In black shorts, a black running shirt, black socks and black tennis shoes, my white legs are probably reflecting more light back onto Dolores Park than the windows of the former Norwegian Lutheran Church. I am just feeling the stride of my third mile and about to mount an attack up the hill, which will surely leave me wheezing like I need my inhaler. I check again that my ID and house keys are still held together by the binder clip in my pocket. The woman in front of me, who just jogged out of an Adidas commercial, might mistake it for an obscene gesture. Just because she has no stains on her spandex doesn’t mean the wet spots on my cotton shorts are anything to worry over; even so I think she has the 9 and the 1 pressed and her finger hovering over the second 1 just in case.
But I soldier on. I’ve got MC Frontalot on my Nike+, and I don’t even pay attention to her or to the tanned jocks passing me on their ninth mile (“Just a quick workout today, bro; I’ve got a Tri this weekend.”) It is sheer NerdCore pushing me up the hill. It is what lets me walk into a gym for the first time since 1987 and not run back to the safety of an office chair and an LCD monitor.
I could slow down and walk on the stairs in the park, but I keep pushing. I am a middle aged nerd and I am claiming this body just as hard as anyone else on this hill can claim theirs. I may be slow going up but I am pulling fast downstream speeds here. And I check my email at the top of the hill.
(Shout-out to my friends at the Original BANC. I would have posted this on Tumblr but it turned into a blog post. Go figure.)