of the hottest bands in this day and age would find any downtime to go hit the links with lil ol me. Still... A girl can dream! Massagey time!!!!!