Print Story Three or four day weekend, depending.
By ad hoc (Tue Apr 18, 2006 at 09:50:24 AM EST) cycling, marathon, holiday (all tags)
Don't forget: taxes due tonight¹!

¹ for special people

Ah yes. Patriot's Day. The shot heard 'round the world. Kicking redcoat arse. But really, it's marathon day.

Did a bit of unplanned riding on Saturday. I had an errand downtown and after that, it was such a nice day I didn't want to go home, so I tooled around town. I haven't been down there much so I went out to the piers and followed the Harborwalk around to see what's up with that. Nice job so far, but there's a ways to go. There are still a couple of blocked areas, but they should have that sorted soon. Docked at Rowes Wharf was the Nantucket Lightship. I didn't know exactly what it was until I found it has its own website. It's now a party yacht. After that, through the North End and back through the Esplanade. I'm still amazed at how different this city looks with the elevated highway gone, especially Causeway Street in front of North Station. It's all bright and clean and shiny.

Didn't do much on Sunday. Had brunch  with a couple friends, then walked around Newbury St and checked out the finish line. Chatted with the parents and it looks like the SF trip for their 50th anniversay is off. My mom says "your father hit 70 and he just wants to be old." She's getting pretty frustrated with him. At this point, I don't know what to do, so I guess the ball is in their court. I said, "I want to do something for your anniversay, but I'm not going to force you."

Monday was the Marathon. Got a sort of late start, and didn't leave the finish line until 7:15. I made to the starting line in Hopkinton just about two hours later. It was quite cold. Had to wear my early spring jersey, gloves, and shoe covers. There were a lot of bikes out on the route. Moseyed around Hopkinton for a while, then rode back. Tailwind on the way out, headwind on the way back. Brrr. Even though the route isn't very nice, it's a good day to do it since parking is banned and it's the only day of the year you can be sure that the road has been swept of debris. Except in Natick which never cleans their streets for some reason.

Got back home and called toxicfur and postponed our shopping trip for obvious reasons. I wouldn't wish that on anyone. I know my day will come sometime and I dread even thinking about it.

Watched the race on tv. Channel 5 did the best job, as usual, with Bill Rodgers and Joan Benoit Samuelson as commentators. Uta Pippig stopped in for a bit as well. Channel 4 scored a new low with some clown standing by the side of the road trying to interview runners at, like, mile 12. Darting out into the crowd of runners (the Boston Marathon has huge numbers of runners) and trying to interview them while running. I think I'd smack him.

The millions of spectators all go for beers after the race, and many of them end up at the bar down on the corner. (Luckily, the one next door is close, but there's still the one down the street.) Some drunken idiot was walking away from the bar, talking on a cell phone, stopped in the front garden of the building, puked four or five times, then walked away finishing the cell call. At least this time it was the garden in front of the other half of the building, not in front of my window. The projectile colouring cross referenced with the bar menu leads me to conclude it was Killian's Irish Red.

You know, I really like this marathon. It's one of two events held in Boston that are truly top of the order, world class events. (The other is the Fourth of July celebration.) It's telling, I think, that both of these are privately run and financed events. The mayor is not allowed to say anything or give away any medals, he's only allowed to stand there. In the back. Heh. For marathons, I think Boston, NYC, and Chicago are the three noteworthy ones in the US. Beyond that, I'm led to believe London and Berlin are two other top-notch ones. (There may be others, but it's not an even I follow.) But there really is something special about the Boston one, even the runners say so, and I don't think it's just because they're on the spot and have no choice but to say so.

The commentators were talking about bit about Ernst van Dyk, the men's wheelchair winner, and his training regimen. The more they talked, the more it sounded like Lance Armstrong. Just a total, single minded driving focus, and a nearly inhumane schedule. But I guess that's how you win six Boston Marathon's in a row. I got to see one of the wheelchairs up close. Whoa! Those are cool machines! Very bike like. Maybe that's why I like watching the wheelchair racers better than the running racers.

The Hoyts were there again, for the 25th year. They've got their own starting spot marked but my photo of it didn't come out.

Kenyans won both the men's a women's running race. I can say without any fear of contradiction, that the Kenyan national anthem sucks. Switzerland is nice if a little dirge like, South Africa is okay, but Kenya...ick.

Anyway, lots of good pictures and coverage at the Globe Less good coverage at the Herald, but this one is good.

And not a single sighting of!!! Hurray!

