At my age that’s about the time you should be settling down in bed with a good book and a clear conscience having said your prayers and not be downstairs shouting at the current affairs programme on TV and sipping red wine while waiting for Hitler’s Henchmen on Discovery History.

The title refers to my day yesterday. My 42nd Birthday.

Braille Buttons

Braille Buttons

All my face-book friends said Happy Birthday (a great little algorithm) and some of my twitter friends and a few of my real life friends  – although to be honest the three groups do overlap a fair bit so it’s not as dismal a picture as I might be letting on – sniff, no, honestly, I’m fine, it’s just a bit of dust in my eye…….

In a frantic effort to get some long distances under my belt I went for a long run yesterday – 22 miles to be exact. Not exactly Grellan but decent enough.

It wasn’t as fluid as last Sunday’s 19 miler.  Not as fluid is a bit of a euphemism for having to drag the fuck out of it. There were a few reasons for this lack of fluidity.

firstly I wasn’t able to detach from reality so I couldn’t trance out and had to count all the miles. This is a drag on all the miles up to about mile 14. Then you can knuckle down and push out the miles.

Secondly I had followed my low nutrition strategy of the run last Sunday which, while not disastrous, made the going harder as you had to concentrate on your effort as your brain and muscles were in a pitched battle for the ever dwindling glycogen stores. This low nutrition strategy is a bit of a cod and is mainly because I’m lazy and couldn’t be bothered with the discipline of good long distance nutrition. In a race setting or at an ultra it wouldn’t and couldn’t be tolerated (by your body if nobody else).

Thirdly, I hadn’t really shifted last Sunday’s long run from my legs.

The last one wasn’t too much of an issue and in a way was insightful as to how you’d feel in a back to back marathon scenario.

Now, how do you get time to run 22 miles on your Birthday? Well, if I was serious about it I’d get up sometime after 02:00hrs and crank out 4 solid hours in the pitch dark avoiding the others on the margins of society and then be back home for breakfast and the school/work run.

Not me.

I just take the day off work.

Due to some deep psychological scar from my childhood I have always taken a day of annual leave for my birthday. What the psychological scar is I don’t know but the idea of having no homework on your birthday has always appealed to me. This coupled with the fact that Jesus gets a holiday for his birthday has convinced me that only a fool works on their birthday.

This also allows me time to make the rice crispie cakes for the party, faff about, drink coffee, stare into the middle distance (now because of eyesight rather than meditation) and generally contemplate what a lucky fucker I am to have rolled a double 6 in life (And to be grateful for it).

As I was pissing about yesterday on the motorbike I was parking it up and a old bloke came up to me to start talking motorbikes. As an aside – motorbikes generally only attract small boys and granddads. Women hate them. This is a shocking thing to find out once you’ve bought the bloody thing. Apparently women prefer someone who enjoys a cuddle and listening to their problems – not a man then.

Anyway the granddad and me started to chat about all the bikes we’ve both owned and the crazy things/places we’ve been on them (he once rode an 80cc bike from Ireland to Italy and back – a sore hole was how he described it). As the conversation dwindled out he said:

Most people spend their whole life waiting on the sidelines hoping to be called onto the pitch. That never happens. You’ve got to make your own game.

Then we talked about the weather and were on our separate ways.

that’s about as deep as this puddle gets.


7 responses to “22:42

  1. I’ve adopted that day off thing ever since the YBP days. Pity my birthday isn’t during the fishing season though. That’s the parents fault

  2. Sounds like a great birthday, and very insightful (what does that mean?) comment from the old boy. Carpe the diem, I think….. MtM

  3. Belated happy birthday. To be honest her who must be obeyed told me about it but I forgot. Nice 22 btw; I’m stuck on 2 at the moment… There’s time yet

  4. Happy Birthday Richard, you made me laugh as usual, never did the day off thing myself but i will consider it in March, its time to get a grip and get on that pitch, hope you enjoyed the buttons

  5. 22 on a diet of fat is always a tough slog, The day off is the only way to go. Like the good lord mine is kinda obligatory. Role on the next 42.

  6. Happy belated bidet Richard. Sorry I missed it on Twitter – you’re in my sleeping hours often (like Scott Brown), which has its advantages for the latter’s tweets. Next year I’ll be expecting a 43k run on your birthday, nothing less.

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