Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Don't interrupt my run...

Jo's been running since she was twenty-two years old. She sixty-three now, so that's a lot of years and a very early start in the time line of women's running (recall that women were not even allowed in the NYC marathon when Jo first laced up her shoes). To say she loves it, would be an understatement. 9 NYC marathons, and she still cries every time she crosses the finish line. Running hits the top three list of the "most important things in her life," just after family and career (she worked for 25 years in Morgenthau's office in NYC--that's the prosecutor's office). And best of all, running literally may have saved her life.

In the late 70's, when Central Park was less of the jewel it is today (at least safety-wise), she was attacked by a man brandishing a knife, as she was running to work (there's something ironic about the man's choice of victim). She was so incensed at having her run interrupted, not to mention that she didn't want to be late for work, that she turned on the man and yelled, "You better leave me alone!" He did. It sounds like Jo's running shoes had some kind of Dorothy's-red-shoes magic in them.

Actually, come to think of it, our running shoes do have magic in them--the power to transform a bad day into a good day; frustration into speed; chocolate cake into muscle; and self-doubt into self-confidence. I can't guarantee the power to ward off attackers as Jo did, but for the rest...I know.