Monday, July 28, 2008

Lonesome Traveler

The heat didn't do it so much as the humidity did. Driving around with the windows down made Saturday seem cool and breezy, but when I stopped at the park trailhead I realized just how still and heavy the air really was. Ten miles in this would be something other than fun.

My skin glistened with sweat just by opening the car door. Less than three miles in, I looked down at my shorts and the unfortunate dark pattern that had formed. Did I just pee myself?

Thankfully, a cloud burst and dropped some rain, which helped mask the situation.

Getting Lonely

Before my run, I finally watched The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Runner, which was two minutes longer than my 10-miler. The movie, released in 1962, is based on Alan Sillitoe's story of the same title, which was published in 1959.

The cheat-sheet version is that Colin Smith (Tom Courtenay) is a disenfranchised (or, if you'll allow it, angry) young man of whom my father would say is in need of a serious attitude adjustment. Yadda, yadda, yadda, I hate the establishment, us vs. them, I'll only play their games for my own gain, and so forth.

Smith is placed in a borstal where he displays a hitherto hidden proficiency at cross-country running. The governor of the institution grooms Smith for a race between the borstal boys and a nearby academy. His backstory about why he's in the reformatory is cleverly interspersed as flashbacks during his training runs.

These moments feel very true to life as I too often drift off in my thoughts about my earlier days in Britain, robbing bakeries and stealing cars, running from bobbies but, as usual, not running fast enough.

Courtenay's characterization of Smith speaks to that fiercely independent streak in me. He has a bit of Luke Jackson to him. He is defiant and punished for it. Though Smith is put in his place, it is a place of his own making.

The Viper gives it a rating of three fingers on the rocks.

Nitmos Is an Idiot
Not that he challenged anyone with his effusive treatise on the wonders of stretchy bands, but I've taken it upon myself to disprove Nitmos's nitwit natterings.

I tore open the package of my new Power Tubes and got started resisting shortly after almost smearing a flock of art festival attendees who crossed in front of me with the audacity of a policeman's guidance, whom I did not see until he yelled at me to stop, snapping me out of my fog of good vibrations. No, officer, I swear I haven't been drinking. Not yet.

As suspected, Nitmos lied. No Brad Pitt torso yet (perhaps some other Brad), but I suppose I'll keep at it anyway. I await my obscenely developed pectorals and utilitarian abdominals. I just hope these stretchies don't also lead to a limpy. (Seriously, Nitmos, there is help.)


Marcy said...

Send em my way when you're done. I'll have uses for them other than exercise :P Remember that scene in Goonies? Perfect for the Mr or the kids or anyone else who annoys me for that matter LOL.

C said...

I love how you wait til Nitmos goes on vacation to mock him. At least it's diverting some of your mockery away from me.

I was going to compare your abs to another Brad (for comedic purposes of course), but I can't think of another one. Except for Brad Garrett, but that's not funny. Stupid useless brain.

S said...

Thank goodness for well timed rain bursts.
And if I was clever I would think of something mocking to say about the power tubes...but sadly...I'm not. So I'll just have to let that one go.

Sun Runner said...

My skin glistened with sweat

That is one of the oddest things I've ever read in a blog written by a man. I'm not sure I'm in the right place anymore.

Alas, you were better than I on Saturday. After attending the beer festival Friday night (and if that wasn't enough, we went to a nearby bar afterward for...more beer) I did not get up at 6:30am like I had planned for my 10-miler. Instead I went out at 9:00 for a five-mile run. At least I did something, right?

Laura said...

Stretchy bands fit in my carry on well when I travel, but they're just not as satisfying as real weights. Plus, it's really easy to wuss out on a stretchy band (just don't pull it so hard, or stand closer to whatever you're hooking it around), whereas with weights you're either lifting it or you're not.

rundangerously said...

stretchy bands? i'm going to dig my dusty old vhs tape of "loneliness." didn't much like it then, maybe it's improved w/age?