Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Daniel Harris Artwork

This is some artwork that the ever-talented Dan Harris painted for me. He is very skilled as you can see. I love it too! Can't wait to get that up on the wall in the house. He has done other paintings for Bershawn Jackson as well.

Check out more of his artwork on his website Dan Draws.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Happy 21st

I have no idea what you and your outta pocket friends have planned for your 21st! LOL. My little sister is getting way too grown for me! Love you.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Opening Convocation

WOW!!! Howard held your boy down this weekend. I got butterflies when I landed at Reagan International, just remembering all the times I had in the Chocolate City, by far my favorite place to be.

They had Bren, Harold and I with the first class treatment from the time we stepped off the plane. Limo driver the entire time, Gold Floor status at the Fairmont Hotel, everything. See at Howard, a first class university, we go first class or no class at all!

I was able to get up with some of my old teammates for a great night on the town Thursday.

Friday was the 141st Opening Convocation at Howard, this was the introduction of our 16th President as well, Dr. Sidney A. Ribeau. I had the honor of being introduced and honored by him as well.
I signed some posters and programs as well. I always saw these commendations around the Administration Building and it is a great honor to be place amongst the greats that have roamed that campus.

I was able to see Coach Merritt, one of the first people to believe in my track and field abilities as well. It was great to catch up with him.
After the Convocation ceremonies, we had a lunch with President Ribeau, his wife, my mom, Harold, my uncle Randy (below) and several other Howard Alum stallworts.

You know Friday we got it in as well, had the limo riding around several spots. We hit Love REAL quick, I mean 10 minutes, it was pretty lame, we settled in at some spot I never heard of and had a pretty good time.

I hate when it comes time for me to leave D.C.!! At least I will be back in a couple weeks for the legendary Howard Homecoming!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Back In Business

Darth Maul is back. Now my comfort level is right back where it belongs! Thank God for extended warranties.

I'm off to catch my flight to D.C., I'm meeting up with Bren and Harold in the A, should be exciting.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Crib Action

My travels that took me from Shanghai to Atlanta, Atlanta to Orlando was not bad at all. I was dreading the 14 hours on the first leg, but I was in the A in no time. It felt good to place my feet on U.S. soil and switch my phone on and make a call to Bren, letting her know I was in the States.

It was pretty crazy in the airport, people kept coming up to me asking for pictures and autographs, two girls came sprinting over before I hoped on the train to get to the A gate. I sarcastically asked them why did they want to take a picture with me? They replied "You're famous now!", I said "No, not really." Tiffany got a kick out of that. I definitely wasn't expecting that, not in the United States.

On the flight to Orlando, a woman sitting next to me engaged me in conversation once we landed. She wanted to know about this watch I had on. I had on the Nike watch that we received when you made the Olympic Team. So I took it off so she could look at it, she saw the USA logo on the back of the watch and asked me about it. I told her how I got it and we started to talk about the Olympics. She is from Orlando, her husband is really in to track and he competes in marathons often and if she would have known earlier, she would have let him sit next to me so we could talk about running. She was telling me how there was this guy that ran the hurdles who she was reading about in the Orlando Sentinel and kept hearing about on the news. I told her "really" and just left it at that. She never asked me my name or what I did, she just knew I went to the Olympics, then after we de-boarded the plane, she came up to me again with her husband and asked me to sign the back of her plane ticket. She wanted to know why I didn't say anything and that her husband knew who I was. I just told her that I like to lay low.

It felt good to be back at home though. When I entered my room, I had tons of mail and boxes all over the place. I proceeded to open it all up. I had letters of congratulations from representatives in the White House such as Mark E. Udall, 2nd District, Colorado and Mel Martinez from the U.S. Senate representing Florida. I also received a letter from my sprint/hurdle coach from Howard, Carmelia Shivers. I was so excited when I saw I had a letter from her. She was at Howard my freshman and sophomore years, I hadn't talked to her since 2003. I always knew she was keeping close tabs on me from afar, I am happy that I have an address for her now. She had a great relationship with my mom and my uncle Randy. I will write her back as soon as I get a chance.

Not all things have been good though. Something is terribly wrong with my Jag, I had a trunk full of water. The trunk is where the battery and electrical stuff is, so needless to say, it wouldn't start or anything. I just had a tow truck take it over to my guy so he can look at it and fix whatever is the problem, hopefully I will just need a new battery. I don't have a garage here, so before I left I bought a car cover and Aub put it on for me, but due to those strong storms that were blowing through Florida this summer, it stood no chance of staying on.

