Tuesday, April 21, 2009

In Other Marathon News: Pickin' and Runnin'

No, I'm not talking about pickin' your nose. You should know if you read me that the best method of expelling boogers from your nostrils is by snot rocket.

No, I mean pickin' something else. I mean pickin' a banjo.

There is a phrase among banjo players that when you are in the act of playing the banjo you are pickin' and grinnin' -- because playing the banjo is so joyfully stimulating.

Well, some guy from Knoxville decided that he'd go ahead pick his banjo on the run. And not just any run, but John Longmire, 46, will pick his banjo during the 2009 Country Music Marathon in Nashville this Saturday.
"Though he has played banjo for 33 years, Longmire has only been running for five. He estimates the instrument will add an hour to his time of 4:20:39 last year."
Just to give you an idea of what this means, a performance quality banjo of the type used for bluegrass style music can weigh up to 20 pounds. My banjo weighs about 10 pounds. A banjo similar the one Gibson supplied Longmire probably weighs about five pounds.

Playing the banjo alone for five hours would be tiresome--and I don't just mean for your ears. I don't even want to know about the chaffing situation with a shoulder strap and the back of the banjo rubbing against his body. Not to mention the damage to his poor fingers.

Then there is the little matter of adding an hour to your best marathon time.

In short, this man is an idiot, but for a good cause.

17 comments:

Xenia said...

I think you've just revealed your true identity to all of us now. You've professed your own idiocy in previous posts, so who's to say you aren't stupid enough to try this. Good luck, Viper. Or should I say John?

Al's CL Reviews said...

I feel bad for the people around him having to listen for 5+ hours.

X-Country2 said...

A banjo? You'd think a woodwind instrument would be more efficient.

Lauren said...

I lived in Knoxville for a couple of years. This man is an idiot. He's probably going to wear orange and white checkerboard running shorts too, because they all do in Knoxville. God bless him though.

tfh said...

Geez, and he's not even getting a very nice banjo out of it.

Anyway, I would only find this impressive if he were playing the banjo and the harmonica. And singing.

Nitmos said...

Can you imagine - if you hate banjo music - being unable to escape from this guy for 5 hours during a race? The torment...

Vanilla said...

Banjo music stops being fun and charming after 15 minutes. At a half hour it becomes downright annoying so it wouldn't surprise me if either this guy or his banjo (or both) are broken before the end of the race.

Personally, I'd trip him.

Spike said...

the sad thing is, I'm pretty sure he isn't the first guy to every play a banjo for an entire marathon...

RazZDoodle said...

somewhere there's an appalachia/linear family tree/one-toothed yokel joke in here, but I'm tired and can't find it.

the erratic epicurean said...

i find this more impressive than the old guy in the superman cape or the guy dressed as tarzan or even the preggo ladies. i wanna see you pick & grin & run viper!

Ms. V. said...

I simply have a little crush on you now Viper. First the blister, now the banjo.

Cue up 1969, Buck Owens & Roy Clark.

S said...

Is it weird that I'm kind of excited to look out for him at the race now? I definitely want to see a guy playing the banjo and running. Hope he doesn't suck at it!

Jess said...

What is SO easy about running 26.2 miles that people have to add all these extra features to "challenge" themselves whilst running those 26.2 miles?!

Some guy named John said...

I must be turning into a curmudgeon, 'cuz I think there ought to be rules to prevent people from doing annoying things like that in races.

On the other hand, I guess I do admire anyone who is physically capable of the feat ...

nwgdc said...

Was anyone else very fearful clicking the "My Banjo" link?

Still haven't clicked it. I figure...even if it IS a banjo, it's still phallic enough to have some sort of connotation in the mind of Viper.

Vava said...

Did you ever take part in a duelling banjo scene with Randy Travis in your youth? Or perhaps that's WHY you chose this "guitar's poor cousin" as your instrument. Don't get me wrong, as a guitar player I have a tremendous amount of respect for banjo players: not only do they have to have fingers to fury, but must also deal with all of the ridicule that comes along when other first learn that they are banjo players...

Ted said...

It is a heaven send that I am Deaf and I wouldn't have to hear him play banjo for five hours.