April 14, 2014


There were Boy Scouts volunteering at the Eisenhower Marathon, young kids with blue button ups and yellow scarves. Cub Scouts, then, to be accurate. I remember, because I was one. Same town. Same outfit. I remember all of it fondly, even considering the various political controversies I was not yet aware of, but which now must color my opinion somewhat, even if I wish otherwise. You know what you know, and you can't unknow it.

That said, my childhood was much better for the time spent with that group. I can say that for sure. There wasn't any political or religious indoctrination that I recall, other than an attempt at instilling a certain respect for nature, and what we might now call "primitive skills". I made friends. I got dirty. I was a kid, even if I sucked at every knot.

I cut myself with a sharp knife and learned how to bake a potato in a shallow dirt pit with hot coals. I remember those things, and feeling some inkling of adventure. This isn't to say I turned into anything like a rugged outdoorsman, or even a particularly active teenager. I left the group, when I moved, basically sucked at every sport, and focused mostly on books and video games.

Maybe it left no lasting impression on me, providing nothing but some fun at the time. But there are worse things than that, for sure.

And so all four times I ran past the aid station, staffed by young, trembling hands, I slowed down and thanked them for their time, the water, the powerade. Maybe nothing about that race will make an impression on them, but hopefully they had fun.


  1. Lot I can say on this as you may imagine. But I will leave it at thanks. I needed that.

    1. Glad to hear it. Probably a lot more I could've said as well, given that all my early childhood friends were made there.