Wednesday, August 20, 2008

WE Canadians have Van Koeverden

For the first week of the Olympics, all I heard was Phelps, Phelps, Phelps.

Well, now it's our turn. We have Van Koeverden. Or Adam, Adam, Adam. (Sorry bud, your name is a mouthful - no offense intended, after all my boys have Ouellette. Try to pronounce that!)

Intense, respectful, driven, competitive, ambitious, patriotic, outstanding.

What an incredible role model for my boys. Proof that dedication and hard work pays off. Adam Van Koeverden trains in Oakville at the BurlOak Canoe Club, about 6kM away from the house. Not that my kids are going to meet him, but it makes his success more immediate. More personal.

This boy is a freaking rock star around here. Who knew paddling a kayak could bring that kind of adulation? He's earned it. I love his self-confidence, his charisma, his take-no-prisoners way of attacking life.

In a recent article he was asked if he sees his fame as a burden or a challenge: "I try to use my fame as positively as I can, because I see a lot of people using theirs for selfish reasons instead of having a positive effect on the younger generation. I accept it as a responsibility and an obligation. It's a cool feeling, and I try to be as positive a role model as I can."

My kids may or may not meet this man in person, but boy, am I thrilled with the influence he has on them!

In his test against the rest of the world, which will happen this week, I wish him well, he deserves gold. All the way, baby - you didn't go for any other medal - get that gold!!

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