Saturday was a beautiful day in New York City. A good day to run for a good cause.
A couple of weeks ago a friend of my wife’s mentioned that the Pat Tillman Foundation was holding its 10th annual Pat’s Run race in New York on April 26, and would I be interested in doing it (she knows I’ve become a bit of a runner; I usually jog between 4-5 miles per day, a few days a week, and this would be a 4.2 mile run).
Pat Tillman, of course, was the former NFL player who after 9/11 decided to chuck his football career and enlist in the Army, and then tragically was killed by friendly fire in 2004. I’m not going to get into the whole mess of his death here, about how the U.S. government lied about his death’s circumstances, then lied to Tillman’s family for years in an apparent cover-up; that’s all well-covered territory.
Today I just want to talk about the race, which benefits the Pat Tillman Foundation, helping children and spouses of U.S. servicemen and women go to college (they’re raised $4.6 million in the past decade).
It was really a wonderful run, with 500 of us lined up in our bright-yellow T-shirts at the start (there’s me, above, after finishing in 41 minutes, not terrible, not great, for the 4.4 mile run. Yes, that’s right, it was actually .2 miles longer than we were told it was.)
We started on the West Side Highway, running past all the pretty piers in Manhattan, and as usual when I run these things, I tried to pace myself off certain people. OK, I said, as long as the girl in the gray sweatpants is near me, I’m doing fine. Then it was the dude in the Pat Tillman Cardinals jersey I wanted to stay near, followed by the woman with a purple cast on her wrist.
We ran along the river, and all the way down to the World Trade Center and the Freedom Tower, which was a great place to finish. What they didn’t tell us was that we’d have to run up some stairs, about 25 of them, and then down 25 more, which seriously slowed us down.
Still, it felt great to be running for a good cause. I don’t enter too many races because for me, running is a solitary activity, and I don’t really feel compelled to race with a big group. But every once in a while, a race is a great change of pace.
For more info on the Tillman Foundation, click here.
**Next up, this is unlike any video I’ve ever seen. It’s called “Painted: An Adventure in Stop Motion Body Art, and it’s from a man named Elvis Schmulianoff. Watch in amazement at what he does to this woman.
**Some thoughts on a pretty darn exciting weekend in the NHL and NBA playoffs, starting of course with my New York Rangers with their best game of the series, winning 4-2 over the filthy Flyers on Sunday. Slow start to the game, but much better as it got going. Lundqvist was big when he needed to be, the fourth line was fabulous (Dominic Moore, what a great story he is), and the defense was stellar.
Now please, for the love of all things Pierre Larouche, don’t put us Rangers fans through another Game 7, like we’ve seen so many times the last few years. Go up to Philly, kick their butt, and come home. Thank you.
— Vince Carter hit a game-winning 3-pointer for Dallas on Saturday was just about as unexpected as it gets; Vince hasn’t hit a big shot in at least a decade, it seemed.
— My Brooklyn Nets wasted an opportunity to all but clinch their series with Toronto. The Nets had me shouting at the TV in the fourth quarter, when they committed, I think, 428 straight offensive fouls. Just awful. The Raptors tried really hard to give that game away, but now the series is 2-2 and anyone can win it.
**So, about this Donald Sterling racist stuff that became huge news on Saturday: First, the man is a repugnant human being, always has been, always will be. Second, I found it fairly amusing at how outraged and shocked NBA players, coaches and Sterling’s fellow NBA owners acted about these latest comments, as if they didn’t KNOW what a racist, bigoted schmuck Sterling was before Saturday. Folks, the man has been saying and doing things against blacks, Mexicans, etc. for THIRTY YEARS. Is it just because now he was caught on tape?
I have no idea if new NBA commissioner Adam Silver will suspend, fine or do anything else to Sterling. But what I do know is that Sterling loves being an owner, and I’m not sure legally the NBA can do anything to force him to sell.
Would be nice to see the Clippers players have a Tommie Smith/John Carlos 1968 Olympics moment and refuse to play, or protest some other way, but that’s probably a fantasy.