Monday, June 25, 2012

Marathon Man

An ex-coworker has half-convinced me to run a marathon in December. I figure I did a 15K and didn't die, and a marathon would only be three times that, so how hard could it be?

Since I'm already setting goals I might not reach or even attempt, why not aim higher? I could write up my experiences into a book. You know, like the one where the guy read the whole Encyclopaedia Britannica or the guy who lived a whole year strictly adhering to the Old Testament*. Hell, people buy that stuff.

I could start talking about my shitty diet and general out of shapeness, and how I end up using the self-confidence and goal setting learned through long-distance running to solve my problems and become a better person. It would help if I were working through something big. I got divorced, but that's been a while. Haven't had anyone close to me die. Maybe I'll just make something up.

In between the fascinating chapters on me, I could have a history of marathon running, from the Greeks up to the rediscovery of distance running in the '70s. I could have interviews with ... I dunno, who's a famous runner? Yeah, them. And maybe someone who could humble me and teach me life lessons, like a vet who ran a marathon on a prosthetic leg, or a grandma who set a record after losing her husband of 40 years.

But the real spotlight would be on me, just like in all those other books. I would use my runs as springboards to give readers long discourses on my fascinating inner life. Like, running through Avondale could start me talking about my fears of growing old with no money. Seeing a family could get me talking about my relationship with my parents. Throughout, I could examine my fears and anxieties, and my history of poor decision making. Like, for instance, starting on  a whim to train for a marathon with very little knowledge or willingness to learn in the middle of a Florida summer.

The big payoff will come after I get this phantom book printed to thunderous acclaim. I can hear my NPR interviews  now - I'll be charming and witty, yet reverent when I talk about the grandma or the vet. That oughta be enough to get me on TV. And if I get an interview on Conan or something, I'd have a much better chance of meeting Scarlett Johansson than I would as a disgruntled librarian in Jacksonville.

From there I could launch my career as a humorist. Yep, no longer would I be a dude telling the same stories over and over (seriously, have you people ever actually read this thing? It's either me embarrassing myself, or getting drunk, or talking about how I like the Minutemen), I'd be a social critic shining a light on today's problems, using my wit and humor to inform the public like a modern day Mark Twain.

Plus, I'd be making bank and cruising with Scarlett.

Actually, that all sounds like a lot of work. I'm already possibly maybe running a marathon, what more do you people want from me?

* That was the same guy? Wow, he really has the market cornered on that stuff, huh?

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