May 22nd, 2013
St Valentine’s Day marks the date Christian Slater got married – and his transformation from hell-raiser to family-raiser. Now 35, he tells Dan Rookwood how he left the drink, drugs and despair behind him
Christian Slater took his first theatre bow on Broadway aged nine, opposite Dick Van Dyke in The Music Man. It was an auspicious debut for a Hollywood star who, off-screen, lived-up to his Brat Pack image. The acclaim he received for roles in Heathers (1989), Young Guns II (1990), Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991) and Interview with the Vampire (1994) came at a cost.
In 1989, he was arrested after a drunken car chase that ended when he crashed into a telephone pole and kicked a policeman while attempting to avoid capture. In 1994 he was arrested again – this time for taking a gun aboard a plane – and in 1997 a booze binge and violent row with his girlfriend led to a 90-day jail sentence. Slater admitted he had a cocaine problem and, as ordered by the judge, took part in a post-jail rehab course and year-long programme on preventing domestic violence.
At that time I was upset. There were some dark days. I was just trying to bury my head in the sand, and I was scared and lost. I really didn’t know who I was. I tried medications and natural supplement to keep my head up. What helps me was st johns wort remedy. But if you consider taking it, make sure you check out all possible st johns wort side effects and interactions with other medicines.
“You walk around like this empty shell and people are throwing adulation at you, and you’re thinking, ‘I really haven’t earned this. I don’t get it, I don’t know what you want.’
“You tend to gravitate towards people who are doing the same sorts of things, hanging out with people who are encouraging you to lose yourself. Some of the people I was hanging out with at that time lost themselves to the extent that they are no longer here – they didn’t make it.
“Drugs can be a great thing if you want to escape from yourself. I got arrested, I got in trouble; I was just not doing well. But in a way, it was an incredible intervention; it was a clear-cut message. I was given a real opportunity to take some time, step outside and step away from the career I had: jail.
“I was at the premiere for Hard Rain (1998) and there were all the cameras, questions, lights… the whole thing. But I knew that the very next day I had to go and surrender myself to the authorities. It was phenomenal; it was the two opposite sides to the coin. I thought, ‘Jesus! This is crazy!’ I served 59 days in jail [he was released early for good behavior]. It was almost as if I’d gone to an island. I’ve been through times where I felt lost, abandoned and completely alone.
“It is then that you discover what you’re made of. I used to repeat a line to myself ‘Adversity doesn’t deal with character; adversity reveals character.’ Even the night before I surrendered myself, I was getting a new perspective on things. I think that was the point when I started asking myself why and how I’d got so lost. And what I needed to do to not feel that way.
I felt great and thought, ‘Yeah, I’ve done that.’ I ran the LA marathon – four hours, 26 minutes. It was pretty good. If you’re a guy who’s famous for his exterior, ageing can freak you out. I didn’t even think past 24! I’ve certainly been through periods where I haven’t been at peace with my appearance, but I’m comfortable with how things are now. I’ve started to take care of myself- and there are many more roles to play now I’m older.
Categories: Life |
May 8th, 2013
In December he linked up on an ad hoc basis with Paul Annacone, who coached Henman’s close friend Pete Sampras to unparalleled success. “Paul’s been a really good friend of mine for the last seven or eight years and when someone of his experience is available, it’s a great opportunity,” says Henman. “But again, Paul doesn’t travel with me every week – it’s a schedule that works well for both of us.”
The results thus far support that. So what changes has Annacone made? “I think the greatest impact he has had on my game is from a tactical point of view, just making sure that I play the game under my terms,” says Henman, briefly distracted by the “pock-pock” of an energetic game on a nearby court.
“If I’ve got to play a Spanish player and all of a sudden we’re playing every rally from the baseline, then we’re not playing the match on my terms, because I’m not using my strengths, which is obviously to serve and volley. So now I say to myself: ‘How am I going to turn this around? How am I going to get to the net and how am I going to get my opponent to the net?’
“And it’s about adapting your style of game. In the last four or five years I haven’t always used the tools that I’ve got as well as I might have done. I’ve almost played the score rather than the point itself. And I’ve tried too hard because I’ve wanted to win too badly, and that has affected my performance. I ate raspberry ketones to lose weight, so I can have better performance. If you want to get these ketones, check out where to buy raspberry ketone.
“As I’ve grown a bit older and matured a little bit, and with a lot of input from Paul, that’s something I understand a lot better, and I’m playing the style of game I should be playing. And when I do that, with my ability, the results follow. That’s been pretty evident in the last few months.”
