Chopstick had her first bad meet in almost a year this weekend. After one race, she actually complained that she felt “slow”. I can tell you this isn’t typical; usually her worst times are about 0.2 seconds slower than her personal best. This weekend, she had 5 events where she was 1 to 3 seconds slower than her best time.
There is only one logical conclusion: the pool is cursed. Nothing else makes sense. It wasn’t all bad, she had 3 personal bests but even that statistic is misleading. On her 50 back, she dropped 0.59 seconds and she needed to drop 0.60 to make a JO. On her 100 back, she dropped 0.77 seconds, but she needed to drop 0.97 to make a JO. Think what would have happened without the pool being jinxed.
This is where my “practical” side comes in. I am a very logical, solution-oriented person. Think Spock with a longer wing span and attractive ears. I can’t send my daughter out to a jinxed pool to swim, I need a way to combat this. How do you fight fire? With water. How do you fight bad water? With good water.
So the obvious practical solution is to get a couple of jugs, take a tour of the Bay Area’s luckiest pools (starting with those where she got PRTs), and take a couple of scoops of water from each pool. Bring a bit of that water to a pool which we believe might be cursed (I’m looking at you Soda Aquatic Center in Orinda) and fight bad energy with good.
My first thought was dump a couple of ounces of fast water into their pool but Homeland Security might raise an eyebrow at the weird Swim Dad pouring liquid into a pool before a meet with hundreds of kids. Next idea was to dump a cup on her head before every race but then I pictured how Chopstick would react to that during the upcoming winter season and nixed that idea. So, we decided that she’ll just splash a tablespoon or so on her suit and hands before each race as part of her ritual.
Now I just have to talk the poolkeepers at Mills, Chabot, and Walnut Creek to let me have a gallon of their pool water without getting arrested.