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? Or when they find an inhabited planet, do they come down and get in a workout by entering races?

I checked a bunch of race finisher lists for names that sounded alien-like. 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,, 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 crossed my path today. I gazed at her, enthralled and awed. I can’t blow this, I can’t say anything stupid, I thought to myself as I approached.

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 accused me of being a gang member. He smiled 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. A couple, obvious non-runners who were on the other side and choose to wait, glared at me after I sprinted across before the signal changed. 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 the guy at the intersection.

“This is the second time in a week you’ve called me. How are you, buttercup?“

traffic light

“Just have a question…. you know what, you are 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, hanging up. 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. I caught the guy who lives in the corner house looking at me through his front window. He probably still thinks I’m up to no good.

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 best day of the week to rest?

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., it must be the day after a really hard workout 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 anyway, to answer your question, 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.”

Running Sock Astrology

For many years I’ve suspected that personality types can be identified by sock styles. An old pal, Taul N. Leene, who heads the Office of Running Psychology at the National Institute of Running Sciences, passed through recently, and I met up with him. When I brought up my running sock theory, he got all excited.

“You are very observant,” Taul said. “We just finished a study, and it’s absolutely true.”

Taul said if you wear low-cut anklets that barely rise above the shoe, you are very conventional and dependable. You like people and animals, but most of all, butterflies. However, if the TV breaks down, you get very, very angry.

My favorite sock style is medium chimney. Taul pointed at me and said, “Oh, I know something about you that you never realized. Medium chimney people like to dance. Generally they’re kind, but they can be cruel to leafy plants. They enjoy changing the time on clocks. And…here’s what’ll surprise you – you’d rather have packages delivered to you by a company that uses camels instead of trucks.”

Todd O.

I thought about it a moment. I realized Taul was right. I’d love a camel to pull up in front of my house.

“How ‘bout people who wear over-the-calf tube socks?” I asked. My friend, Todd Oglesbee, pictured at left, loves his knee-highs.

“They’re the life of the party, however, they have issues with the phases of the moon and solar flares. They love all living things except marsupials and segmented worms.

“The most free-sprited group is the one that wears no socks. When they take a bath, they have the shower on, too. They laugh and laugh at shapes they see in the clouds, and they send text messages to animals.”

“Animals can be reached by phone?” I asked.

“We never got to the bottom of that.” Taul said.

Five No-nonsense Tips for Running in the Rain

Everyone knows that water melts witches, so running in the rain is nearly stress-free since there’s little chance a hex will be put on you. If you’re a witch, not even the best rain gear is 100% effective, so it’s best to stay inside and avoid any possibility of being melted.

By the way, witches, putting hexes on people is extremely rude. If you’re out for a run and see a group of mortals doing the same, please refrain from working your black magic. Being considerate of others is something the witch community really needs to embrace.

The five tips follow this photo of a runner enjoying a rainy run thanks to tip #2.

Tip #1 – Place these tips in a plastic sleeve so they won’t get soaked in case you need to refer to them mid-run.

Tip #2 – Before going for a run, read the five tips over and over until memorized. You don’t want to stop to read them again while running.

Tip #3 – Singing “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ on my Head” is appropriate while running, but not in the shower afterward. The shower stream strikes the shoulders and upper back, not your head.

Tip #4 – Runners should keep in mind that rain falls mainly on the plain except in Spain. As well, if you get soaked, a bloke from Roanoke will poke you in the throat.

Tip #5 – Soaked running clothes should be thrown in the corner and reused for a pleasant chill on the next hot day.

Watchful Eyes Keeping Tabs on Me

In my first blog post I mentioned an intersection near my house where I saw a very attractive woman running. I checked my watch and whenever I go for a run, I make sure to run past at the same time.

I haven’t seen her, but I continue to stop at the intersection to tighten my shoe laces and stretch just in case she comes along.

I was doing this during my last run when a homeowner came out and started wheeling his trash container away. He turned and said. “Are you waiting for your gang friends?”

“No, I’m not a gang-member.”

He started toward his house again, then stopped. “Are you looking for cars to steal”

“No, just taking a break from my run – doing a little stretching.”

He started toward his house and turned around yet again. “Good luck seeing her. She runs past often enough. I’m sure you’ll catch her one of these times.”

As he walked away, my jaw hung open. How did he know? He must have seen me that first day.