Hey, you know what I’m going to do tomorrow? I’m going to run a marathon!
Yeah, I really am.
I can see by the expression on your face (I’ve remotely enabled your webcam and can see you right now) that you are surprised by this fact. And you should be surprised, because I have not mentioned this fact in this blog until right now.
Why haven’t I?
Well, because I don’t expect to do very well, mostly. In fact, I don’t plan to do well at all. In even more fact, I’ll go ahead and get explicit and say that I haven’t run more than eight or nine miles at a stretch since the NYC marathon and haven’t trained for the Ogden Marathon at all, really.
Nevertheless, this race is very important, and I am a very important person in it.
I shall now explain why.
Why This Race is Important
While I personally haven’t trained for the Ogden Marathon, it’s been the main thing The Runner has been thinking about for months. She’s trained hard for it, even through a painful hip injury. She’s been thinking (and dreaming) about it.
This race matters to her.
Why? Because The Runner is hoping to qualify for next year’s Boston Marathon tomorrow. Which means she needs to run it in 3:50 or less.
“So what,” I can see you ask (because, as I have mentioned, I am watching you right now), “Are her chances of qualifying?”
Well, the short version is: pretty darned good. Indeed, it is my personal opinion (which is based on how I’ve observed her running condition in the past and present, as well her recent marathon finishing times [when she wasn't dragging me along, that is]) that she’ll finish in about 3:40 with a nice little ten minute buffer for potty breaks.
If her hip doesn’t bother her.
And if the weather is good as the forecast says it should be (it currently looks like Saturday will be the first sunny day in forever here, as well as the last sunny day for forever).
And if everything else goes right.
Basically, I’d say that The Runner has done everything she needs to. if she has a good day tomorrow, she’s going to Boston.
I, on the other hand, will feel quite pleased with myself if I can finish this particular marathon in fewer than five hours.
Why I Am A Very Important Person
If you were to come root for The Runner and me at the Ogden Marathon tomorrow, you would notice that our race bibs show our numbers as being “VIP-29″ (hers) and “VIP-30″ (mine).
“VIP,” I’d like to point out, stands for “Very Important Person.”
I can see (you know why) that you are wondering how it is that the race officials came to recognize us as being the Very Important People we are.
Is it because I am a very famous, beloved, and award-winning blogger? No, surprisingly that is not the reason.
The reason is because I am an oaf.
A long time ago, I took on the responsibility to get both The Runner and me registered for this marathon. I took note of the day registration opened, with the full intent of registering the moment it is possible to register.
And then — because I am, as I have recently mentioned, an oaf — I failed to get us registered in time. By the time I got online, all the regular race slots had filled up.
“That’s OK,” The Runner said, in a voice that told me she was really doing her best to believe that it was OK.
Which was pretty much the time I discovered: there were still VIP slots available. “Well, that’s awesome, because I am very self-important,” I thought to myself, and went to register.
As it turns out, in this case “VIP” simply means, “willing to spend four times as much money on registering as people who signed up for the race on time.”
Supply and demand, baby. Can’t argue with market dynamics. Can’t be a capitalist only when it works in your favor.
And in short, I signed us up.
The Best Thing About Being a Very Important Person
There are actually very many nice things about being a VIP at the Ogden Marathon. For example, we have access to the VIP packet pick-up, which means we don’t have to wait in a line. [Value: $0.20]
We get to ride in a nicer bus — that leaves later than the other buses — to the starting line, which means less waiting around and a more comfortable place for us to fret about the race (i.e., we’ll both be fretting about her race). [Value: $3.50]
We get a nice tent to hang out after the race, which means The Runner will have a nice place to wait for an hour and a half (all times approximate) for me to finally cross the line. [Value: $7.80]
We even get a massage. [Value: $15.00]
But none of those things are the best thing about being a VIP at this race. The very, very, very best thing about being a VIP tomorrow will be that there will be VIP porta-potties at the starting line.
Yep, while most folks have to wait for twenty other people to finish their business, The Runner and I will be able to just waltz (not literally) right up to the porta-potties and do what we gotta do. Which, in my case, is take a Very Important Poop. [Value: $210.99]
The Worst Thing About Being Me
I expect very good arguments could be made about which of very many of my characteristics are the worst. This is not the time for those arguments (nor will any such time be provided, ever).
However, tomorrow, the worst thing about being me will be that, 3:50 after the race begins, The Runner either will or will not have qualified for the Boston Marathon — something that matters to her — and I will not know which it is, for about another hour and change (or two hours and change, if I suck as bad as I might).
So, it’s entirely possible that you might find out — using clever Internetty methods and Twitter and such — how The Runner does in the race before I do.
Which doesn’t seem fair at all.
In any case, I’ll post our times tomorrow as soon as I am able (i.e., lucid).
Meanwhile, if you’d be so kind, take a moment and wish The Runner good luck in qualifying for Boston.