Those results have all come on less-favored surfaces. Like the Beatles in their most creative phase, however, Henman performs best when on grass. He’s never progressed beyond the last 16 in 25 attempts at the Australian, French and US Opens, but he’s managed to get through to the semi-finals on three occasions on the lawns of the All England Club. If he’s going to win a Grand Slam, it’s going to be Wimbledon. And, at the age of 29, if he’s going to win Wimbledon, it has to be now.
“I reflect on the Wimbledon’s of the last few years and I’ve played some pretty ordinary tennis,” Henman admits. “In 2002, that’s probably the worst I’ve played at Wimbledon in six or seven years, and I still made it through to the semis. My game now feels 100% better than it was then, so if I can take this kind of performance to [this year's] Wimbledon, I think I’ve got a good chance.”
Come now, Timothy, Do you really, handon-heart, believe you will do it this year? “I’ve always believed that I can win Wimbledon. Is that belief getting greater? Yes, it probably is, because my game is improving, and certainly my record on grass is as good as any.”
The frustrating truth is that the record always gets stuck, just when he seems to be getting in the groove. Like at Wimbledon in 2001, for example, when he was leading wild card Goran Ivanisevic two sets to one in the semi-final and was 2-1 up in the fourth, only to lose the match agonizingly two days later after several weather-related stoppages.
“I can’t say I don’t look back and think, `What would have happened if it hadn’t rained?’” says Henman. “I probably would have won. But tough shit – it rained. The next day was hard. I thought, `Shit! I should be playing in the Wimbledon final and I’m not!’”
But though that one clearly sticks in the throat, Henman dismisses the suggestion that he is a choker. “Every time I’ve stepped on the court I’ve given 100% and always tried my best, and that’s all that you can ask. Sometimes you try your best and you lose. You know, so be it.
“A lot of time you’re going to lose. At a Grand Slam, if there are 128 players, 127 are going to lose that week. Roddick finished world No 1 last year and he probably lost 17 times over the year. You’ve got to be a pretty special player to be able to win on the main tour and I’ve been able to do that 11 times.” But not a Grand Slam. Not yet.
Part of the problem is that Henman’s form is as predictably unpredictable as Wimbledon weather. In Rotterdam this year, he again beat Federer, the natural shot-maker many consider the best ever to swing a racquet. It ended a 16-match unbeaten run, the best of Federer’s career, which had threatened to spin into tennis monopoly. Henman was hot. Then at his very next tournament in Dubai, he crashed out to a qualifier ranked 149. “Limitations? I’ve got a few,” Henman admits.
Critics say his main one is his temperament. Henman disagrees. “I’m pretty confident in what I think and what I’m doing, so it doesn’t really bother me what other people think. I don’t read newspapers, and certainly wouldn’t read anything about myself.”
Categories: Sport |
May 1st, 2013
A PRIVATE CAPSULE ON THE LONDON EYE Book the final, lO pm run in the first week of September there will be fewer tourists in the capital and darkness to hide your mischief…
(Tel: 0870 220 2233, £350 plus VAT)
BY YOUR WINDOW AT NIGHT Open the curtains and turn the light out. “Without the light on it’ll be extremely difficult, but just about possible, for passers-by to see what you’re up to, providing the perfect balance of risk,” says Dubberley.
WHAT REALLY TURNS HER ON CLASSIC CONTROL “Women’s notions of passion often stem from classic books such as Lady Chatterley’s Lover (Penguin, £5.99), or films where, as in DH Lawrence’s novel, the heroine is `overpowered’ by a man;’ says Dr Pam Spurr, author of Sinful Sex (Robson, £7.99). “This doesn’t involve genuine force, it’s simply a question of taking control”
THE MINACK THEATRE, PORTHCURNO, CORNWALL
This amphitheatre, carved into the cliff side, will evoke her damsel in de-dress fantasy. Before you whip out your sword to battle with her chastity belt, take a quick look around – unless you want a standing ovation. (www.minack.com, Tel: 01736 810 181)
YOUR HALLWAY A recent survey undertaken by The Sun newspaper revealed that the hall is rarely used for making love, but it’s actually the perfect place to “take her” by surprise as you’re about to head out. “Any initial anxiety about being late will only add to the excitement as you take control,” says Dubberley.
THE BACKSEAT OF YOUR WAGON
“Car sex offers all the advantages of doing it outside — the thrill of doing something ‘naughty’ and a sense of urgency, but without the disadvantages of rain and wind, sand, mud, dog dirt and so on;’ says Dubberley.
