Here we go Ralphie, stay with me. I’d tell you to read between the lines, but that’s gonna be hard when I go all over the map. Actually who needs a map anymore? GPS!
I love hill repeats. A runner can eagle eye that GPS all they want, but on hard hills it doesn’t mean a thing. Just run up and jog down and then do it over and over and over. Somethings are good stuck on repeat. The mind relaxes while the legs fire and the lungs burn. The thoughts? Stupid is as stupid does and sometimes that is just genius.
Set 1: Why must we have automatic toilet flushers? It flushes when you don’t want it to spraying your ass with the stuff you don’t want it to spray and it doesn’t flush when you need it to leaving you to wave your hand in it’s sensor ass face, “HELLO!” Humans are apparently not trustworthy enough to flush their own crap and rightfully so….when was the last time you were in a restroom without automatic flushing? But we trust these people to drive automobiles.
“Are we doing hills today Drea because you love them?” asks Bob.
“No,” sighs Drea, “You should love them too.”
Set 2: So low has expectation of humans to be responsible that we do not trust them to turn a facet ON and then turn it OFF? There might be a wasting of water. Ironic because that toilet is still flushing! Automatic facets deserve the middle finger. The concept is brilliant IF they worked…..the problem is that I sit there waving my hands obsessively at the soap, “SOAP please come out….” IF I am successful on the soap, I wave my hands under facet after facet searching for that one that recognizes me as a human being. The mirrors assure me that my tired face is indeed visible. ”GIVE ME WATER!” I smear my soap hands on my jeans because really do I trust the automatic paper towel dispenser to give it up? Noooooo. It’s like a girls locker room- everyone wants candy and flowers, just do it!
Well that felt good.
Set 3: It is mandatory in some states to have a fuel station employee pump your gas. Brilliant. I cannot turn on my own water in the wash room to wash my hands and yes I saw the sign that asked, “DID YOU REMEMBER TO WASH YOUR HANDS?”….. Well I tried, I tried really hard! I cannot be held accountable to flush my own toilet. I cannot pump my own gas, but last I checked we have electronic check out in grocery stores….and those are not frustrating at all.
Poof. Anyone breathing hard?
Set 4: When getting off an airplane, why is it that some of you think that you should not wait for the people in front of you to exit their row first? The flight landed at midnight. I therefore know that your rump does not have a connecting flight. I don’t see a toddler leaking crap down your silk pants. I am pretty sure your heels can wait for my Nikes to boogie out of my row first. Can I get a Jello Shot? It might be International Mud Day.
Huff. Hills, hard to say no to repeats.
Set 5: Jeneba didn’t do the run off. Why didn’t she do the run off? She not only tied Allyson in the 100 meter finals, but she also tied her in the semi final 200 meters. Did she not believe she would make it? The pressure of National TV- and Oh Prime Time would have LOVED that. Hell, I couldn’t wait. Was the pressure too much? Maybe she didn’t want to get judged, but I know and she must know that she would and will be judge regardless. Lime light is only fun when it’s still making sweet rites, but it goes sour quick. I wish Jeneba had busted her ass down that track- because she is a gloriously talented, beautiful athlete with an amazing smile that carries thighs of lightning. I feel for her, not because of her decline to the very public performance, but because I know- as a runner- she will regret that forever. What if? Even a DNF is better than a Did Not Start.
Pounce and punch. That one felt good.
Set 6: Julia Lucas ran her guts out. She followed an amazing season right into the Olympic Trials. In the 5K finals, she broke away from the pack and front ran with 3 laps to go. I watched her edge out…..edge out….and then I watched her crash. She pushed hard into that last lap, but there was nothing left. She ran draining away as her body seized and failed her mind and heart. Just at the line, Kim leaned in and that was the difference of going to London and staying home. Julia expressed in an interview how much she “blew it.” She said, “Wasted an entire season.” She leveled herself with a fierce hand. The disappointment that we may think others will bestow upon us is kitten kisses to what we dish ourselves. BEEN THERE- only in a much SLOWER situation with much less PRESSURE- but Julia, you are awesome.
Poof! Let me just creep here for a moment.
Set 7: No one wins all the time….FOREVER. Bernard Lagat is my favorite male runner of all time. I think absolutely no less of him for watching Galen finish with an amazing performance. He out kicked the unkickable. Twelve times Bernard as established himself to Galen as the “Man,” but in the magic of Hayward Field, Galen did the unthinkable- out kicked a master in the last 25 meters. It was brilliant. On both ends. It’s OK to get beat.
Drive. These repeats are consistent. No drain of the tank. That is good to feel again.
