Friday, May 2, 2008

Spirit of the Marathon redux

What does "redux" mean, really? It's one of those cool sounding words that turns up in trendy writing. Well, I checked to make sure I wasn't misusing it, and it in fact does mean "brought back, resurgent."

Which is the appropriate term for last night's reshowing of the Spirit of the Marathon movie. It first premiered in January, with an encore presentation a few weeks later. Now it is airing in various cities throughout the spring and summer, apparently in conjunction with big races in the area. This week's show was the Seattle/Spokane presentation for the Bloomsday Run in Spokane. Luckily the Spirit of the Marathon distributors don't seem to know that Seattle is far, far away from Spokane! Of course perhaps they figure that some of us on this side will be heading east for the run this Sunday. (As I am.)

I am afraid, though, that "resurgent" is not the term to describe the Marysville showing of the movie last night. When I arrived just before it began at 7:30 p.m. (I went to Marysville instead of Everett because I had been at my parents' house and it was closer), there was only one other woman seated in the theatre. And not to make assumptions, but she didn't look like a runner. (Not that you have to be a runner to enjoy and appreciate this movie! That's why it's so sad that it hasn't attracted a bigger following.)

Perhaps she had come into the theatre by mistake, because not too long after the movie began she got up and left. By then two other people had come in, so all in all there were three of us for the entire movie. Unfortunately the other two got up at the end of the movie and didn't wait for the extras, which were great. They probably didn't know about it. I almost felt like I should tell them, but I felt too awkward to shout at them in the big empty theatre! (They were quite a bit ahead of me in the rows.)

I wrote in January how much I loved and was moved by Spirit of the Marathon. This did not change in my second viewing. The second time around was maybe even better (except that I did not get quite as choked up at the ending, just a little bit), because I was able to pick up on things that got past me the first time around. And it's especially timely now that Deena Kastor has just won the women's Olympic trials. I can hardly wait for the DVD to be available. It's one for the library.

I wish that there had been more of an effort to get people into this movie. I had recommended it to several people prior to the encore showing in February, although I don't know if anyone took me up on it. I was kind of too discouraged by that to try to promote it again. I did recommend it to one attorney I know who is running the Vancouver marathon this weekend (and even found out it is showing in Vancouver on Saturday), but although interested, she had other plans on Thursday and expected to be busy at the marathon expo on Saturday.

If I were a teacher at a local high school, I would have tried to arrange a student trip to this movie. It's perfect for track and cross country runners, but even more I think it would be great for ordinary kids to see, since most of the runners were very ordinary people, not elite athletes at all. Of course all the runners were adults, but most of the actors in the movies they watch are adults also, so that shouldn't be too off-putting.

I figured that trying to get any of my friends to go would be an exercise in futility, considering the (lack of) luck I've had trying to get them to go to 5K's. Of course this would involve sitting rather than running/walking, and optional popcorn, but still, people are very stingy with their free time, and might just prefer Grey's Anatomy to a running movie. (I myself was a bit disgruntled at missing The Office—why didn't I think to tape it?—but I can watch it in reruns, or perhaps online if I can ever get that to work for me.)

Before I went to the movie last night I went by my parents' house to pick up some soup (Good Greens Soup, which is a favorite staple for me), and I was planning to head to the Y afterward. But the sun was out, and according to the tide calendar so was the tide, so I decided to take a quick walk on the beach instead. I could easily allow an hour's walk, maybe a bit more.

My one mistake was heading to the beach still wearing the slip-on New Balance shoes I'd been wearing. I had somehow forgotten how sand flips into the open heel of the shoe, especially when walking briskly! I took off at a smart clip and by the time I'd gone a mile or so I had any number of grains of sand inside my shoes irritating me. You'd think a little sand would not be so much of a problem! But it was truly like a grain of sand inside an oyster making it grow a pearl. Except that the results were not so lovely. I ended up with a small but painful blister on the tip of my right big toe. Quite a pearl! (Later at home I drained it with a sharp needle and it no longer bothers me.)

I took more time on my beach walk than I had planned, even though I jogged part of the way back to save time (another thing that is not so good to do in slip-on shoes), and that is how I ended up going to the Marysville movie theatre rather than Everett.

Perhaps the movie inspired me in doing my semi-long run this morning. Knowing that the race in Spokane will prevent my typical long run on Sunday, I felt I needed to pick up some extra mileage today. I ended up running 9½ miles (including my walk home from Starbucks at the end). That gives me 21½ for the week so far. I'll only need to do 8½ on Sunday (12K plus at least a mile warmup) to get me to 30 miles for the week. If I do a longer warmup I'll even go over, which wouldn't hurt.

I was able to squeeze in a massage at lunchtime today, which was great because I haven't had one since before the Whidbey run. She did a great job on my calves, quads, and hips. Painful, but in a good way!

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