July 29, 2015

Track workout today. I was thinking about the buddies today.

The Chicago Marathon had many different names but the running buddies always showed up no matter what is was called. The Chicago Marathon was still 26.2 miles and the running year revolved around this race. Preparations varied from year to year but the team, coached by McGough, was always ready to run. McGough had been trying to coax Jerry K. to a better pace. If you have ever run one of these races, this is something you want to hear or that you completely ignore. Jerry’s legs were burning, someone was telling him he could do it, but this was not the kind of fun that he wanted to be having.

The marathon in Chi-town is known for its large crowds that gather in every neighborhood the race intersects. Tom was encouraging but Jerry began to see an opportunity to kick it into gear. At one turnaround point in Lincoln Park the large crowd had settled in as the constant stream of runners passed their neighborhood. Jerry decided to get the enthusiasm rolling as he turned around and began to run backwards in front of Tom. With both index fingers at the ends of his extended arms pointed directly at Tom, he announced loudly to the crowd, “Hey everybody, give it up for the senior citizen. He has escaped from the old folks home and I need to get him back there by noon.” The crowd spontaneously erupted. They began to chant for Tom to go faster thinking he was “on the lamb” and that a faster pace would save him from “the home”. Tom was all the way back to North Avenue before the noise began to fade. Jerry looked at Tom and giggled for 18 more miles.

1977 or so at the inaugural St. Raymond’s Run. Favorite song today: Just The Way You Are performed by Barry White.

JPD at the Raymond's Run

JPD at the Raymond’s Run

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