One bad thing can't possibly blow the high I am still on. It is going to be a very arduous process of unpacking, as I type right now I am looking at a living room full of suitcases and things to be unpacked.

I am doing the Fox Morning Show here in Orlando tomorrow morning, my first engagement in a long list of them, then I will be hoping on a plane to go to my favorite city in America, Washington D.C. where I will be honored by Howard University at Opening Convocation this weekend.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

2008 Is A Wrap!!

The race didn't go very well, I had a lot of problems. I almost fell at the first hurdle and was all over the place for the first four or five hurdles until I got back in to a good rhythm.

This was one of the more difficult warmups I did all season, I think once I got my flight itinerary in my email a couple of days ago, I mentally checked out of the competition.

The end result was a win most importantly, the time 13.25 was decent given the circumstances and the fans were very happy, so if they like it, I love it. I got a very nice trophy to boot. The name for it is "The Cup Of The King", which is pretty appropriate, you can't make that up. The top is a solid 24 karat gold dragon, which is hot!

Now it's time to box up the 2008 season and put it on the shelf next to 2007. Wow, what a season.

I loved it here in Shanghai, it's unfortunate that I have to leave, but I'm sure I will be competing at the meet for the rest of my career.

Now on to the fun part. I have to give a shout out to the tailor at Porro & Porro for the outstanding pieces I added to my wardrobe. I had to buy another suitcase in the hotel lobby to carry all this stuff I came up on here. But the hottest thing is the monogram that I have on my shirt sleeves, absolutely killing! It should be a crime. LOL

The D.O. logo

Friday, September 19, 2008

Shanghai Welcome Dinner/Pre-Meet

Liu Xiang and Yao Ming hosted a welcome dinner out on the Shanghai harbor, we were suppose to be on a yacht, but Yao was too tall to fit on the boat and there was a change of plan.

It was great, they brought me and select other athletes out on the red carpet, I autographed a big poster and did an quick interview with the host for the crowd and media that was present. It was tight, flash bulbs were popping, my type of thing.

Everybody was commenting on how "dressed up" I was, which to me was insane, I had on the same jeans I've been wearing all summer long since I started traveling some two-plus months ago and some all black Nike 360's I've been wearing the same amount of time. I guess that freshly tailor made shirt had them going!

Inside, it was more pictures. Before dinner, everyone was just hanging out playing paparazzi, everyone posing for pictures. I had a great time before dinner started, joking around and just being me.

Dinner tasted great and Liu and Yao were great hosts. This is my first trip to this meet and it is easily the best meet on the entire circuit hands down. The food is the best, they treat you the best, the people are great, I can get suits and shirts made in the hotel lobby (I've run my tally up to seven shirts, three suits and three ties), they rolled out the red carpet literally for your boy and I'm sure the stadium will be jam packed and rocking tomorrow!

Me and Bell
The host Liu and I

For the meet, I'm just going to use the K.I.S.S. method: Keep It Simple Stupid! I learned that one in the School of Business at Howard. I want to close the season the same way I opened it up, with a sub-13 performance and most importantly a win. Let's hope for the best

Happy Birthday Joyce!

Gramma turned another page on the yearly calendar which is always good! If it wasn't for her, I don't know what I would be doing really. If you know my story at all, she played a major role, if it weren't for her watching soap operas when I would come home during my early days in high school, I might have never started running track. I don't think I could have lasted another episode of Days of Our Lives! LOL. I love you and Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday Cream of Wheat Jenkins

Aubrey Herring aka Cream of Wheat Jenkins aka Aub-Rida aka Big Aub hit the big 3-0 today. Damn you are getting old. I'm not at the house so we can pop a bottle of that Dom aka 'Dre LOL. Happy Birthday man.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Shanghai Hero's Day

Today I was joined by 4x100 relay world record holders, Micheal Frater and Nesta Carter (JAM), 400m Olympic Champion Christine Ohuruogu (GBR), her coach and good friend Lloyd Cowan and triple jump Olympic Champion and record holder Francoise Mbango (CAM) as we were all honored during a press conference and lunch with the Major of Shanghai, the president of the federation along with several other key members of China's sporting body.

