Petra – Out of my League?

A week ago I crossed paths with Her Wonderfulness, Petra, and invited her to the Manito Runners Club for our Saturday morning run. I was seriously disappointed when she did not show up.

However, as our group headed out, I saw her walking down the stairwell of her apartment building. I said to my buddy, Joe, “Hey, the most beautiful woman on the South Hill just walked out her door.”

“Where?” Joe asked, looking around.

“Turn here,” I said. “Let’s cut through this apartment parking lot.”

I caught a glimpse of Petra still near the top of the stairwell. I asked Joe to stop behind a carport. I had to time it so we’d run past right when she reached the bottom.

“Where is this woman?” Joe asked. “We need to get going.”

“Just a sec,” I said. Petra’s legs came into view at the top of the last staircase. “Okay, come on.”

I timed it perfectly. “Petra! Hey! What a coincidence.”

She was meeting a friend, which is why she hadn’t joined us. I introduced Joe, and as we chatted, I was so impressed. The way she talked, the words she used, her voice – never had a woman’s verbal skills been so appealing to me. While listening to a question that Joe asked, Petra glanced at me and smiled shyly. She’d caught me. The way I was staring at her, captivated and uber-attentive, she knew I was absolutely taken by her.

We said good-by, and Petra mentioned she’d try to make it next week.

“So, am I right? Most beautiful woman on the South Hill?” I asked Joe as we ran at a good pace to catch up.

“She is a knock-out. My crystal ball shows her and I on a date.”

“Wait a minute. You and Sheryl Ann? Haven’t you two been going out a few months now?”

“Sheryl Ann? Yeah…but Petra…wow. She is something else.”

What a mistake introducing Petra. I should’ve known. She is so absolutely, unbelievably wonderful that any guy would be instantly attracted to her.

Aliens Offer Training Tips to Runner

I’ve often wondered if aliens run. Since they spend so much time zipping around the universe on their extended, far-reaching missions, they surely need exercise. Do they have treadmills in their spaceships? When they find a new civilization, do they come down and enter races to get a feel for the inhabitants while getting a workout?

I checked finisher lists for alien-like names at a bunch of races around the country. I found a 2012 Boston Marathon finisher named Zy Dwaak, however his hometown was listed as Arlington, Virginia.

I spent some time at the website, Ihadareallyweirdexperiencewithaliens.com, and found someone who’d had a remarkable encounter. I contacted him.

Hans Harzl of Steiermark. Austria, was out for a run one evening when bright lights and a loud whoosh filled the air. A spacecraft landed nearby and a gaggle of aliens poured out.

Hans Harzl had an amazing encounter with aliens while running.

Hans Harzl went running with aliens.

“I was scared shitless,” Hans said. “I kicked it into high gear, but they caught up and surrounded me. I’ve heard of aliens probing humans, and I begged them to leave me alone. Luckily, all they did was run with me – at first.”

Hans said they went a few miles together before they turned back. The aliens told him, in perfect German, they just wanted to go for a run, happened to see him, and decided to join.

Hans added, “They were in great shape – weren’t even breathing hard. I think they could’ve run me into the ground if they wanted. They gave me a couple training tips and wished me good luck in my upcoming half-marathon.”

“They never did probe you?”

“Actually, they suggested some mutual probing, and it worked out very, very well.”

“Mutual probing? What’s that exactly? Sounds sexual.”

Hans smiled. “Aliens are very, very friendly. I really like them.”

Race Awards – Fluff or Great Stuff

SONY DSCIf you win or place in your age-group at a race, does it excite you to get a ribbon or medal? Do you have every one you’ve ever got, or is it a just a matter of time before it’s in the garbage?

Most people like receiving a race award, especially if it’s a rare occasion when you can get one. Top-notch runners probably have a box or closet full of them.

I know a runner who is not excited about receiving race awards, which is how I feel about it. He even opposes them. With some races giving finish awards to all runners, or handing out expensive medallions, the cost has to be covered by the entry fee. Better to lower expenses and make the entry fee cheaper.

If you reach the stage where you feel you have too many things, here’s a good way to get rid of your awards while making the asking of future favors easier: Present them to friends under the guise of “lifetime friendship award” or “very valuable individual”. Just make sure to cover any race info with something shallow like a drawing or illustration that has a warm and fuzzy, feel-good quality. Maintain an expression of genuine appreciation if he or she shows any sign they think the award is bogus.

On a related topic, I deserve a first-place award for my performance yesterday. In my last post I mentioned how I ran into Her Wonderfulness, Petra. Last night I had myself wrapped around her and we were kissing so passionately. I woke up, and I was very confused. How could this be? I looked around, and no one was in bed but me. It was a dream. It was so real that it took a few seconds to realize it had to be a dream only because Petra wasn’t in my bedroom. This is what I deserve a medal for – most realistic dream ever.

Boy, do I have a thing for Petra. More and more I think about her. She is so wonderful.

Gorgeous Runner and I Intersect

The most beautiful flower in the entire shop stood before me today. I gazed at her, enthralled and awed, and at the same time, thinking, I can’t blow this. I can’t say anything stupid.

I mentioned in my first post how I saw her running, and how I’ve looked for her on nearly every run since. Well, today it happened. At the intersection where I always stop to stretch, a woman came into view, running toward me. As she got closer, I saw it was her. No way could I let her go by without talking.

“Excuse me, do you know what time it is?” I said as she passed through the intersection.

