ORN: 11.5 miles, 1:57:19, 10:13/mile, R4/W1
Mercifully, February ended and, we hope, a turn for better weather is on the way. Our local weather dude reported we had more storms and fewer sunny days this February than any on record. Boy, it felt like it too. Two more storms in the past week added further depressing evidence to the facts.
Running was slim the past week too. I tried to go out a couple of times but had a seeming bruise on my left foot which hurt quite a bit. I took it easier, went out for a simple two mile run on Friday without pain. February ended up with 66 total miles. Better than January’s 55 miles; had this week gone better the difference would have been higher.
The schedule called for a 5K time trial today but I was antsy to go long. It was a balmy 44F, 6 degrees above my cutoff to wear shorts. It was fun to be in shorts, running past little kids on their sleds, sliding down snowy slopes. I ended up doing 11.5 miles. The foot pain was gone. It felt good.
March 1 is also the anniversary of one of my favorite childhood stories. I grew up on a cattle ranch in Nebraska; perhaps surprisingly in that rural setting, I grew to love Baseball, thanks to my Mom. Especially the Yankees; Mickey Mantle, Elston Howard, Roger Maris, Clete Boyer; all were my heros. I played baseball all the way to college, I still umpire and listen to any game on.
In our small school system, Mrs. Johnson taught us 8th grade science but her real love was Nebraska history, which we heard about as much as phloem and xylem. We also already knew March 1 is the anniversary of Nebraska’s admission to the Union. So, at the start of science class on that first day of March, Mrs. Johnson, with a big smile, asked us “Class, what is important about this day?” I knew the answer she wanted, but, in a rare moment of quick thinking, I saw the chance to get one-up on my teacher.
I shot my hand in the air enthusiastically and she called on me. “Yes, Joe, what is special about today?” I beamed, my opportunity sitting there like a batting practice fastball: “Today is the start of Spring Training!”
Mrs. Johnson turned red and upset. Yet, she couldn’t do anything; I had answered the question correctly. My baseball-loving pal, Pat Engles, sat next to me hardly able to control his laughter. It was my moment. And I still enjoy it, every March 1.
Years later, Mrs. Johnson ran into my mother and went on and on to her about what a fine science student I was. Selective memory is a wonderful thing.
Persevere. Even if you have smart aleck, baseball-loving students around.