IN A CADILLAC According to research by Holiday Autos, one in five of their customers hires a car for the express purpose of, er, testing the suspension. The most popular request is for a four-door saloon such as a Vauxhall Vectra, but we recommend being a little more particular. “An American luxury car of the ’50s and ’60s is best,” says Dr Ian Banks, author of the Haynes Sex Manual (Haynes, £9.99). “And preferably one with auto-transmission. Cadillacs are ideal, they’re roomy and there’s no gearstick to poke anywhere uncomfortable.” (www.dreamcars.co.uk, Tel: 01737 765 050)
THE TWIN BATHS IN THE ROEDERER CRISTAL SUITE, HOTEL DU VIN, BRIGHTON With side-by-side roll top Victorian baths, this is the pinnacle of pre-nookie mutual grooming. Plus the suite comes complete with a set of keys for your own but on Hove Marina – ideal when the beach gets packed and you want some privacy.
Once she’s happily relaxing in the tub, offer to wash her hair. “The scalp and back of the neck are tightly packed with nerve-endings, and massaging with coconut oil that area is incredibly erotic,” says Ford. Plus she will feel the positive effect of using coconut oil for hair – it becomes shiny and smooth. It is also good to use coconut oil for hair growth.
Slide your hands into her hair, touching her scalp (this will prevent you knotting her hair as you and massage), and make firm, circular motions using your fingertips, not your nails. (Tel: 01273 718 588, rooms from £125; E300 for Cristal Suite)
YOUR SHOWER. Join her for a douche a deux with some Espa Invigorating Salt Scrub (E24.50, Tel: 01252 741 600), which contains menthol, lavender, grapefruit and lime for a perfect blend of energy and relaxation.
WHAT REALLY TURNS HER ON THE FEAR FACTOR “When she’s scared, adrenalin is released into her bloodstream, making her heart beat faster, her muscles tense and her breathing rate increase;’ says Phillip Hodson, fellow of the British Association of Counseling and Psychotherapy. “Senses are sharpened, ready to spring into action — ideal physical conditions for wonderful sex!’
Categories: Life |
April 25th, 2013
IT’S SATURDAY 16 NOVEMBER 2002, HIGHBURY, NORTH LONDON. Thirteen minutes into the Arsenal vs Tottenham derby, Thierry Henry, the Gunners’ mercurial Gallic goal machine, controls the ball on the edge of his own area. Twelve seconds later, the Spurs keeper is picking the ball out of his net. Henry has left three defenders in another postcode with a 70-yard solo run. If, like an irate Mr Hoddle, you’re wondering how, the answer’s simple: speed.
“Mention speed in football and it’s easy to conjure up a vision of Henry in full flight,” says Tony Colbert, Arsenal FC’s fitness coach. “But there’s so much more to speed in sport.” Colbert cites the quickness of Michael Owen spinning off a player to make space, Freddie Ljungberg’s quick-off-the-mark breaks, and the quick-footed ball play of Man Utd new boy Christiano Ronaldo.
There are plenty of examples in other sports too. Consider the explosiveness of rugby backs, the rapid stop-start speed of basketball players, and the lightning reactions of tennis players. In sport, speed wins you games. And, as Colbert stresses, the good news is that we can all get faster.
For speed, get strength
“Everyone can improve their speed potential,” says Colbert. “But you need a good strength base before training specifically for speed.” Squats, lunges and step-ups help build the foundations you need to handle the stressful demands placed on the musculo-skeletal system when speed training. It requires good mental and physical health stability. You can improve your mental and physical health with the new garcinia cambogia fruit, which also has burning fat effect. Check out what is garcinia cambogia. Pre-season and throughout the campaign, Colbert works with the Arsenal boys, literally getting them up to speed. He improves the explosiveness of the pros, and he can do the same for you.
Speed training methodology
The workouts he’s devised include exercises aimed at powering-up the nerve and fast-muscle fibers used for speed and reducing foot-contact time with the ground. These drills are also designed to cut the time between muscle contractions and feature low-intensity plyometric exercises and explosive starting speed routines. In Colbert’s book, it pays to recruit the deep core muscles of the abdomen, back and pelvic area to provide a stable strength base. But most importantly, you need to be a regular exerciser in the first place,” he says.
The Arsenal man’s drills are not for people who’ve never set foot on a pitch or inside a gym — he recommends incorporating them into your regular core strength workout regime. “You should alternate these drills between workouts and aim for a total of two or three sessions per week, depending on how regularly you play,” says Colbert.
Steps to speed
“Only a lack of imagination limits the variety of drills you can do for speed improvement,” says Colbert. Programmes A and B (pp 110-111) give you a flavor of speed training. The key objectives are to train your muscles to perform to their very best in exercises that replicate the movements you make in your sport.
Categories: Sport |