I would like to one day run the New York City Marathon.
For now, though, I’m only running five miles at a time, so I settled for the next-best thing: Watching the marathon live, from about 500 yards outside my front door.
Always wanted to see the Marathon live, and Sunday I got to cross it off my bucket list: Since my wife and I moved to First Avenue, a major viewing area for the awesome race, I knew I would finally get my chance.
And it was… extraordinary. Such a wonderful, wonderful time. So many senses came at me I was overloaded; it was cold, it was loud, it was joyful, it was crowded, and mostly… it was fantastic.
Some thoughts from 90 minutes spent leaning against a metal police railing at mile 16 (that’s my wife’s picture from where we were standing, above):
— My favorite part of the day was yelling out random stranger’s names and screaming for them like we were old friends. For many of the runners, we just yelled out the logo on their shirt (like “France” or “Fred’s Team”), but with a ton of runners putting their names on their shirts, we got plenty of practice screaming “Go Susie!” or “You can do it, Greg!” A lot of the runners played to the crowd, but to see their faces light up when five or six random strangers screamed their name and cheered for them was so great. At first, a lot of them looked at us like “Do I know you?” But then they just gave a thumbs-up, or a wave.
— The coolest sight was the uniforms of the runners. So many colors, so many different sock and sneaker looks, and so many costumes. We saw three Spidermans, a couple of Supermans, people with giant blue and yellow wigs, and my favorite, a dude running in a Hulk Hogan “Hulkamania” shirt (and yes, he did the hand to the ear move Hulk was famous for).
Truly, it was like watching a rainbow blur by you every 10-15 seconds.
— There were a lot of creative shirts, but my favorite was definitely the woman who’s orange T-shirt said on the back “You just got passed by a pregnant lady!”
Hey, the kid will come out of the womb in running shape, right?
— Each runner’s bib has a tracking device, so it was cool seeing people we were standing near know when their loved one would be coming by.
— For so many of these runners, it was a once in a lifetime experience. And so many of them were running with cameras and filming the crowd. Which means I can guarantee you that my little group I was standing with will be on about 15 home movies forever.
Which, if you think about it, is a nice way to be in someone’s life for a few seconds.
**OK, so my mother-in-law sent me this video of a Criss Angel illusion that he’s been doing for years, but was just on a recent episode of his TV show.
I watched it a bunch of times and it freaked me out every time, even after I did some Internet research (check the comments section). I know it’s not “real” but still pretty amazing. The good parts begin at 1:20…
**It’s pretty easy to wager on the 2013 New York Jets.
On odd-numbered weeks, they win.
On even numbered weeks, they lose.
Fortunately, they play “bye” next week, so I think they’ll be able to win that one.
Yep, the crazy, wacky season of the Jets continued on Sunday, as they once again won a game they had absolutely no business winning, when you looked at on paper.
They ran the ball for 200 yards, they got a huge pass rush in the second half, and they “held” Drew Brees to 380 passing yards (trust me, they did a good job on him when it mattered.)
Chris Ivory ran hard. Geno Smith played smart and didn’t turn the ball over. And the D-line continues to look ferocious; finally, after years of searching, the Jets have a pass rush, thanks to Muhammad Wilkerson, Quinton Coples, and Sheldon Richardson (all great draft picks. Stephen Hill, meanwhile… not so much.)
I have no idea if this Jets team can actually make the playoffs, which would be the most surprising season in my lifetime as a Jets fan. But they sure have made this season a lot more fun to watch than I would’ve thought.
They’re 5-4, when I never thought they’d get five wins all year. Crazy.