Tuesday, May 10, 2011
48 hours in MY COUNTY!!
True Confessions: I always think my car’s butt is bigger than it is and leave extra room for it when I pull into a parking spot. What does this say about me? Poor car body image? Vehicular Body Dysmorphia (VBD).
VBD is a disease I just invented. I’m going to patent it as soon as I figure out if I need to do that through the CDC (Center for Disease Control) or the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles).
Primary symptom: If you maintain an irrational belief that you have a big car butt, a badunka-trunk, in spite of evidence to the contrary.
At the gym on Wednesday, I watched a boy fall asleep on a treadmill. He flipped off and face-planted on the moving tread, while dozens of students looked on in breathless horror. It was final exam period, and I knew I was about one gulp of coffee away from doing the same. The boy, whom I’d like to call Victor, for victory, leaped to his feet and resumed his running, playing it off like nothing had even happened, the way a squirrel does when it falls out of a tree. Everyone around him breathed again, sighs of relief. If there is extra oxygen in the troposphere today, it is because of the dozens of students at P-W Gym who ceased to breathe for 15 seconds. Let the record show.
But anyway, watching this boy FALL ASLEEP WHILE RUNNING struck me because, in the story of my life, it might offer a bit of foreshadowing.
On Friday, I am doing the tautologous complement of this statement:
“I am running for 48 hours.”
A tautology is when a=a.
If I had been the one to invent logical syllogisms, I wouldn’t have called it a “tautology.” I would have called it “nothing to see here, people.” Because a is obviously a; it’s not even worth saying.
So if a is “I am running for 48 hours,” then its complement is “I am running for 48 hours.” And then you think, well how is this a logical syllogism if you arrive at a conclusion that does not seem to be in any way logical? Nobody runs for 48 hours.
But people do. I googled it. And there is an opportunity to try it in MY HOME COUNTY—Sussex, New Jersey—this weekend. I have to run it. It’s too big to wrap my imagination around. It will be edifying.
The race is a little steep, and I don’t mean topographically but rather monetarily, so I am imagining that I am going somewhere exotic, instead of the 0.8ish-mile loop 20 minutes away from my home that I will run for 2 days…Man, when I say it like that it sounds SO fun.
I’m excited for my runner friends to meet the bovine lineages of Sussex—the cows whose forefathers watched me run in my youth. And that smell? It’s the anaerobic decomposition of corn. It will grow on you. And remain in your clothing.
Here is my race plan:
Don’t get greedy with the miles early on. Pace myself.
Eat before I’m hungry.
Drink before I’m thirsty.
Think about what I’m doing as little as possible.
The other day, I went running with my 9-year-old nephew. We went for an easy 20 minutes, and, though he did a spectacular job and I was very proud of him, I think he was disappointed that he didn’t last longer.
Reflecting upon the run, my dad offered some insight. “Little kids cannot accurately perceive their limits. They think they can run all the way to California.”
That statement gave me pause because I often think I could run all the way to California, and I’d like to do that sometime. And you know, with the 48-hour run starting on Friday, I wondered what level of interpretation I should read that statement. What are you trying to say to me, Dad? I like that kids think they can run forever, and I’d like to hold onto that a bit longer and keep trying to do so. I don’t ever want to be someone’s limiting factor—imputing my mature sensibilities into their ambitions, telling them they can’t do what they think they can. Because maybe they can. The reason I first ran a 100 was because I thought I could, and nobody told me I couldn’t.
But without a doubt, this run will be a humbling experience.
Welcome to my town, y’all! We’re going to have a great time.