Nothing, as far as I know, except that they are both topics within this single blog entry.
Starting with the former, how tough (and slightly crazy) do you have to be to run in the Antarctic Ice Marathon? Now, I'm up for a challenge as much as the next runner but, c'mon, spending 4- 5 hours or more battling the elements while racing across the frozen tundra (and I ain't talking Lambeau Field here) for 26.2 miles? I bet the crowd support at this event would best be described as "sparse". There are 9 competitors in this years event...placing your odds at winning around 11%. Not bad. Included in the field is England's Tim Harris who will complete his seventh marathon in seven weeks on seven continents which is apparently some sort of world record. No word on what kind of vacation time this guy gets. I want his job.
If you don't think that's quite enough of a challenge, I guess you might be more interested in the ultra marathon (62.1 miles) kicking off a few days later at the same location? Apparently, there are 3 French participants planning to complete both the marathon and the ultra.
The marathon is scheduled for December 12th while the ultra kicks off on December 15th. Good luck. If I can collect enough cans to arrange for the $15,000 registration fee, maybe I'll join them one day. That must be one helluva participant t-shirt.
As for the latter, George Washington, I must confess to being slightly amused while recently reading a bio about him regarding the venomous attacks on his personal character he absorbed while president. He was labeled as "treasonous" and senile by his contemporaries, namely Jefferson and Madison, for espousing Federalist views. I found it especially ironic considering the current political climate in which those who disagree with President Bush have been labeled as unpatriotic, treasonous, and cowardly. Jefferson and Madison, anti-federalists, were the pre-cursor to the formation of the early Republican party. The war of words has been there from the beginning, I guess.
Fortunately, old Georgie knew better than to stoop to his rivals level and remained above the fray. He was aware that history would stand taller than petty partisan bickering.