Sunday, August 31, 2008

RACE REPORT: Manhattan (14.2 Mile) "Training" Run.

DISTANCE: 14.2 miles
DATE: Sunday, August 31, 2008
TIME: 7:30am
LOCATION: 222nd St. & Broadway, NY, NY

Barely a full day after I moved, I was shlepping out of Bonnie's bed to meet Scott downstairs. I drove back to Bonnie's house yesterday (Saturday) because she was still in California, because i still had her house keys, because her cat (and imaginary fish) needed feeding, and because I just did not want to have to get up at 3am to drive to NYC.

I met Scott downstairs at 5am, and from there he drove us to find a parking spot on near 90th and the west side. We hopped on a cab, and asked the cabbie to take us all the way to 222nd Street & Broadway. The start of the race. Columbia University is there and we also saw a few runners, but we were one of the first. I had nothing to check at this point except for perhaps my left over Red Bull, and like a joker, I wrapped the baggage tag (which was even larger itself than the Red Bull) around the can. I think that between Friday's move, Jack Rabbit and the 20-miler the week before, and now this, that it's safe to say that Scott and I were joined at the hip the last two weeks.

The bathrooms at the track n field in Columbia U. were incredibly nice. It's funny the things people remember. Like synchronized shitting....but I'll leave that one alone.

There was some crazy homey with the mega phone who kept asking people to raise their hands in the air like every 7.8 seconds. We were directly beneath the El train. To start off the race we actually had to touch the first steel-girder to the Hudson bridge. This was as a custom to the race. Even here I had to be competitive and touch the girder behind that one, just to say that I went further in the end.

As the race began I noticed someone else wearing the Nike provided red numbered shirt for this evening's other race. She mentioned that she was doing this race, because she was unable to attend the other race. She will not get a medal, and excuse me, but isn't that like paying twice to just race once??

The weather outside was fairly nice. Pretty cool. It might have been as low as 64 degrees with little humidity too. There was a pace car playing Rocky music while the homey, who was inside, was exclaiming some rap-like shit to all "his running homeys". What Cheese.

The first part of the run, was run through not so nice parts. At one point (was it 188th street) we made a left and went up this incredibly quick steep couple of blocks.

This was yet another run where my iPod did not have any juice/songs on it. Long story. But it was okay. I found plenty of people to talk to along the entire course with.

The temperature began to start warming up, especially as we made our was down the West Side Highway. I am glad that the race started when it did.

I definitely was feeling pretty good even after finishing. They gave us a medal, bagel halves, a ceramic mug, a travel alarm clock, and a pretty nice tshirt.

We finished up in Battery Park and walked another mile or so, till we got to the train station. On the way there though a funny thing. Scott, who has a knack for always giving charity to the homeless, walked past someone like that without giving anything. Just as he was beginning to feel bad about this, up ahead is an elderly African-American sitting in a wheel chair with a coffee cup in his hand and sunglasses on. Scott immediately felt it was time to redeem himself, so he took out a dollar to give to who he thought was homeless. They guy in the chair waved him off however. He was not cripple, and did not want his money. Oh, and the coffee cup? Yeah. Not a holdout cup at all. It actually had coffee. How embarrassing!


Anonymous said...

The morale of the story: "Never assume about an African-American drinking coffee". I don't know what that really means, but since I know nothing about running, this sounds more profound than anything else I could say.
Your blogs are very interesting and show that running brings happiness. Too bad I am 92 years old and I can't run anymore.

Alex Gonzalez said...

LOL. No actually the morale does not go deep to include race. But you came close. The morale actually is, "Never assume that just because a person is assuming a posture that may lead one to think that he/she is homeless, that they actually are." In New York (not sure of other cities), a lot of homeless people will sit holding out a cup (usually an empty coffee cup from a garbage can) asking for money.

The sad part that's not mentioned here, is that there is any poverty at all in this great country. It's really an issue, and it saddens me to see this happen to anyone of any color, race, gender or religion.