Monday, November 5, 2007

Run Like Pheidippides ... or Not

You know, I didn't think it would be that hard to go shopping for some new running gear this weekend. As Daylight Savings Time is no more, I figured I should have some shiny outerwear to alert cars that I am not in fact a target. So, it is with that motivation I set off to find a reflective running jacket and/or technical shirts.

I also did not want to spend a Brazilian dollars.

I crisscrossed the county in search of something -- anything -- that would work. I was not being picky. However, my idea of reflective does not seem to match that of most sporting gear manufacturers.

Most of the clothing had only nickel-size swatches of Scotchlite. Or just the zipper would be reflective. Almost none had any sort of reflective material on the back. Do these companies not understand night vision?

The one jacket I did find, a Brooks nylon shell, cost $100. Not in this lifetime. My friend suggested I buy a roll of reflective tape and make my own jacket. I'm inclined to a agree. After all that nonsense, I ended up with a plain white long sleeve C9 tech shirt. At least now I have two white shirts to wear instead of my other charcoal gray shirt.


--Need one another reason to hate Oprah? Edward McClelland at explains how Oprah sullied the marathon along with John Bingham. McClelland reminds us that the marathon is a race and just finishing should not suffice as success. It's another entry into the ridiculous jogger vs. runner debate, but he makes some good points.
If the marathon is populist enough for everyone to pin on a number, it's also populist enough for everyone to kick ass.
Right on! Let's all strive to run like a motherfucker. I have some PRs to the right, and I'm going to break every single one of them in the next year.

--Elsa Simcik has a provoking article in the Dallas Morning News about running without aids like music and gels. I'm a anti-iPod runner myself, and when I train I typically avoid water stops and never take energy boosters with me. So, I totally like running more than you do. But get this:
So does that mean that if you need extra help like energy boosters or music that I think you just shouldn’t run at all? Of course not. I’m simply suggesting that runners challenge themselves to enjoy the sport in the most natural way — the way Greek messenger Pheidippides did when he ran those 26.2 miles that started the marathon.
Never mind that Pheidippides didn't run 26.2 miles. And never mind that Pheidippides enjoyed the run so much that afterward he dropped dead.

--Speaking of which, I'm sure most of you have heard the sad news about Ryan Shay. I watched the U.S. men's Olympic Marathon Trials on tape delay. Ryan Hall's move at the 16th mile to clinch the win (and record) was simply amazing. He pretty much emasculated the rest of the field. I was rooting for the fu manchu-ed Brian Sell, who came in third.

--Looking for a winter marathon in a warm place? McNews has it. However, they list the ING New York City Marathon. They must have been thinking it was an El Nino year.

Booze News
--Are we entering a new age of Prohibition? Nick Gillespie at Reason Magazine describes a Neo-Prohibitionist movement in which boozers are under attack and introduces me to perhaps the greatest book title ever: Nanny State: How Food Fascists, Teetotaling Do-Gooders, Priggish Moralists, and other Boneheaded Bureaucrats are Turning America into a Nation of Children.

--The Halifax Daily News conducted some important journalism, which indicates that cheap drink specials may influence heavy drinking. Sounds like my Friday night at my favorite happy hour bar, which has more than 50 beers on tap for $2 a pint until 9 p.m. What'd I'd like to know is why all these Halifaxians are pre-drinking elsewhere when beverages are only a $1.

1 comment:

Ian said...

Yes. I'm quite sure that I don't want to run like Pheidippides, the natural way, especially as it appears that would lead to death by dehydration. But thanks anyway Elsa.

Elsa? She sounds like she's 104 years old.