Sunday, September 11, 2011

Don't Let a 55 Year Old White Guy Beat You

While running recently an event in a race long ago came to mind. I think it was a race from the Yale tennis courts around a 5k route and back. A shapely female runner was having trouble with the heat and her jacket that she was in the process of removing as I passed her. At that moment I blurted out what was on my mind. It was one of those thoughts you would never mention but under the strain of having half the race behind us I said, "Don't let an 85 year old white guy beat you." Toward the end of that race as most runners do I attempted to expend the last little energy in my last minute sprint. For a few moments it seemed as if I was really flying when the women I had made my remark to went sprinting by me as if I were standing still. I saw her disappear in the crowd where friends were complementing me when out of that group stepped the fleet passer. She placed a hand on my shoulder and with a laugh in her throat she said, "Thank you for your remark back there. It was exactly what I needed."
I still, 6 or so years later smile when I think about that incident.

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