I ran toward her, but before I could get close, she looked at her watch, said, “2:45,” and continued on.

“Wait! Miss! Excuse me!” She stopped, and I jogged up to her. Oh, she is beautiful. So beautiful. “Is that Pacific or Mountain time?”

“Pacific or Mountain?” she asked.

“Sorry, I mean standard or daylight. You know, we just changed our clocks, but I’m sure you’re on top of it. My name is Jim.” I put my hand out. We shook.

“I’m Petra.”

“You must live in the neighborhood. I’ve seen you around.”

“I live in a big apartment building near Manito Park.”

“I know the one. I’m in a running group that meets in the park Saturday mornings at eight. You should join us sometime.”

“I think I’ve seen your group before. You meet just off the Grand Street entrance.”

“That’s right. Please come. We have coffee afterwards. It’s a good group.”

“I’ll think about it. Nice meeting you, Jim. Have a good run.”

I turned like I was going to head out, but as she ran away, I stopped and just stood, watching her. Oh, what a beautiful stride. And her backside – so appealing. What a wonderful, wonderful woman.

My attention was broken by someone pounding on a window. I looked around – it was the guy in the corner house who told me to keep trying. He smiled at me and gave a big thumbs-up.

Running in Formal Wear

Hard to say it’s officially a trend, but a few runners out there are scaling it up. I talked to two last week, and based on our conversations, a movement toward formal running attire is definitely happening.

Billie Johnston enjoys her Saturday morning ten-miler in an elegant, black, evening dress (with slits), a pearl necklace, and a rhinestone-studded purse slung around her shoulder. I asked why she runs in such a nice outfit.

“I like to look good in public, just like any other woman. And I tell ya, I get a lot of looks. I can’t count how many times a car passed by, honked, and the guy put his thumbs-up out the window.”

It’s not just women either. James Dalton runs in nice slacks, a sport jacket, and a shirt buttoned to the top. On Mondays, to celebrate the end of the weekend, he’ll run in a suit and tie. Like Johnston, he enjoys looking good.

I joined James Dalton (left, with sunglasses) for a run last week.

I joined James Dalton (left, with sunglasses) for a run last week.

“When you look sharp you run sharp. And I just love it sometimes when I run past a group of people, and they start applauding. It’s such a good feeling.”

Though they look good, I’d be concerned about overheating on a warm day. Yet both runners are adamant it doesn’t bother them. Says Johnston, “Guys are always asking if I want to stop and have a drink from their water. I almost always do.”

Dalton adds, “Women like to pull a handkerchief from their purse and offer to wipe my brow. Of course, I can’t say no to that.”

Health Benefits of Running Over-rated?

Recently while out for a run, I came to a wide intersection where the Don’t Walk light was flashing. I sprinted across before the signal changed. A couple standing at the corner, obvious non-runners who waited instead of crossing as I had, glared at me. The husband snarled, “You runners think you’re so cool. Just wait until your knees go bad at 50.”

I soldiered on and shook my head. Guy must have been having a bad day. But later I got to thinking. I do know former runners who had to give it up because of bad knees.

I don’t want my knees going out on me. Would it be better if I stopped running? I reached for the phone and called my friend I.P. Aard, a medical researcher at the National Institute of Running Sciences. I told her about my unpleasant conversation at the intersection.

“This is the second time in a week you’ve called me. What’s going on, buttercup?“

traffic light

“I just like talking to you. You’re so pleasant.”

“Thank-you, sweet pea. The guy at the corner – you didn’t punch him out did you?”

“Of course not.”

“Good job. A gold star for you. But it’s true that many runners have knee problems, especially as they get older. If I were you, I’d be pricing wheelchairs right now.”

“No,” I shouted, putting the phone down. What a total downer. My day was ruined. The phone rang. It was I.P. again.

“C’mon, I was joking. You’ll be all right. Sure, some runners have knee issues, but often it’s hereditary. The benefits of running far, far outweigh being sedentary.”

“That’s good news, I.P. I was really scared for a moment. Really scared.”

“There, there, Jim. It’s all right. Everything will be okay.”

Don’t Run on Wednesdays

I had no luck at the intersection today even though I hung around for more than ten minutes faking like I needed to stretch. The guy that lives at the corner, who came outside last week and asked if I was a gang member, gave me a wave from his front window.

Apparently the most beautiful woman in the world has changed her running time, or she took the day off, which got me thinking – what is the optimal number of days to take off?

After my run I called my friend, I.P. Aard, who’s a medical researcher at the National Institute of Running Sciences. She says the day of the week you rest is very important.

“So, I.P., what you mean is the day after a really hard work out or a tough race?”

“Jim, you know I like you, don’t you?”

“Yes, you’ve told me before, I.P. You’re pretty sweet yourself.”

“You’re such a sugar dream. But no, that’s not what I’m saying. You should take Wednesdays off.”

“Wednesdays? Why’s that?”

“Humans have a weekly circadian cycle. That’s the low point of our biorhythmic matrix. If you need to take another day off, Sunday is a secondary low point.”

“You’re kidding. I’ve never heard of this.”

“It’s a recent find. We did a massive study last year, and a follow up one confirmed our findings.”

“Would if I ran on Wednesdays?” I asked.

“You’d have a heightened risk of injury. You don’t gain as much. You may feel lethargic.”

“When you coming out my way, I.P.? I want to show you around here.”

“I don’t have any vacation time saved up. Maybe in late summer, sweet one.”