The Runner Who the Race Outran

10.09.07 10 years ago 16 Comments

I mentioned last week that I would be running the Chicago Marathon this past Sunday, but I never said I would do it well. In fact, I was one of the more than 10,000 runners not to finish before they stopped the race, but not for such inglorious reasons as heat exhaustion or death.

Does this look like someone who would succumb to the heat? What with the tough looking wrapped leg, administered to treat the pulled hammy that made me drop out after 14 miles. It nicely capped an injury-plagued year of training, in which I had plantar fasciitis in my right foot for three months (just like Terrence Newman!).

Totally pussying out didn’t ruin my entire trip. Yes, it was hot as dogcrotch, but there was always the pre-race expo! A font of organizations tangentially linked to running hawking their overpriced wares. What I loved most was the Volkswagons on the showroom floor (what better message to send to runners than that they need to fucking drive more?) and the Inspiration Zone, replete with a basketball hoop, Madden on the Wii, and a guy to clock the speed of your fastball (again, runners, get a new goddamn hobby).

Here was some giant lung – at first, I thought it was a liver – to support, I don’t know, rights for disembodied giant plush organs with arms and legs. As with most things, in the Maj version, it would be small and black.

Finish Line Wine is for finishers, Ape. You may not sup of the plonky, paint thinnery goodness!

You may say that the injury was a mixed blessing because dropping out after an hour and a half enabled me to make it to the bar in time for the kickoff of the Steelers and Seahawks game. I say it’s totally worth it. Reader Pat D. and friends welcomed me to Durkin’s, one of the Steelers bars in town.

Pat is an alum of Miami of Ohio and he let me know that everyone at the school thinks Roethlisberger is a complete hump. In fact, he said when Roethlisberger returned to campus after winning the Super Bowl, one of his friends spotted him at a bar. The friend was wearing a “Drink Like a Roethlisberger Today” shirt, to which Ben was hardly amused, having some heavy get in his face and tell him something to the effect of, “That’s not good for Ben’s image!”

Dick move. Absolutely. But after going 18 of 22 this week without both starting receivers: (jams fingers in ears) lalalalalalalalalala.

Anyway, I also sat out on Waveland Avenue outside Wrigley during the final chapter of the Cubs sweptitude Saturday night.

Of course, I did it up in style, watching the game on a 20-inch TV pointing out from some guy’s apartment with hundreds of other cheap, drunk people. Meanwhile, I couldn’t drink at all because I had an important race not to finish the following morning.

Midway through the game, a young Tribune reporter was milling through the crowd trying to get some color for a feed into a scene story. Having done my share of these, I felt for her. A note to fans: when a reporter asks for feedback on a game, a helpful answer would be “This is so depressing. The Cubs would have a shot if only they didn’t leave 600 men on base” and not, “I ALSO LIKE NOTRE DAME! CAN YOU PUT THAT IN THE ARTICLE?!”

Just a tip.

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