< Don't Bruise the Feeling | BBC White season: 'Rivers of Blood' >
Three or four day weekend, depending. | 11 comments (11 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback
Marathon by miker2 (4.00 / 1) #1 Tue Apr 18, 2006 at 10:06:25 AM EST
It looked to be good weather for the race, nice and cool.  I had no idea how late they started it.  As a tri-geek, I'm used to being at the race venue before the sun rises, in June/July.  Those runners have it easy, being able to roll out of bed at 9, still make the start and having to just run.

I was quite surprised there were so many American men in the top 10.  Of course the top American is really African by birth, so that has something to do with it.

They should have the clown interview runners at mile 18-19, when their glycogen stores are nil and most of them are barely coherent, still too far from the finish to have that "I'm almost there" adrenaline rush.

Boston is on my list of todo's, I have to qualify though, and the 3:10 marathon probably isn't going to happen this year.

Ah, sociopathy. How warm, how comforting, thy sweet embrace. - MNS
IIRC by ad hoc (4.00 / 1) #3 Tue Apr 18, 2006 at 10:28:37 AM EST
He may have been interviewing them on Heartbreak Hill (mile 21) and the spot that all the runners dread. But I really don't remember.
Close friendships and a private room can offer most of the things love does.
[ Parent ]
Also by ad hoc (4.00 / 1) #5 Tue Apr 18, 2006 at 10:34:35 AM EST
The commentators (Rodgers & Samuelson) were talking about the high number of American men. Apparently, there's something called "Team Hanson" or something like that? It's some outfit that trains runners in the Kenyan style or something like that. It's supposed to be making a difference. I tuned in at the end of the discussion, so I'm not exactly sure what it is.

But it was very cold, so that probably helped. I had skull cap, gloves, and shoe covers.

3:10 eh? Yikes.
Close friendships and a private room can offer most of the things love does.

[ Parent ]
Qualifying times by miker2 (4.00 / 1) #6 Tue Apr 18, 2006 at 10:48:39 AM EST
Yeah, a 3:10 is a 7:15-ish pace.  I've been hitting that pace during my steady state and threshold runs, but those runs are only 6-9 miles long.

I'm hoping to average 8:30-9:00 miles at my next Ironman marathon.  That'll put me in the sub-4:00 range.

Ah, sociopathy. How warm, how comforting, thy sweet embrace. - MNS
[ Parent ]
wimp by joh3n (4.00 / 3) #11 Tue Apr 18, 2006 at 03:14:22 PM EST
I could so totally do a marathon in 3 days, 10 hours.

i wish they'd make hitler toilet paper

[ Parent ]
say wah ? by sasquatchan (4.00 / 1) #2 Tue Apr 18, 2006 at 10:22:35 AM EST
Boston, NYC, and Chicago

No Marine Corps Marathon, you gutless commie terrorist sympathizer hates America, freedom and the troops ?

They have a marathon? by ad hoc (4.00 / 1) #4 Tue Apr 18, 2006 at 10:29:08 AM EST
wha wha whaaa ? by sasquatchan (4.00 / 2) #7 Tue Apr 18, 2006 at 10:50:24 AM EST
but of course 30 years old or so. "The People's Marathon" According to the info page, NYC started in 1970, MCM 1976. Big deal is there's no prize money, thus the "big name" runners don't bother to compete.

[ Parent ]
Pthth by ad hoc (4.00 / 1) #8 Tue Apr 18, 2006 at 11:36:18 AM EST
"The People's Marathon" sounds pretty communist to me. Don't ask, don't tell.

Boston started in 1897.
Close friendships and a private room can offer most of the things love does.

[ Parent ]
You're full of shit by debacle (4.00 / 1) #10 Tue Apr 18, 2006 at 01:52:29 PM EST
Columbus didn't even land until William Wallace freed the slaves back in 1909.


[ Parent ]
Re: Shopping by toxicfur (4.00 / 1) #9 Tue Apr 18, 2006 at 01:13:17 PM EST
We should work out another time soon to do the shopping thing. I talked to iGrrrl today, and she seconds my gut feeling that I really should be going to Fat Ram's. She saw a tattoo that was exactly the kind of delicate shading that I want done that was inked there, and I've talked to a couple of other people who've been very pleased with their work. So, yeah. Work's kind of slow for now, so my schedule (except Thursdays) is pretty open. Weekends, too.

Re: Marathon. I agree with your assessment that it's a top-notch event. I have a co-worker who ran it, and she said it was one of the best experiences she's ever had.
I've got more than one membership to more than one club, and I owe my life to the people that I love. - Ani DiFranco

Three or four day weekend, depending. | 11 comments (11 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback