Running

Weekend (Ultimate) Warriors: Cleveland, OH

You know Cleveland. Don’t you? The setting for The Drew Carey Show, a rival city for Liz Lemon in 30 Rock, Ted’s hometown from How I Met Your Mother? Yeah, that one. Don’t be fooled, Cleveland is more than a plot device and setting for network TV sitcoms; it is a real town, albeit slightly magical, tucked away in the Midwest (Midwest? Is that what you call it?) on a Great Lake.

Fantastic food, clean city, friendly people, three sports stadiums (in town) and blocks away from each other. Cleveland is wonderful. In fact, it may be one of my favorite cities in America. There, I said it.

Last weekend, my wife, my visiting brother in law, and I traveled to Cleveland for the Rite Aid Cleveland Marathon. I was initially scheduled to run the half marathon with my wife, but my knee decided to be a bastard on me. Since, I have played the role of supporting spouse for my wife who thrashed the Hell out of that half-marathon. Boom! I couldn’t be prouder of her. She was great. Running a half-marathon is hard enough, but doing it by yourself is something I’m not sure I would have the wherewithal to do. Three cheers for my wife!

Among my favorite highlights:

  • The sketchy and delicious Greek food place in the Arcade.
  • Seeing Johnny Cash’s tour bus (see pictures)
  • Losing $5 playing an Airplane (the movie) themed slot machine
  • Morning coffee at Erie Island Coffee Co., a small cafe near the Corner Alley
  • Room service dessert
  • The marathon starting with the theme song from The Drew Carey Show.

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Attitude Alignment Algorithm (or, Sour Neon Worms)

What’s worse than runner’s knee? Knunner’s ree. But that’s another story for another time.

Yesterday my wife and I were training for our half-marathon—one month away in Cleveland. It was a ten mile run. The weather was a surprising 80 degrees; other people were outside. I waved. Mile 2 my knee became stiff, and I ran through it. Mile 5 my knee seized and my body dug into the asphalt like Iron Man falling from the sky. “Ah poop,” I said.

Kneedy

The great thing about living in Rochester is that I’m constantly given opportunities to have a bad attitude a great attitude. It’s been a tough winter (as I’ve said and said and said) but we’re finally out of it! (Tomorrow a snow storm is expected). And though I’m limping like a sailor, I’m happy to say—

Okay.

I can’t do it.

Guys.

I’ve reached my max here.

This knee thing is the pits. I’m well aware that I signed up for 23 credits with a part-time job and, well, what should I have expected? But this marathon? It was going to be everything. It would represent my ascension into post-Spring semester heaven. I would be running. Those cheering on the sidelines would be yelling, “Kevin, you made the right choice moving to Rochester. Way to go!” Or, “Keep up the good work, Kevin! Never mind the opportunity costs associated with uprooting and college. You’re almost there!” And finally, as I’m given a small cup of water, with extra, because I deserve it: “You can do it! Your wife’s career is mildly suffering but it is worth it for you to study at a private school! Woo!” (more…)

Proof My Life is a Movie and That I’m On To You

My favorite all-time movie is The Truman Show. I think its Jim Carrey’s finest hour on screen (Eternal Sunshine, of course, is a very close second). As a child (1998!), I remember exiting the movie theatre convinced that my life was one big TV show and everybody was in on it. There has since surfaced a mental delusion called Truman Syndrome or The Truman Show Delusion where people believe their lives are really staged plays, TV shows, or films.

I’m proud to say that I am not a sufferer of Truman Syndrome. However, I am on to you bastards. Some strange things have been happening this last week, and the only logical explanation is that I’m trapped inside a hilarious, yet tragically poignant, reality television program and/or movie. (more…)

How I’d Spend my Saturday (If I Were a Punk-Rocker)

I’ve been fairly poor lately. Staying away from specifics such as budget and purchasing power, I will mention Mac N’ Cheese has been a substantial portion of my daily diet. Mmmmmmac.

This whole “poor” thing has got me thinking existentially. What is life? What is happiness? What control does money have over myself, the individual?

I had one more thought, and it brought me here: Who is better at being poor than punk-rockers?

Punk-Rock is a music genre, scene, and way of life. The punk-mentality doesn’t need money, nor does it need an excuse. Punk-rockers just are. They walk the streets. They smoke. .. Well, who knows what they do. But it seems they get through life being poor pretty alright.

Some of my favorite friends from high-school were the punk-rockers: the mohawks, the black clothes, the best music. I’m not sure what happened to them. Some, I’m sure, looked at the holes in their jeans and turned and headed back. Others turned into philosophy graduates; others, still, traded their jeans for suits and probably work as tellers in local banks.

Regardless, I find myself today, penniless, stuck inside an apartment in Rochester, NY with a cupboard full of Marconi and Cheese and nothing else to do. But it’s Saturday, and I want to do something! Think, Kevin! Think PUNK!

Punk-Rock Saturday

Idea # 1. Demotivate 5K Runners: There’s this 5k Run in Rochester today. The route wraps around both ends of my block; I can hear the clatter and cheer as I write. I’m thinking about going to the end of the block and yelling:

“Slow down!” “You won’t make it!” “Get over yourself!” “You’re fat!”

In this vision, I also hand out tiny water cups filled of cheap vodka.

Idea #2. Celebrate the Government Shutdown with a Parade: The parade, obviously, would consist of punk-rockers walking down main street blasting Bad Religion from their 80’s boom-boxes. This vision works best when everybody has their own boom-box and plays a different song. Total anarchy.

Idea #3. Shoplift from Goodwill: My punk-rock friends used to say this: “What are they losing if they get it for free?” I’ve never been able to answer that question in full confidence. Goodwill, more like good steal!

Shoplifting in New York is trickier than it is in the West Coast. Here, almost every store has a security/loss prevention guard. What better way to exercise my beliefs against the man? (and exercise!)

Idea #4. Argue Music Selections at Record Stores: 85% of punk-rock is hanging out. What better place to do this than in a record store? Just walk in and browse, wait for someone to choose a bad record and you have something to do for fifteen minutes. Start with this, “Are you serious?”

Music establishments generally encourage this type of behavior.

Idea #5. Start a Punk Rock Band: The best punk-rock comes from having nothing to do (and no purpose to do it with!). This is me! I think I’ve realized why the Lord sent me to Rochester. Obviously, it’s to hate the man and make loud music.

And if the band doesn’t work, I’ll just start kicking people.

Any additional suggestions?