Yet another mass shooting. Only the details change, from Aurora, Colorado to Las Vegas to Virginia Tech to a church in Texas. I just can’t take it anymore…
The first Sunday in November is one I look forward to every year as a New Yorker, and this year, maybe even more so.
For one, I was looking forward to getting some fresh air, as since our new little nugget was born last Tuesday, we haven’t exactly been outside much. For another, we just had another terrorist attack last week and the whole city seemed to be a little on edge the last few days.
And third, because there is so much that divides us in America these days, so many things that split us apart, that simply standing with thousands of strangers all cheering on a wide swath of humanity all trying to accomplish the same thing I knew would make me feel good.
And it did. While my wife was upstairs feeding the little guy (I forgot how exhausting and long early feedings can be, but she certainly hasn’t) I snuck out for 90 minutes and had a phenomenal time in the 60-degree spitting rain we had here Sunday.
I met some new friends who apparently live right near me on 1st Avenue and were even more enthusiastic (Jodi and Danielle, I’ll probably never see you again but thanks for all the laughs and shouts!), and I was again uplifted by the triumph of a human spirit that thinks nothing of running 26.2 miles with thousands of strangers for very little glory other than personal satisfaction.
A few quick-hit thoughts from Marathon Sunday…
— My favorite moment of the day came from a truly unique woman named Patricia. She was running with a female friend of hers, heard us wildly calling her name, and decided to stop. She and her pal said “You guys are awesome, I want a picture with you.” And so the three of us took a photo with Patricia and her friend, then Patricia said “let’s do a shot” and took a tiny, mouthwash-sized bottle out from the fanny pack she was wearing, and drank something that definitely wasn’t water.
As our jaws hung open, she asked “Hey, what borough are win now?” I hope she was kidding but said “Manhattan,” and then she was off and running again.
Patricia, you shine on, you crazy diamond.
— In the unusual and cool costume dept., we had way more “Wonder Woman” runners than ever before, probably because of the movie. Saw an IronMan, a Queen Elizabeth-dressed runner, and more than a few Spider-Mans. Not sure how comfortable any of that could’ve been to run in.
— We gave high-fives to at least 15 runners Sunday, and let’s just say there’s not enough Purell in the world to fully cleanse my palm. But they got so pumped up when we called their name; it’s so great to see a runner laboring and looking dejected, only to see them perk up and smile when they hear cheering and their name called. It’s the best.
— I’ve said this before but the NYC Marathon is by far the most diverse sporting event I’ve ever seen. The rainbow coalition of types of people who run this race, old, young, white, black, Asian, Hispanic, male, female… there is no one “type” who does this crazy 26-mile journey. Just people who want to push themselves and have a wonderful sense of accomplishment at the end.
Sunday, I was honored to be a small part of their journey.
**Next up today, I seem to like Jennifer Lawrence very much but don’t see too many of her movies. She was great in “American Hustle” and I’m sure I’ve seen her elsewhere, but her interviews and non-movie stuff are almost always enjoyable and peg Lawrence as a fun, wildly self-deprecating celebrity who realizes so much of Hollywood is B.S.
She hosted Jimmy Kimmel’s show last Thursday night and her monologue was fabulous; halfway through she went outside on the streets and asked random people to name five Jennifer Lawrence movies. It was fabulous.
**Finally today, I didn’t see much football on Sunday (I was watching those runners) but apparently it was a wild day in the NFL. The Giants continued to turn into the Jets, getting blown out at home (51 points they gave up!); the New Orleans Saints are 6-2 and who the hell ever saw that coming this season, and most importantly, we got some more hilarious and super-fun end zone dances.
There are a lot of things we can bash the NFL about this year, but one thing they’ve actually done right is allowed players who’ve scored to do fun TD celebrations. They’re harmless, they are wildly entertaining, and they allow players to show a little of their personalities.
This one Sunday, by the Kansas City Chiefs, might be my favorite all year. I’m not the only one who flashed to a “Brady Bunch” episode or “Mr. Mom” while watching this, right?