Thursday, June 11, 2009

Part 5 - I Forgot About the Naked People

A pedestrian overpass loomed ahead of us, stretching from one side of the street, over to the other. It was jam packed with spectators of all sorts; regular people, police officers, firemen, TV crews with huge cameras hanging over the size. So I knew we had made it to the front.

I looked down and saw the rubber mat that would register our chips starting our official time for the course. An old Journey song was playing over the loud speaker and the crowd collectively sang (screamed is more accurate) along. We sounded amazingly good for having never practiced together!

Then I saw the first instance of the “Holy Rollers”. There are small groups of people that camp out at various locations on the route holding big signs and shouting messages of “salvation” over bull horns. I am very glad that they have the right in this country to state their opinions publicly and I also admire them greatly for standing up and taking action for what they believe in. In fact, this small group was right in the middle of the road. They put themselves right smack dab in the middle of the sea of crazy people. And there were A LOT more of us than them. They must be very brave. (Of course, a lot of confidence comes with knowing you have the Lord on your side!) More power to them! I mean that sincerely.

That does not mean I agree with what they are saying and I can’t say I enjoyed starting a significant running event listening to how “You are going to hell! You must change your sinning ways. God hates what you are doing and you will spend eternity burning in damnation and great suffering unless you turn to Jesus now.”

So I turned to my friend Jesus Gonzales running next to me…. Just kidding.

I never understood these groups. What am I doing that God hates so much? Getting outdoors and sharing a healthy activity with my fellow humans in a spirit of good will and sportsmanship? Promoting a vegetarian diet so we’re not contributing to animal suffering? Staying fit? I mean, are they talking to us???

Then I saw the naked people.

I forgot about the naked people and therefore I hadn’t warned Kris about them. Just as I stepped over the starting line a couple walked in front of me naked as the day they were born. I thought “Ewe!!!!” Not because they were naked. But because they were naked, sweaty and there wasn’t much room to stay out of their way. I really didn’t want to bump up against their sweaty nakedness! Ewe!

The good news was that they were young and fit. So it wasn’t a terrible shock. But I felt really bad for the guy. Poor kid. He looked young and like he was in his prime. But his ‘mister’ looked like a little ‘master’. It was tiny!!!! I thought, “Wow. He either doesn’t feel insecure about his body or he has over come it. And look at him now. Walking around with tens of thousands of people to see! Good for him!!!”
But more on the naked people later.

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