So…I’ve been off the radar for a couple weeks… OK, OK… months (just don’t tell the editor). Hunter S. Thompson did that shit all the time and he’s famous (that whole suicide thing notwithstanding). I’m pretty sure we all run to get away from something and that includes deadlines.
Why haven’t I written about running lately? It’s easy; I’m a romantic and there’s nothing romantic about running. Boulder’s “Shirtless Jesus” (Anton) runs with his hair dancing in the wind (I’m guaranteed to run into him at WholeFoods now) and that looks romantic in slo-mo documentaries. And then there’s the “Jerker,” (are commoners really allowed to say that?); Scott Jurek and his amazing story which is admitedly romantic but honestly, what about the rest of us?
I run alone a lot. Why? Because it’s not pretty or romantic…and who are we kidding? Running isn’t pretty or romantic for most of us. Take me for example. If there was one run where I didn’t end up squatting like a baseball catcher with my shorts down trying to do my business while peeing between my ankles I would declare that day a national holiday (I know…try f**king gluten free, I heard). There’s a reason I run in camo people!
Then there’s the whole other family of fluids. Snot rockets, spitting and sweating…where’s the stinking romance? Look at me in my pork-sword shorts with a desperate face like I’m trying to talk to Stephen Hawking about black holes…not pretty.
And the smell…the CDC should have come for my Leadville 100 shorts in hazmat suits. My wife had to take off my shorts during the 100-mile race (don’t ask) and I had this gem to offer: “I can or cannot guarantee what is or isn’t in those shorts.” True love don’t always look romantic or smell like fresh flowers.
So where’s the romance? Let me guess…barefoot running? Haven’t all those people been injured and run back to a pair of Brooks Launch like fat people to KFC? Now that 5-finger shoes are basically the Birkenstocks of running I will assume they are about as romantic as a patchouli oil coated activist. Not that I have anything against activists…Save the Trails Please! The horses could begin by not shitting on them…(they already have me doling out the fertilizer)!!!!!
So…the romance must buried within each of us, tucked inside our thoughts and maybe our actions. The romance for me is in the dirt. It’s such a beautiful place. It’s the world’s best avenue for a mental getaway or recharge. No Facebook political wizards using Jon Stewart YouTube clips as gospel. No cat-photo-hyper Tweets from people we would not allow in our homes. Just me and my own romantic brand of stink wafting lazily on the wind.
I think it’s different for us all. Some of us lose ourselves in shoes (13 pairs of the same shoe), some of us feel the rush of pinning a number to our shorts (where the damn number belongs!) and some of us are just plain tired of sitting in traffic or waiting in our cubicles for Ted from accounting to get his head out of his bacon insulated ass and cut the expense check from the last business trip to Omaha.
OK, maybe I’m not the one to talk romance. I just run. I laugh a lot while doing it. And, when important decisions come up in my life I take to the trails and follow my heart. Oh…see what I did there?