Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Of rain, morning runs and wimpage

On weekdays, 3:00 a.m. running is my usual sweet spot.  The demands of work, running, my other side hobbies and attempts at being an attentive husband relegate me to 3:00 a.m. jaunts through downtown San Francisco. 

I enjoy these runs mostly.  It is quiet, I get to see wildlife (not the animal kind) and it never fails to get me in the mind set to go do battle against the forces of good and evil in the software world.

Where I draw the line on my morning running insanity is when I have to run in the rain at night.  Call me a pansie, wuss, wimp, nancy boy or any other term you want...I just hate running in the rain at night.  There are many good, scientific reasons for this...of which I will defend here.

First, my Grandmother on my dad's side beat into my head that you don't go outside with a wet head.  As a kid, I heard it one hundred seventeen thousand times "Don't go out with a wet head!".  I know that this is bunk, but the idea of going outside and creating a wet head in real time violates my Grandmother's teaching in spirit and result.

Second, why take that the chance that acid rain is or is not something real?  My time withering face has challenges as it is.  It did not start great, so why give Father Time the middle finger and speed up the process by dumping acid rain on my skin? 

Third, another Grandmother maxim.  "He is is so stupid, he does not even know to come in out of the rain."  People around me rightfully question my intellect daily...why take the chance that not coming in out of the rain serves to fortify that idea?  I can see a member of my Board of Directors talking over my fate after a bad quarter, setting his papers down and staring at the rest of the board.  "And to further substantiate our concerns, "He is is so stupid, he does not even know to come in out of the rain."   I can prove my stupidity in other creative ways thank you very much.

Fourthly, running in the rain causes marital stress.  I live in a condo in the heart of downtown San Francisco.  I have no mud room or other place to demud, undress or rinse off sludge...except the master bathroom shower.   The last few times I did this, I found myself sleeping on the couch...armed...afraid to sleep.  My wife, normally a sweet woman, develops the disposition of a chainsaw stuck on high when confronted with caked and splattered mud in the shower, brown tinged white towels and drying running gear in our nicely appointed master bath.

Finally, when confronted with waking up at 3:00 a.m. and seeing pouring down rain, my reptilian brain function reminds me how warm the bed is.  It reflects on the soft comfort of blankets, a sleeping wife and two spooning furry dogs.  It reminds me that all I have to do to start a warm caffiene drip is to hit a switch and that the morning papers are full of interesting stuff.  If all that fails and I waffle towards going out in the rain, the GO BACK TO BED IDIOT voice usually chimes in.

Call me what you will, but rain turns me into a running wimp...and I did not run this morning! 

(Heaven help those around me.)

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