Posts Tagged ‘Mysteries of the universe’

Running with the Pagan Spirits

WEATHER: 30 degrees

MILES: 10.5, including 2 x 15-min. tempo runs



WHERE TO: Down Rhode Island Ave., to K Street, to Georgetown, up Wisconsin Ave., across on Macomb Ave. to Connecticut Ave., then Dupont Circle, then home.  In case you cared to know.

MOOD: Stress-relieving


So here’s the thing: a new school semester has begun, and, to be honest, I can’t come up with something fresh and insightful (because what is more insightful than jokes about pee and g-spots?) every day.  So we are enlisting the assistance of a nifty hobby I’ve taken up since Christmas, in the interest of procrastinating schoolwork: Tarot-card-reading.  I’m just going to draw a card at random and apply it to my lovely morning tempo run, which went better than expected.

Now, I know there are those of my friends and acquaintances reading this who, for various spiritual reasons, do not approve of occult-based spiritual practices, even those based upon decks and books bought out of sheer boredom off the bargain rack at the only Barnes & Noble within driving distance of my fantastically isolated home while Christmas shopping with my mom.  And I respect that.  I very much do.  But I also feel that, if you feel that Tarot should be paid no mind at all, there is little greater disrespect that can be paid to it than inclusion on a 3rd-rate running blog maintained by a frayed-nerved, sleep-deprived, romantically challenged twenty-something wannabe writer who has run out of ideas.


Today’s running card:

Look at 'er. She's just OWNING that chair.

So.  The Queen of Wands, according to a random (but very informative) Tarot blog I found, “is a passionate, confident, powerful woman. She’s full of life and expects to achieve anything she desires. The fires in the background remind us that her energy can become destructive, if unchecked. Beneath her throne, the cat waits to pounce. She is completely connected to her animal instincts.”

Also note that the accompanying card (at left) shows a distinctly Xena-like, almost tranny-ish lady who is definitely working the power stance on that chair.

Ummm…well, I did kick a few cats while I was running today…so check off the “destructive” and “animal instincts” parts.

Huh.  This is a toughy.

Basically this lady looks like she set fire to a village, found a chair, put her pet cat down and pulled out her sword for a leisurely polishing while she celebrated the spoils of victory.  “Yep.  I got it goin’ on,” she’s saying.

I did not set fire to a village this morning — I hocked up a few lugies (sp?) on the Georgetown sidewalks.  And when I got home I did the First-Street-striptease (unzip shirts, untie tights, pull out keys, take off hat and gloves, all while jogging up to house) so that when I got in the house I could RIPITALLOFF and jump straight into the shower, because living in a house with four women, one has to JUMP on that shower when it’s open, because sometimes it seems that roommate so-and-so is just WAITING to hear your keys in the front door, and then takes THAT (and NOT her alarm clock) as her wake-up call to get herself into the shower for what I presume is wax-everything-fest-2010, judging from the time it takes.*

So I left sweaty clothes and spit in my wake, sat down in my crappy Target desk chair, and brandished my hair dryer and make-up for a looking-good session in front of my MacBook, because, OK, no I do NOT own a mirror, so Photo Booth is just going to have to do.  And then my oatmeal spilled all over my bag on my way to work.

Once again, I’ve lost my train of thought.

Clearly tarot is unlocking the universe for me.  I’m going to bed.


*Housemates: if you read this, I take major creative license, I realize.  Don’t hate me or spit in my peanut butter.

Fear of Commitment

WEATHER: 24 degrees.  Again, chilly, breezy, and dark.




MOOD: Reluctant.


So OK.  This schedule I’m following is a little intimidating.  Leaving aside the fact that I’ve never followed one of these things to the letter, I’ve also never committed to 7 days a week of running.  And I’ve certainly never hit 70 miles per week, so the prescription of “50-70 miles per week” freaks me out.  I’m not sure I’m ready for that kind of relationship with running, which is currently neck-and-neck with my thesis in the competition of who is my de facto boyfriend.

I actually wondered for a long time what sort of amateur runner reaches that (unnecessary) level of masochism/obsessiveness.  I’d look at these crazy-ass schedules and just put the 70-mile-per-week question up there with the other unanswered questions of the universe, like (a) how birds have sex or (b) why people think Wilco is so damn great.

(As it turns out, (a) much as you would imagine it, only inexplicably way more disturbing, and (b) still a mystery.)

And then I met the Herd of Stringy Men.

Backstory: I lived in Minneapolis for 3 years after graduating college, and in that time I encountered many a brutal winter (three, to be exact) — winters that bring single-digit temperatures at 6 AM, making a runner want to step her spandex-encased ass right into oncoming traffic, if only because she KNOWS that ambulance is going to be heated.

Anyway.  The Minnesota Distance Running Association gave us all a place to go two nights a week, opening up the Metrodome and letting people run around the concourses.  And though there was a wide range of runners with a wide range of abilities working their way around the concession stands, I often managed to fall into pace with this band of middle-aged fellows.

And though I was never “one of them,” I once, in the midst of a 600m-repeat-fest, heard them going on about their mileage, and how “I couldn’t break my plateau until I got past 70 miles per week” and “Yeah, Bob, that’s really the only way I ever got my weight under control,” and “No kidding, Stanley, and plus now I have that attractive rubbery-skinned veiny thing going on all up and down my biceps and calves” and “You sure do, Richard!  Can I rub your legs sensually later?” and “By all means, Stanley; I have some shea butter in my gym bag!” and so on and so forth.  Of course, I wasn’t listening to any of this later stuff because I was still stuck on — SEVENTY FLIPPIN’ MILES PER WEEK!  It was like discovering the dodo or coelacanth or something.

And then their spiffy watches would all beep IN UNISON (which never failed to creep me out on some level) and off they’d go for their next interval.  Because these men did nothing BUT intervals.  Presumably for 70 miles a week.  All 140 pounds of them.

Anyhoo.  These men and I eventually reached a point of eying each other with cautious respect as we untied our shoes after each Dome session.  Until this one night when I pulled out my ponytail and squeezed like a quart of freshly produced sweat all over the concrete.

Stringy Guy #5 (and keep in mind that I had never had a conversation with ANY of these guys) looked me square in the eye and said, and I quote,


“Don’t act like you’re not impressed!” I yelled.  He vomited.  I threw up my fists triumphantly and bounded out to my car.

Actually, I think I sort of shyly put on my hat and skittered away, without even bothering to tie my shoes or my sweatpants, so by the time I got to the bottom of the stairs my pants were around my ankles and my shoes were coming off and my hair was still dripping and, thorougly shamed, I went home and watched 6 episodes of Ally McBeal while sucking non-dairy creamer straight from the container and

I’ve lost my point here, which I think had something to do with running gazillions of miles per week, and also slamming Wilco.  I don’t recall, and I’ve gotten progressively tipsier as this post has progressed.