Thursday, March 17, 2011

Your Story: Arley McNeney

BC Wheelchair Sports is inviting all of our members to send us their wheelchair sports highlights from the past 40 years in whatever format they choose. Send us your highlights as a short paragraph, a photo, a video...anything that feels appropriate.

To give you an idea of some of the ways you can represent your wheelchair sport highlight, social media coordinator Arley McNeney (who played on the women's wheelchair basketball national team from 2001 - 2007, winning two World Championship golds and a Paralympic bronze) attempts to turn her wheelchair sports career into a music playlist....without using "Eye of the Tiger."

Arley McNeney

  1. "Sowing Seeds" - Jesus and Mary Chain: Because I didn't play sports when I was able-bodied, I had a lot of catching up to do when I started wheelchair basketball. I was lucky enough to have some great coaches early on who had the patience to help me sow the seeds of a love of sport despite the fact that I was really, really (really) bad.
  2. "Waiting for the Great Leap Forward:" - Billy Bragg: After several years of hard work and coaching, I made the "great leap forward" on to the national team in 2001 at age 18.
  3. "You're a Big Girl Now" - Bob Dylan: Seeing as how my main talent in basketball has always been my height, this has been my sports theme song for over a decade (despite the fact that it's kind of depressing).
  4. "Hello, Timebomb" - Matthew Good Band: "push and push till it hurts!"
  5. "Big in Japan" - Tom Waits: My first major event was in 2002 at the World Championships in Kitakyushu, Japan. Japanese fans gave me little toys and notes that said "You are my favorite because you are very big."
  6. "Clocks" - Coldplay: Not a huge fan of this song, but it was the anthem for the 2004 Paralympics and was played constantly in the athlete's village and so reminds me of the experience. (Some people might say that my Paralympic highlight should be represented by "Mykonos" by the Fleet Foxes, but I'm not sure if having to be rescued by wheelchair rugby players on a Greek island constitutes a highlight or a lowlight).
  7. "Instructions" - Veda Hille (the version from "Auditorium"): Some solid (if bizarre) sport and life advice from one of BC's best indie folk musicians.
  8. "Don't Stop Believing" - Journey: It's practically illegal to create a sports playlist without a little Journey. This reminds me of my varsity career in Illinois, since it was played during every chair skills session.
  9. "Bedlam" - Veda Hille: Something about this song reminds me of the feeling of competing.
  10. "Grounded" - Pavement: Because of some medical issues, my wheelchair basketball career has been on hiatus since 2007. This song not only captures the challenges of being "grounded," but it's also my favourite song to work out to.
  11. "Home for a Rest" - Spirit of the West: Back in Vancouver after 4 years in the American Midwest.
  12. "Crash Years" -- New Pornographers: My BCWSA career takes a new twist when I begin working for the 2010 World Wheelchair Rugby Championships. "There's no other show like it 'round here!"
  13. "Rainy Night In Soho" - The Pogues: A fitting end to any playlist/ sports career. I've been "loving you a long time," BC Wheelchair Sports.

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