"Even when freshly washed
and relieved of all obvious confections,
children tend to be sticky.
One can only assume
that this has something to do
with not smoking enough."
-- the prophet lebowitz
He's standing at the red light. Oh, how I hate him.
I'm sitting in the car, waiting for Mo to return from her run. I'm still at the point where a slow 2 mile walk is a near-death experience, so she finishes up her masked-miles marathon while I read a book of essays by a crabby New Yorker (if that isn't redundant, and I think it might be. Sorry, KRG).
I look up, and there he is.
These are hard times, and our fuses are all a bit short, so I try to be tolerant. Storm the Capitol? Meh. No mask? Whatever. Diet Pepsi over Diet Coke? Hmm. Getting close.
But he is doing the One Thing I Absolutely Cannot Stand.
There are basically two types of runners in the world: Those I approve of, and those I do not. He falls squarely into the second camp, an aficionado of the Worst Thing you can possibly do as a runner. Worse than snot rockets, worse than running with music blasting out of a speaker, worse than waving hello and forcing me to be friendly, even worse than matching socks.
He is The Guy Who Jogs in Place at the Traffic Light.
Why? WHY? WHY??? The running gods have rewarded your run with a brief respite, a chance to take a nap while waiting for the cars on Hayden Road to run over you despite the blessings of the pedestrian crossing gods. It's a get-out-of-jail free card without the weird Monopoly Monocle Mustache guy. You can just stand there guilt-free, basking in the sun, enjoying the afternoon, catching your breath, not worrying one bit that your HR will drop 10 beats a second.
Does jogging in place even help? If so, why is he out there mostly NOT jogging in place? Save the trouble and jog in the living room.
And yet, he continues. Arms churning, legs pumping up and down, a futile aerobic endeavor that his Garmin will not acknowledge. And if your Garmin doesn't record your exercise, is it truly exercise at all?
Mo is standing near him, also waiting for the light. I try to call her, as she appears to have a clean shot at his jaw, to request that she punch him out. Alas, the phone rings in the passenger seat next to me, having taken the day off. Or maybe it is just ringing in place.
The wait goes on forever, the byproduct of a traffic light that only changes a few times a day since it's for pedestrians, and who cares about pedestrians in Scottsdale? Otherwise, what's the point of owning a Tesla?
I seethe, I fume, I plot mayhem, I ponder whatever happened to the wonderful blogger who wrote "Your baby smells like my cat." And then, finally, here they come.
The guy runs past, oblivious to my rage, too far away for me to accidentally open my door and nail him. I consider running over him in the car, but I drive a Honda Fit and he would likely win. Sure, Dave could replace my sun visors, but Idaho is so far away. And Michigan isn't even a real place.
Mo gets in the car. I ask her about the guy.
"Oh, yeah. I HATE those people," she says.
This is why we are married.
There are only a few absolute truths in life. Babies smell funny. Marathons are exactly 24.85 miles long. There is no Stink Eye like a cat's Stink Eye. And jogging in place at traffic lights should be a Capitol Offense, with a Capitol O.
I redouble my vow to avoid annoying runners. And sticky babies.
I should probably smoke more.
that's him on the left and mo, wearing her bulletproof running vest,
on the right, after the light eventually changed.
p.s. If you jog in place at traffic lights,
please know I'm just kidding. You're OK by me.
No, that's not true. actually I hate you.
Edited by garbanzo a gogo