Wednesday, October 10, 2007

A fun newspaper quote

That's another cool shot by Maniac Brian Pendleton.

While doing the Tahoe Triple, I got interviewed by the local paper. This was pretty neat. As with any of these things, though, the amount of information they gather is quite a bit larger than the story that they print. Many times, meaning is lost or accidentally adjusted when a reporter or editor is trying to fit a story to a particular space.

Here's a weird nugget from my interview:
While it seems an unseemly amount of running - roughly 1,700 miles or 1.3 marathons per week - Lopez knows a friend in Seattle who ran 79 one year.

"And that's just official marathons," said the 41-year-old Lopez, who works as a consultant. "There are others who have run 26.2 miles every day for some period of time, but they weren't involved in an official marathon with bibs and scorekeepers. I am not doing anything that special."
Let's clear up a couple small things. The guy who ran 79? That's my buddy Larry Macon, and he's from San Antonio (not Seattle). He's done 79 twice!

Also, I'm not really a consultant... though if you'd like to hire me to come consult, please contact me. :-)

It's the bit where they've quoted me that I find somewhat puzzling. It kind of makes it sound like I'm trying to prop my races up as something MORE SPECIAL than those folks who have day-to-day marathon streaks. Folks like Sam Thompson's 51-in-50-states-in-50-days, or Jerry Dunn's 200 in the year 2000. There's a guy right now in Louisville attempting to run a marathon for 131 straight days. Then, of course, there's the greatness that was Terry Fox.

The last bit of my quote is the only part that still makes sense absent the surrounding context. Trying to run 50+ (or 60+ or whatever+) marathons in a year is a big undertaking... but compared to some of these other folks, it's just a little thing.

See, the reporter dropped the middle out of what I was trying to say, and then he glued the two ends together.

What I was trying to say is that while running a bunch of marathons is hard, in my opinion it is quite a bit easier than trying to go out there every day to do a marathon distance. I could never have the mental fortitude to do it on my own every day. And in the case of Sam, I would imagine that the logistics associated with route finding make that marathon distance even more challenging to complete every day. Heck, I get nervous about getting lost in regular races. Trying to figure out a course on my own would be rough! 51 times in 50 days? Wow.

Give me my marked courses and my frequent (or even infrequent) aid stations. Give me a few other runners doing the same thing.

Makes life easier.

Compared to Sam, what I'm doing is just a little thing.

And compared to Terry Fox? I don't rate. The man had one leg.

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