After being presented to the media, answering a few questions, taking photo's and being presented with Chinese gifts, we headed to a very prestigious Chinese restaurant named Lu Bo Lang. This restaurant was a staple during the Ming Dynasty and has hosted several VIP's such as President Clinton and Queen Elizabeth II.
At lunch, we were joined by Liu Xiang's coach Sun Haiping and Liu's father. I had the pleasure of meeting his father and I passed on my condolences to him and had him pass a message to Liu from me, basically saying get well soon and keep your head up, we have great races to still run together. He told me that Liu is doing well, so that is a good sign.

Sun (far left) and Liu's father (far right)
We ate very authentic and traditional Chinese cuisine, none of that carry-out stuff you find in the States. I immersed myself in their culture, from slurping the soup like they do to eating exclusively with chopsticks, the first time I ever did that. I was doing a very good job at it too, the key is to be patient.
We left there and headed back to the hotel where Veronica Campbell-Brown (JAM) joined Christine, Francoise and I for another press conference. The President of Best Buy, a main sponsor of the meet, presented us with a gift on behalf of his company and we answered some more questions.

I'm taking pictures of you taking pictures of me!
I had several television and newspaper interviews after the press conference. The Chinese are very knowledgeable, especially about the 110 hurdle event and I enjoy talking with them, I know the fans are going to be great on Saturday night.

I'm pretty tired now, my day lasted for about six hours with all of the media stuff which is fine with me, being recognized for your accomplishments is definitely a great feeling as an athlete.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Change The Tail Number On The Flight

Air France provided me with a great flight to Shanghai. I was tired from the night before, so all I did was hop in my business class seat, hit that button and recline my seat all the way to a flat position like a bed. I watched a movie, read my book, enjoyed my German Leibniz Butterkeks (the best cookies in the world) and was tapped for the better part of the flight.

The hotel is here is off the hook. It is right at the track, you hit the lobby, go through these doors and you are in the stadium. Pretty convenient to me.

In the lobby, they have a tailor shop where they make dress suits and shirts from scratch. So you know me, I was on it immediately. I went in, got my measurements from the guy, picked out all the fabric I wanted to use and he is going to have two suits and three shirts, French cuffed with the monogrammed D.O. made for me on Saturday. I couldn't think of a better things to buy, when I get home I have a lot of engagements to attend and this will help my wardrobe out. I already be killing, now I'm going to be killing harder! LOL.

Tomorrow, I have a pretty full day. I have a lunch to attend with various media and Liu Xiang's coach Sun Haiping, TV interviews and a press conference. Later on in week, I have a welcome dinner with the Major of Shanghai, Liu Xiang and Yao Ming. Should be fun.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Stuttgart to Shanghai

Last night, the IAAF and local organizing committee brought us another edition of the season finale dinner/party event. Those of you that have been to World Athletic Final know how this is the best party of the year and it didn't fail this season either.

For those of you who haven't been, go on ahead now and book a ticket to Thessaloniki, Greece, that's where this competition will be held next season and tell them you're a guest of D.O., that will get you in (allegedly).

I'm heading out this afternoon going back to Asia for the last competition of the season. I'm going over for the Shanghai Golden Grand Prix, I've never been to Shanghai to compete, I went there in 2006 for a Nike commercial shoot with Liu Xiang.

I took a few pics last night, but my camera died and I only got a couple shots.

Gobo Speng, D.O. Speng and Joel (pronounced Joel not Yo-El)
Me and Chandra Stirrup (with Durst and Larry in the back). I was getting it, I think I broke more of a sweat at the party than I did getting ready for the race!
2/3 of Hemingway HouseWish I could have gotten more pictures. My camera hasn't seen the charger since I left home two months ago and the charger is at the house, maybe someone will have a compatible one I can use.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Closed The Door On 'Em

I woke up this morning with some great info, USC beat the bejesus out of Ohio State. Joel was sick at breakfast. So I woke up already with some good news, then it was time to get the outcome I wanted in a situation that I fully controlled. I can't control what USC was going to do, but I can control what David Oliver is going to do.

Shut down the stadium in the fashion that I wanted to. Went out and won in a not so impressive race, 13.22 (-1.3w). At the end, I was very happy to get the win. My warm-up was great, body felt good. When I walked out to the track though, that chill hit me something vicious. My nose started running non-stop when we got out there! I got pump-faked because warming up inside had me totally forgetting how cold it was outside.

