Friday, 26 August 2016

Top 5 Things I Learned from the Olympics

I bet you’ve been waiting for this kind of post, huh? Admittedly, I am a bit of a sports fanatic, especially when it comes to track and field events…where I eventually hope to compete someday.

But, I actually wasn’t going to do this kind of post—I’m sure most people are kind of tired of all the Olympics (especially my grandma who has been waiting for her favourite show to come back on—America’s Got Talent.) And maybe I’m a little burnt out too. But the other day, Grandpa and I were chatting about my school year goals, and he said, “Go for gold, son. To succeed, think like an Olympian!”

It seemed like a strange comment, until I really started thinking about some of the things I’d learned from watching the Olympics—and then how I could apply those lessons to school. In no particular order, here are my top 5:

  1. Take challenge in stride. One thing Olympic athletes know how to do is pick themselves up when they fall—no matter how many times they get knocked down, they get back up again. How does that apply to school? No one would ever accuse me of being a math genius, but I’m going to challenge myself to get 80% this year. It’s okay if I don’t make it. I’ll brush myself off and try year.
  2. Never give up. Everyone fails at some point—even Einstein, who is considered one of the smartest people in the world. Whether it’s mastering my personal best on the field, trying out for that school play, or acing my first math test, I am going to keep trying until I WIN.
  3. Know yourself. I know my strengths and weaknesses. I may not be a marathon runner, but I can run my grandpa’s canola field in 10 minutes flat. It would be silly for me to sign up for long distance running this year—but I can definitely work harder at my sprint. 
  4. Don’t be afraid. When we give into fear, we can lose out on opportunities. This year, I’m not going to be afraid to try something new, or find a fresh way to tackle something that’s hard. I may even write a novel—wouldn’t THAT be golden?
  5. You are a champion. This is an important one. Every single athlete who competed in the Olympics is a “champion” no matter whether they stood on the podium or not—but you don’t have to be the best swimmer in the world (*cough Michael Phelps cough *) to be a champion. Every smile, random act of kindness, or hug makes you a champion to someone. EMBRACE IT!

Okay, I gotta jet! This is my last weekend before school starts and I’m going to enjoy it—a family BBQ, hours of reading, a couple more rounds of Pokemon Go, and an epic school supply trip, which is always my favourite part of the year. I LOVE new notebooks! Have a great weekend.

~ Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 19 August 2016

The 2016 Back to School List

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…

Okay, maybe I just copied that from a Staples commercial, but unlike a lot of my friends, I don’t actually DREAD going back to school. Sure, it’s nice to sit around and watch the Olympics, play Pokemon Go, or stay up late, but with the end of August just around the corner, I start getting antsy. Like I’m ready to jump back into the rhythm and routine of…school. (Weird, right?)

And it’s about this time that I start making some school year goals for myself. Nothing earth-shattering—it’s not like I get horrible grades (though my Math could use a boost) or get in trouble—but there are some things I want to focus on to make THIS year the BEST year ever. You know what I mean?

If there’s anything that watching the Olympics has taught me this summer, it’s that with hard work, determination, and an unwavering belief in yourself, ANYTHING is possible. Which is why this year, I vow to learn a new language. I know, I’m shocked too.

I’ve decided on French. Did you know that some of the Superman Duffy comics are being translated into French? Cool—except I wouldn’t really be able to read them. Yet. Living in Canada, people almost expect you to know two languages. I know the basics, but to read in French? You’d lose me at “Bonjour!” By the end of this school year, I want to be able to read at least Fields of Home in French. Want to join me?

Obviously I plan to commit to track and field (especially after seeing some of those amazing Olympic races), but I wouldn’t mind joining the drama club this year too, maybe try my hand at writing a play or something. I like building stuff—like that time Grandpa and I built a soap box race car—so I could even work with the props. I don’t think I’m ready for a leading role on stage though.

