I’m just going to talk about running for a minute and then I’m going back to reading about justice and the environment and then some knitting and TV watching.
Running. I’m doing a lot of it these days as training ramps up for the Lake Placid Half-Marathon in June. This past Sunday we (that is, Team in Training Brooklyn) ran the Roosevelt Island 10K — that’s 2 loops of a silly sliver of land between Manhattan and Queens. It had all the things that go with racing: bib numbers and water station and chip timing and getting up at 6 on a weekend to ride the subway for an hour in order to run for an hour. Or an hour and one second as my official chip time recorded. And then the tram and the subway home.
The thing about this race is that I ran fast. Faster that I’ve recorded before (and I keep pretty good, anal records about distance and time, in the same spreadsheet that I record the money I spend and coop shifts worked and for a time, metrocard swipes). Faster that I would have guessed I could have run for 6 consecutive miles. I think it’s half the race environment and the little bit of competitiveness I have in me (get past the woman in pink! she’s the worst!), and half that I probably spend more time standing and waiting for cars to pass that I can account for when I run in the neighbourhood.
But here I am now, excited about running fast. About clocking a time that I’m a little floored by. This doesn’t completely fit with my image of myself…but I’m getting there. After the first (and only other race) that I ran, in Philadelphia with Goliath, I was grumbly. It seemed ridiculous to get up early and drive to a place and then stand around and then run five and then drive home–I can leave the front door and run 5 miles and be home in less than an hour. But this Roosevelt Island race didn’t feel that silly; I don’t know what clicked. Maybe it’s having the team (see below)?
One other thing is that it was wonderful to go to a part of the city that I had never been to. And to have Eleanor Friedberger in my head all day:
I felt that way too, about the Saturday morning run in Bay Ridge the other week. There’s this great waterfront path, that goes under the Verrazano Bridge that I didn’t know about.
I certainly haven’t spent much time in Bay Ridge, and it was great to take more ownership of my adopted town by running on a new part of it. The start of the run was by the Owls Head water treatment facility, and so I had different Eleanor Friedberger stuck in my head that day.
I think that part is the most exciting to me: I know this place. I ran it. I used my own power to move my body through this place in the world. When Naomi and I were in the cab back from the airport after our trip to Puerto Rico, we were driving along Eastern Parkway towards my house, and as we passed Buffalo ave she asked where we were and I was like “This is my running route. I know where we are.”