Party at the track. Runners, walkers, dogs. I meander along in the outside lane I call home, content to ramble along while watching.
But I can’t run anymore. I’m being passed by casual joggers and three-legged dogs. I find myself humming Randy Newman’s “I’m Dead and I don’t Know it.” At what point do I give up the ghost?
Another day of grinding out 13-minute miles, pretending someday I will get faster. Pretending I don’t know I won’t.
But the effort is real. The wind is real. The turns, the back straight, the twinge in my knee. Real. Real. Real.
Maybe I’m dead. But for three miles on a cinder track on a cloudy day, I’m alive. It’s not much. But it’s all I have.
I turn off Randy Newman’s “I’m Dead” and turn on Eddie’s “I’m Still Alive.” I may die, but I’ll die doing what I loved.
3 miles,track, 6 p.m., 88 degrees
12:59, 13:00, 13:32