I didn't get out very well, but ran a very controlled race, I cleared the field around three and got the job done.

I ran the last lap of honor in the Mercedes Benz Stadium, that was my main focus for this entire competition and I accomplished my goal.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Startlist and Pre-Meet

We have seen better days and weather for competition, here in Stuttgart, it is raining pretty steadily and is pretty cold out. Nonetheless, I am excited and ready to go get the job done out there tomorrow.

Like I said earlier, we are shutting down the stadium, the 110 hurdle event will be the last outdoor event hosted in Stuttgart. I want to close it out with a win.

Lane Draw:
1) Marcel Van Der Westen
2) Andy Turner
3) Ryan Wilson
4) Aries Merritt
5) Ty Akins
6) D.O.T.K.
7) Yo-El Brown
8) Petr Svoboda

Gameplan for the race is fairly easy: Start with a great warmup, hit the track and run as fast as I can, stay within the technique, collect 30 stacks, stay healthy. I want to run a very good time here and keep my good season going.

Joel is doubling in the 200 as well, as he finished off the season as one of the top point scorers in the 200 and the 110s, a pretty awesome double if you ask me, I know I couldn't pull that off.


On another note, it's a great college football Saturday, too bad I will miss the game I want to see. Ohio State at USC. It comes on around 2am here. I'm hoping that USC blows the doors off of Ohio State. Joel has really turned me off to the Buckeyes, so hopefully at breakfast I will have something to talk about.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Oliver/Robles: Part VI, NO GO

Well, I walked downstairs to talk to my manager, and I saw that they had released the startlists for the competition. To my surprise, the World Record holder and Olympic Champion will not be in the competition. I don't know what the reasoning is or what happened, but this is VERY disappointing. Maybe there will be more information later. It looks as if the field lines up like this: D.O., Yo-El Brown (USA), Aries Merritt (USA), Ryan Wilson (USA), Ty Akins (USA), Petr Svoboda (CZE), Marcel Van Der Westen (NED) and Andy Turner (GBR).

Thursday, September 11, 2008

World Athletic Final Stuttgart, Germany

I arrived in Stuttgart the other night, like I said, I had some promotional events on behalf of the IAAF here.

I did a little bit of a photo shoot with some reporters from the AP and IAAF. I then had a press conference at the Daimler Stadium as well.

This year is a unique year for the World Athletic Final, it will be the last outdoor track and field event held in Stuttgart, Germany as they are tearing down the existing stadium to make it a soccer only stadium.

Colin Jackson ran the then world record time of 12.91 seconds on this very track, it also hosted the 1993 World Championships. Aside from those and various other feats accomplished here, the most unique thing I ever witnessed was my first time here in 2006, the green surface for the track. I have seen black, blue, red tracks, but never a green one. I thought that was pretty interesting.

It's a two day event, with competition starting on Saturday. I run on Sunday, the 110 hurdles is the very last event of the competition and the last to be hosted in Stuttgart, I think that is very appropriate. I really want to be the last person to take a lap of honor in Stuttgart, I am going to try my best to do so, it will not be an easy task, but I am up to the challenge.

Brooks and Yo-El Brown arrive today, so we will hit a couple of workout sessions, just to sharpen up a bit. I am very excited for this competition.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


The NFL football season opened up this weekend and I tell you what, if you had David Oliver banking on you, you were out of luck.

The season started off with a resounding THUD for me in fantasy football as well as it did for my team the Miami Dolphins. At least the Dolphins were in it until the end, I think my week was done before any of my players were out of the first half of their respective games.

My team has all of a sudden been depleted with injuries, first and foremost, my star quarterback Tom Brady is out for the season, Aub-Rida hit me up while I was at Disney and told me that and I couldn't believe it. Where do I go from there? This is two seasons in a row my starting QB goes down in week one.

Willis McGahee doesn't take a snap, Dallas Clark goes down in the first quarter and Jamal Lewis' hamstring has him running so timid through the hole that I feel I can lay a good pop on him and he'd go down.

I had one double digit scorer and that was my "steal" of the draft, Chris Johnson of the Titans, who scored 11pts, but he was on the bench. Bad General Managing skills. It's week two and I'm already scouring the wavier wire for players, it's not looking good, but at least its early.

