Friday, February 19, 2010

Seen from the bike seat...

I've never caught the bridge deck of the Murray Morgan in the raised position. Wish I would have been there when they brought 'er up. In any case, it made a perfect frame for Mount Rainier on a clear and bright Tacoma morning. Bring on the sunshine... we're ready to play outside.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Always daydreaming...

This is our coffee shop. Worn wood floors, well-used tables, mismatched chairs. Vintage light fixtures, some hanging, others on tables. Fireplace or pot-bellied stove in the middle of the room. Sunken area with a big, wrap-around couch pointed at an old 1940's tv console that has been hollowed out and had a new set placed inside. Bearskin rug. That's right, I said it. The tv will show old bike races and running events... live broadcasts when they're on. The walls will be a showcase for local artists, including our kids. We'll carry a small selection of basic bike parts, nothing exotic. And we'll do free, simple repairs while you enjoy a cuppa joe. On another wall, we'll carry a couple different types of running shoes. Only stuff we wear and love ourselves. There will be a small shelf of local, bottled micro-brews for sale, and possibly some unique glassware from the breweries. Outside there will be a fire pit, and we'll project classic outdoors movies onto the wall. We'll sponsor races and rides. You'll want to hang out here. It will be a clubhouse for anyone living a life self-propelled in Grit City.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Run like a kid. And when you can, run with a kid...

This is me and my dad warming up for a road race, I'm guessing sometime around '84. On mornings like this, we would spend some time jogging, stretching, pinning on numbers... trying to shake off jitters with routine. We'd start together, then Dad would run ahead, finish the race, and come back for me. We always finished together.

I'm not sure if enjoyed running for its own sake in those days, but it was important to my dad... and that was all that mattered. He was very good, eventually amassing a room full of ribbons, trophies, and wall plaques that formed a shrine to the sacrifices he will now tell you he regrets.

Dad's stare-down with cancer is causing him to scrutinize all the years spent in pursuit of transient prizes. But I never think, "If only my old man hadn't spent so much time running, maybe we could've done (fill in the blank)." No, I think instead of mornings spent on the road... and promise to give memories like those to my own kids.

Are you sharing running with someone?

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Brooks ID, Tacoma Runners, and my horn...

A forewarning: This is going to be one of those posts where I grab onto my horn with both hands, dig in, and toot loudly. Paints a picture, don't it? Anyway, on to the news...

Brooks Running has managed to look past my unhealthy obsession with beer and bacon, and selected me for its ID (Inspire Daily) program. I've been a fan of the local company for some time, so it's exactly like the cool kids waving me over to their lunch table in the 7th grade. Except this actually happened.

I'm a Brooks groupie for several reasons. They have a commitment to helping runners develop at every level of the sport, they produce excellent gear, and they back it up with good service. Also — and this speaks to me as a marketer — Brooks has an uncommon attention to individual customers, especially via social media. Larger companies don't even come close to feeling as personal and approachable.

I am pumped to be a part of the Brooks team and I look forward to bringing my loyal readers (hi, Lisa) more product reviews and other fun stuff. This is gonna be rad.

Also on the awesomeness front, Tacoma Runners is having its second (week) anniversary run tomorrow night. We leave from the mighty Red Hot on 6th Avenue, at 6:30pm. Check the Facebook group for more details, yo.

The club is turning out to be kind of a fun endeavor. It's a great group, and we somehow managed to get through last week's inaugural run with no injuries and nobody (as far as I know) getting 86'ed from the Parkway. Heck, even caught wind and wrote a little story.

It'll be interesting to see where this goes. Lisa and I are thinking about races, themed runs, and other ways to grow the group and keep it fun. Alleycat race with tequila checkpoints, anyone?