Archive for February, 2010

February 21, 2010

Sun, Snow and Ice

I ran 13 minutes without stopping. I ran from the apartment to the pier to the boat basin. I kept checking my watch to see if I’d broke my 13-minute barrier. It was a little cold and very sunny.

At one point an older woman was running slowly towards me. She looked like I might hope to look in 25 years – fit, a little wrinkled, game. She told me, “Be careful. It’s icy ahead.”

Yes, it was icy ahead. So I took small steps on the patches of glassy ice. I felt like a prize fighter warming up. I did not stop.

I felt good. I felt proud. I am like that older woman along the path by the Hudson River. I might run slowly, but at least I run. And I watch for those icy patches. 

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February 18, 2010

Kickball

I remember the shouts of kids on the corner. The kickball games.

The thwack of the ball as you kick it with the side of your foot. The sound of canvas High Tops hitting the rubber ball. You kicked it very very hard. You hold your breath. It is going far but you can’t watch the ball. Because you have to run. Run as hard and fast as you can. Footsteps faster than your breath as you make your way to first base. Safe at first. Stay. Stay. How come you didn’t get farther? It was such a good kick. It was out into the field. Way out.

No time for thinking. Your brother’s up to kick. Time to cheer him on.

Your cheer becomes a part of the shouts. The shouts of the kids on the corner of South Crescent and Belleplain. Park Ridge, Illinois.

February 17, 2010

Lindsey Jacobellis

I feel really bad about Jacobellis wiping out. I know the feeling. I wipe out a lot. I wipe out almost everyday. But I glance around and hope no one is watching. Then, I get up. I dust myself off quickly and I go. I pretend nothing happened. “Huhn? Me? Wipe out? No! Not at all!”

It must be really stressful to have your whole future and identity depend on your balance on a board for a few minutes flying down an icey hill. A few minutes matters a lot. All the training. All the hours. All the work. Gone in an instant.

I gasp and feel sick when I see figure skaters fall too. I hate it. And yet, I keep watching and gasping and thanking God it’s not me. That when I fall, I hope no one laughs. I hope the cameras are not on me. That millions are not watching. Because life is hard enough. And everyone falls.