…if finishing 6th counts as “winning” (duh). But what was I suppose to announce: A Kenyan Wins A Marathon? Yeah, right, I guess I could bury that headline right below Sky is Blue, Tootsie Rolls Are Delicious Little Gobs of Fecally-Reminiscent Goodness, and Guy Fieri Annoys Mankind. That’s not “news”. “News” is something, you know, new. But with all of the sensationally awful news coming from Penn State these days, it’s hard to get an eye-grabbing headline out there.*
Meb Keflezighi finished 6th in New York last Sunday with a time of 2:09:13. That’s pretty good. Not Dick Beardsley good. He ran a 2:08:53 at 1982 Boston (aka “Duel in the Sun”) however, as I’ve established, he’s a Gu shooting Runzilla that patrols Heartbreak Hill shredding runners’ calf muscles. As far as I know, Meb does not have a Godzilla lower body nor shoot lasers and Gu from his eye sockets so, considering his disadvantages, that’s a pretty solid effort.
What will it take for an American – heck, a Canadian (don’t snicker) or a European – to win a marathon major? Do we need a Rob Sloan kind of effort?
Maybe New York is just waiting for…ME.** A natural born American hasn’t won New York since 1979 (Bill Rodgers). Meb (2009) and Alberto Salazar (3 times) won it since but, like Obama***, they were born elsewhere and later became Americans. I was born in Michigan. I have all of my teeth, never played Spin the Bottle with an unattractive relative, and, during two winters of my youth, spent an inordinate amount of time on a snowmobile. I’m as American as excessive flag waving and an inflated sense of entitlement. So, why not me? I feel like I’m entitled. U-S-A, U-S-A!
One little problem. You see, after the whole Boston dust-up this year where they reworked the entrance requirements (i.e. tightened the standards forcing all of us to work harder), I figured it was the first domino that would eventually sweep through all of the major marathons. Every large, popular race would re-evaluate their registration process/entrance requirements. New York, known for its exhaustive lottery system, also has a backdoor entrance. Well, I’m a backdoor kind of guy.****For 2011, a man of my age could automatically qualify and avoid the lottery by running a half marathon in less than 1:30. Really, just 1:30? Really. So, bingo, I knocked off a couple of 1:26-7ish’s this year preparing for the 2012 registration. Based on 2011 standards, I was NYQ’ed!
You can see where this is going right?
That’s right, sons of bitches changed the standard for 2012. I knew it was probably coming but hoping they wouldn’t adjust for one more year. Or, at least, it’d only drop to 1:27. To auto-qualify for 2012, now I’d have to run below 1:23 in a half marathon. 1:23? Am I a fucking ROBOT? Who does that? Do they not realize how many Tootsie Rolls I’ve been eating? Jesus H. Beardsley on a popsicle stick…that’s quite a requirement change.
They’ve also renovated the traditional lottery system so, if you were interested, you better check the new requirements. All of these changes seem designed to specifically keep me away from their marathon. Clever...a more subtle version of a restraining order. I guess they’re not interested in a natural born American winner. And, make no mistake, I was coming to win.
Well, I still want to run NY just to put another notch on my Asics so…I could chance it in the lottery or roll up my sleeves and make my dreams a reality through my sweat, determination, and solid Midwestern work ethic.
In other words, lottery, here I come!
*Could I suggest another though? How ‘bout “Man Continues Abusing Children For Years After All Notified Adults Have Met Their Legally Obligated, Contractual Reporting Requirements So, You Know, Not Their Fault”.
**See how I casually pivoted the conversation back to me? Don’t like it? Screw you, it’s my blog and narcissism reigns around here.
***Take it easy, just throwing the Tea Partiers a bone.
****You know what I mean.