Set 8: I love Robbie Andrews. Jogging the Eugene bike path, I spotted the very obvious orange shirt toting a bushy head jogging with a stern looking older male figure bald as an eagle and shiny as my recently scrubbed kitchen floor. The eagle flicked his eyes in an icy stare. Robbie gave me that sweet salty smile of “Hello to the person I don’t know.” The next day in his race, he ran as hard as he could- did not make a ticket to London- and puked in a trash can. I love Robbie Andrews.
Set 9: What do you do if you run 7th in the world in the 5K? And then you run the NYC marathon and you bottom out in knee pain, ITBand syndrome, and set back after set back? You cross train and believe in yourself? You run 12 miles a week and push forward under the belief that your greatness will be expressed? You run as fierce as you can and actually still qualify for the Olympic trials 5K final? Yes. You do if you are Lauren Fleshman. You run way behind the pack for the entire 12.5 laps under every eye of Hayward Field and Prime Time. You go have breakfast with Alysia Montano and then you let my vegan omelet stuffed belly say “Hello!”
Hack! OK, we’re just over half way.
Set 10: How is it that someone knows I was wanting that last piece of chocolate and then just as I head to the fridge to retrieve last piece of said chocolate….it’s gone. He sits picking his teeth with a Cheshire grin. You snooze….you lose. Timing is everything.
Umph. Still hitting the same damn number over and over. I know I am not red lining.
Set 11: I sat with my son in the late afternoon. We are both covered in sweat and dirt and sticky fingers from sharing an over sized rice krispie treat. There is a joy on his face from the wholesome goodness of this-tastes-so-good-because-I-am-eating-it-with-you. Life’s sweetness is best shared. There is a joy to cooking and tasting and eating that connects human beings- it is after all communal. Eat-TASTE-Love. I neglect the sticky crumbs of krispy glued to my cheek that kiss my dimples for the better part of the day. Alright, I didn’t know they were there.
Ah, ha! I am not slowing down. I feel OK.
Set 12: Flo Jo’s daughter Mary sings an amazing- truly unbelievable National Anthem at the US Track and Field Olympic Trials. Mary’s performance brings prickles to my skin and a pitter to my heart, much like her mother’s performances brought to the world. Flo Jo passed immortal- “The Fastest Woman Alive.” But those that lived on suffered something quite human- exposure. Running along Pre’s Trail, I spotted Mary Decker. I asked about why she is not being honored at the trials along with other heroic US athletes. Who better than the American Sweetheart of Mary to bring glitz and glamour? She who was more than amazing runs from the truth like many other talented athletes- performance enhancing drugs. The desire to succeed at all costs is an age old lesson. I still think she would have been the best…..and so do most runners. But can she now truly enjoy it? I hope so.
Turn. Pivot. Push.
Set 13: I watch the movie Mirror Mirror with my children. The evil queen gleams at the young Snow White, “It’s important to know when you have been beaten.” My daughter snuggles her head into my chest and wraps and delicious thigh around my hip. In the 1988 Seoul Olympics 100m final, Ben Johnson ran away from Carl Lewis to take the gold. Lewis’s coach described how he abandoned his mantra of “run your own race” and glanced not once, not twice, but three times at Johnson as he slid into the victory spot. Later it was confirmed that Ben Johnson’s urine sample tested positive for performance enhancing drugs and he was striped of his gold medal. Carl Lewis was once again on top- Carl Lewis became the legend. Never believe you have been beaten. Never stop believing.
Pump. Whoof. Yes…Whoof. I’m getting tired.
Set 14: I am finding inspiration in those that I am inspiring. I watch women transform their mind and bodies to accomplish health goals that they did not seem possible. All it took was a little bit of encouragement and care. People will think you can’t be tall if you are short, that you can’t be strong if you are weak, or that you can’t be thin if you are fat. People are constantly proven wrong……and that’s a good thing.
Set 15: Why when I was a kid was I not allowed to wear a peace T-shirt to school? I wanted to wear a Bart Simpson T-shirt (I had two), but those were clearly inappropriate school age attire. I saved up to buy a white cotton T with a pink and purple (shocker) peace sign on it. Out lawed. I’m sorry Texas, is the concept of peace and tolerance not accommodating with No Child Left Behind? The two finger rabbit ear became as contraband as the one fingered bird. Holy Hippie Batman! I wish I had that peace T-shirt still. Let’s signal Robyn with the bird and Batgirl can wear the bunny ears to go get the counterfeit cotton. Yippie Kai Yay Mother Fucker!
“How much time you got left Drea?”
“I got 30 seconds!” In other words I can get one more in.
Set 16: What is the point of having a fabulously fit and strong body that can do 50 push ups and plank on a pinky if you don’t have enough energy to Dance Party all over the living room after a very exhausting two days? Nada! Party on Isla?
Party on Mommy!