On I went, out of the wood, passing the man leading without knowing I was going to do so. Flip-flap, flip-flap, jog-trot, jog-trot, curnchslap-crunchslap, across the middle of a broad field again, rhythmically running in my greyhound effortless fashion, knowing I had won the race though it wasn't half over, won it if I wanted it, could go on for ten or fifteen or twenty miles if I had to and drop dead at the finish of it, which would be the same, in the end, as living an honest life like the governor wanted me to. -Alan Sillitoe, "Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner"

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


An email arrived in my inbox Sunday morning...  Yep, 21 November, two weeks after New York, I will be at the start line of another marathon.  Registration for the Flying Monkey closed in a record 32 minutes and I just barely eked my way in.  If training doesn't kill me, this race just might.

(Also, if you're curious about the race organizer, he blogs photos of his son in dangerous situations.  Enjoy it and share it with your friends and loved ones - his blog has appeal for those amongst us who love cute pictures of children and those who secretly wish they could put children in the oven.)

The email's pretty funny.  Let's hope I'm still laughing on the 22nd of November.

My groovy monkeysters, so cool that you decided to stop by and dance with us this Fall.  And wow, just wow.  32 minutes, you filled the place.  Impressive.  I dream that your enthusiasm won't scare the monkeys into a rumble.  Cuz we all want this to come off starry and all.

Even though running is stupid.  And Monkey is stupider.  Groovy stupid, but stupid.

Anyhow.  You are registered.  You are in.  And though you may regret this decision, monkey is coming and maybe you should go and run on some hills.  Not that you can train for this.  But at least you can get your groove on.

Over the coming weeks and months, I will send you bits of information.  In the meantime, feel free to peruse our website, 
http://www.harpethhillsmarathon.com , for information about the marathon and lodging.  And you can follow monkey tweets at http://www.twitter.com/hhflyingmonkey .

Lastly, to all those of you who gave a few dollars to help us rebuild our broken home, my deepest gratitude goes out to you.  Thank you so much!  (

Some details now -

- You cannot actually train for this race.  Don't even try.  It is futile.  But running is stupid groovy, so don't stop now.

- Dallas once said, "if the runners want fluid on course, they should pray for rain".  Dallas is a wise man.  While you will be lucky to get any fluid out on the course, but we are hoping to provide it to you about 18 times, and it should mostly consist of water and lemon / lime Gatorade.  And energy gels too.  Hopefully GU brand.

- No, I have no idea what the weather will be.  There is a distinct possibility that we will have some.  Who really knows, though.  Especially here in September.

- And this. As always, we are looking for volunteers on race morning.  So if you know of anybody smart enough not to run who wants to come out and spend a sweltering or freezing morning in the park helping out, please let us know.  Volunteers are awesome!


  1. You are amazing. Or crazy. I haven't quite decided which yet.

    but you are stupid groovy :-)

  2. Wow! You are a running machine! My training for NYC Marathon just started last Sunday; one day after my first marathon. :)

  3. Thanks :)
    I'm flattered that a woman who just ran a mountain marathon (as her first, no less) has called me a "running machine." Nice!

  4. i am either a) way too much of an old fart; b) out of touch; c) overly maternal or d) all of the above - i don't even understand what this race is? are there real monkeys? is this a joke race? is it really hard and WHY IS HE ALLOWED TO WATCH A CHILD ALONE! hahahah

    I should not have clicked on his blog....