I got trounced by my best friend Kelvin Doyle aka "Big K", 83-35, I'm glad I am overseas so that I don't have to hear from him or from Murph because his team is the Jets and they beat the Dolphins, so being in Europe is my saving grace, hopefully they will be on to something else when I return home in a few weeks.

I might have to fire myself mid-season if this fantasy thing doesn't turn around quick.

I'm off to Stuttgart a day earlier than expected, the IAAF wants me to do a promotional thing for the World Athletic Final, so I'm going to hop on the train later this afternoon, it's only a three hour ride, so once again, I will kick back in my first class seat and relax!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Disneyland Paris

Yesterday, a few of the U.S. team that will remain in Paris for a variety of days, headed out to Disneyland Paris. My favorite throwers, Aretha Thurmond and Kristin Heaston were there along with Aretha's son Theo (2020 Olympic hurdle champion), Mechelle Lewis, the worlds greatest athlete, Hyleas Fountain and myself.

In Orlando, I train at Disney everyday. Basically, I go there everyday. I have yet to spend time in the theme parks there.

I woke up late and hit lunch, everybody hit me with "D.O. you want to hit Disney?" I was like "Yeah, sure I'm not going to do nothing today anyway." So I had basically ten minutes to shower and get dressed because they were ready to leave.

It was about an hour train ride there. We spent from about 3pm until the park closed at 9pm out there. We rode several rides, ate and just had a good time. I'm glad I rolled out and experienced some more stuff in Paris.

Here's a few pics:


My favorite throwers and young Theo

Aretha definitely caught us slipping before this pic! I don't know what was so funny.Ride action

Hyleas was throwing water on your boy in that previous pic, so I caught her slipping and double knotted that hoodie on her while she was tearing this ice cream up.

Space Mountain had the best ride in the entire parkI basically finished the day off with a chocolate crepe, it was banging too!

By the time we left there, me and baby Theo was about on the same mission, tap city! All of our eyes were heavy on the train ride back. It was so much fun, I'm really glad I went out.

Today, didn't have very much going on, just had a good hurdle training session. The meet organization is still taking very good care of us, they made sure we got a car to the track and everything set up there. I think only Hyleas, Kristin and myself are still here, I need to find them to see what we are going to do about dinner.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Post Meet Dinner/Afterparty

Like I said in the previous post, the meeting organization set up for us to have a nice dinner and after party at a place called L'Etoile. The place was right off the Champs D'Elysees, right around the corner from the Arc D'Triumph.

Before we got from our hotel in the Port D'Orleans section of town, they had us on a couple of double decker buses and we toured around the city and the main places of interest in Paris.

Le Tour D'Eiffel of course
Arc D'Triumph

The biggest Louis Vuitton store in the world! Of course I'm going to go tear that down before I leave.
The dinner was nice, it was more of a typical European cuisine. I wasn't in to it very much, so you know my motto, when all else fails, find a McDonalds. I found one about a five minute walk from where we were and the whole U.S. team had eaten there by the end of the night.

It was a very fun time. Intermingling with the athletes from the other countries and just spending time hanging out with your friends from the team is always a fun break from doing what we do on a regular basis.

Coach Karen Dennis from Ohio State was the women's coach.

My main man Steve Simmonds was the men's team coach, he use to run those sticks back in his day.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

DecaNations Results

This meet went as to planned. I didn't run fast, only 13.42, but I won by three tenths of a second. The French guy came second and everybody else ran 14 seconds. They only supplied us with two hurdles for the warm-up, so I didn't get a sufficient enough warm-up for my liking, so I decided I was not going to push it too hard in the race. I got out and ran well for half the race, then went in to a bit of a shut down mode. I got us the seven points for the win, that was the most important thing.

As a team, we won the meet, Germany was second, they did very well in both pole vault events and France was third. We had some good results individually as far as wins. The times were not so impressive as we were dealing with some tough headwinds in certain instances.

I love this competition, I found myself screaming my lungs out for my other teammates, this is the true meaning of competition as a team. The fans here are great, they really loved me. I received more of an applause than the French runner did. Afterwards I took all the time it needed to sign all the autographs and take all the pictures. I even threw my uniform top in to the crowd. I had an awesome time out there. I think that the sport of track and field would be better off if they had more team scoring type events.

Now they are throwing us a big dinner down on the Champs-Elysees, it should be fun, I will definitely remember to bring my camera (allegedly).

Team Trophy