I got a decent mark in Math, but I’m going to see if I can do even better this year. And of course, I’d love to keep going my trend of NOT losing my lunch kit. Maybe this year I’ll remember to pack a lunch every day. (I miss when Mom used to make my lunches…Sigh.)

What kinds of goals do you set for yourself? Drop me a line in the comments! (Maybe I can even score you an e-book of the French Fields of Home…)

Gotta jet!

~ Chase Superman Duffy

Monday, 15 August 2016

5 Things I’ve Learned Playing Pokemon Go

I’m not the type of kid that likes to be cooped up inside—in fact, running around my grandpa’s canola field is one of my favourite things to do. But with the Olympics in full swing, my entire family is pretty much glued to the TV…when they’re not working or sleeping, of course.

Me? Well, I’ve been playing a lot of Pokemon Go with my sister. (Yes, we’re careful!) At first, I thought it was kind of silly, but I admit, the game is addictive. Plus, it gets me away from the TV—inbetween my favourite Olympic events—and back outside, where I most like to be.

Bonus? I’ve learned a few things along the way. Like…

  1. Pokemon are NOT everywhere. I know, there are thousands of Pokemon sightings in the craziest places—even bathrooms! But I can tell you for certain there are no Pikachu’s hiding in my grandpa’s canola field. Which is good, since you’re not supposed to walk through the crop anyway, no matter how fuffy it looks! (Actually, you should never go on someone’s property without asking.)

  2. I’m in pretty good shape. To advance in the game, you have to walk a lot. I mean, A LOT. Since I’m a runner, walking doesn’t bother me. But my little sister is having a hard time keeping up. Maybe I should challenge Lightning to a Pokemon Go race. <grin> 
  3. People look funny searching for Pokemon—including me. Picture this…my sister and I wandering aimlessly through the park, cell phone screens in front of our faces, walking in circles as we try to locate the nearest Poke Stop. The good thing? We’re not alone! Half of the people in the park have the same expression. Ha!
  4. Poke Stops are in the strangest places. My sister found a “gym” near this really cool antique store where she not only nabbed a Pokemon, but I snagged some old Hardy Boys books. Win win! Plus, we’ve been learning about our area because of the cool places we’ve found Poke Stops. Cool, right? 
  5. Safety first! Yeah, we’ve seen the news, and Mom has warned us about keeping our eyes open and not wandering into the middle of the street…which sounds like common sense, but some people have done it! That’s why my sister and I play together…we’ve always got each other’s backs.

I think a lot of people thought the Pokemon Go phase would….go away. <grin> But I overhead my mom talking to one of my teachers who said they’re even going to use the game IN CLASS. Good thing I’m working on level 15…I’ll be ahead in at least one subject come September. <grin>

Gotta jet!

~ Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 5 August 2016

Let the Games begin

For the past few weeks, I’ve been counting down to the Summer Olympics—covering everything from food and culture, to the countries and athletes taking part in the Games. 

The wait is OVER.

Although some of the sports have already begun (Nice soccer gold, Canada!), the Olympics officially kick off tonight with an opening ceremony that is rumoured to be EPIC! If nothing else it will be historic, because for the first time, a team of Refugees will march in under the Olympic flag. (My mom says she’s probably going to cry.)

Whichever country—or athletic hero—you’re rooting for, I hope your eyes are glued to the ceremonies this evening. I plan on catching as many of the events as I can. My dad says it’s not wasting time watching TV because I can do all kinds of things to get my brain ready for back to school.


Keeping track of the medal count will help me with statistics, percentages, and other math stuff. I can “report” on the events to practice my writing skills, or write haikus about the athletes and their sports. I can learn about geography by mapping out the different countries taking part in the Games. And obviously, I can study the athletes’ form for tips on how to improve my running performance. It’s going to be 10 days of AWESOME!

Where will YOU be watching the Games?

Gotta Jet! 

~ Chase Superman Duffy