Skip to content

Shame, redux

My neighbor Sam has been a huge help to me as I’ve been writing a series of novels. So when she told me in July that she was planning to run in the Philadelphia Marathon, I was determined to be supportive of her. Here’s a quote from an email I sent to her in response to the news she was training for the marathon:

I have this idea that I’d like to run a marathon some day. Being that the max distance I’ve ever run is three miles–and that was 12 years ago–I’m thinking I won’t be running a marathon anytime soon. I could possibly cheer you on at mile 23 or whatever is the hardest spot, assuming the weather is good and I have nothing better to do, of course.

She responded

I think the marathon goes by the fall bridge, maybe you can run a few miles with me!!

To which I wrote:

Run a few miles with you? You got the part where the last time I ran “a few miles” was 12 years ago, right? I might be willing to run a few hundred feet with you though.

Truer words have never been spoken, er, written. Today was the Philly Marathon, and indeed it did go right by the Falls Bridge (which is at the bottom of the hill we live on). I’d been tracking her progress online, so I knew about when she’d be running by, and there I was. I ran out to join her, and she was all, “Oh hi! I’m happy to see you. I’m tired.” Yeah, running twenty-one miles in four hours will do that to a girl.

Speaking of which, did I mention that she’d run twenty-one miles in four hours? Just five miles left to go, and I would have liked to have joined her for it and cheered her on. I had to settle for running less than half a mile, at which point I stood gasping, my hands on my knees, barely able to call out, “You’re…almost…done…” Pant, pant. “Good…luck!”


  1. Kristan wrote:

    LOL. That was sweet of you, and I’m sure even the short distance helped rally her spirits.

    We chased Andy’s dad around downtown Cincy a couple years ago when he was doing the marathon. It was kind of fun, but also kind of crazy, haha.

    Sunday, November 20, 2011 at 9:38 pm | Permalink
  2. Lori wrote:

    Shoot. I run 2.5 miles a day and you couldn’t have PAID me to run along with someone in the marathon!!! You’re a good friend…for at least half a mile. ;)

    Monday, November 21, 2011 at 8:42 pm | Permalink
  3. Sonja wrote:

    Kristan, She did say it was a big help. She’d actually come down with a 24 hour bug the night before, so she felt like crap, and as the marathon literally goes two blocks from where we live at mile 21, she was seriously thinking about just going home. But she stuck it out and said that me running with her that little bit did boost her spirits to continue.

    Lori, I am a good friend for half a mile. That’s a good summation of me as a person overall. LOL

    Wednesday, November 23, 2011 at 1:09 pm | Permalink