Monday, December 6, 2010

A Bit of The Spirit of the Season

I know not whether Bedford Falls High School's football team won a championship this autumn. Regardless of whether they did, somewhere the entire Bailey clan - from Zsu Zsu to grumpy old Ma herself - is smiling ear-to-ear. On Saturday, the Pioneers of New Providence High School sent their longtime coach Frank Bottone - at 78 years young - into retirement with his 8th Sectional Championship. Considering that New Providence had last won a title in 1989 - a/k/a as "A Time Before Any of the Current Players Were Born" - you might understand why the good folks of New Providence considered Saturday's win to be a pretty big deal. And why a lot of other folks - including those of us who have never lived a day in New Providence - smiled a bit at reading the final score as well. If I knew Coach Bottone at all, then I would be tempted to ask him what he wants Santa to bring him for Christmas.....although I suspect he has already received it.

A wonderful little get-together in Metuchen yesterday morning. It was quite cold in Metuchen as quite a few of us gathered to either run in a 5K race or walk in a 1 mile walk to raise money for the Arthritis Foundation. In a lifetime spent driving in and around Metuchen I had never realized - until Gidg and I ran there last December - just how many changes of elevation one can run on and over in Metuchen.......although I suppose in retrospect the fact that there is a railroad trestle right in the center of the downtown area should have alerted me to the fact that something was afoot.

I think that there were in fact more people who ran or walked this year than did last year during the inaugural edition of this race. Given that the race organizers have been blessed by good weather back-to-back years and that it seems as if everyone who takes part in it has really enjoyed themselves, I would anticipate that it is an event that shall continue to grow. Presuming that I feel well enough to run next year as I did last year and this year, I shall again take part in it. For reasons that seem almost inexplicable to me - given the cold temperatures in which we run and course over which we run - Metuchen is the place where I run the fastest. Yesterday I shaved another 19 seconds off of my best-ever 5K time. Again, everything is relative and I was a better runner, setting a new "personal best" would actually be more impressive than it might sound. Still, I am pretty happy about it.

This little get-together on December's first Sunday undergoing yet another growth spurt in time for its third go-round would most assuredly be a good thing. As Liv said as the four of us were standing around inside Novita staying warm pre-race - awash in a sea of folks wearing Christmas-themed outfits, "For the first time this year it feels like Christmas." Indeed it did. And that too most assuredly is a good thing.

-AK

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