Sometimes it’s all a waste,
Sometimes not,
The drive, the traffic
The memories,
The cold,
The dark mornings,
The same songs,
The same breakfasts,
The same coffee,

But I’ll be damned
If I let the routine
Creep into my life,
Stealing the hope
From any seismic activity or
Continental shifting
Be it prophesy or heresy
I’m living this life to get faster,
Kind of a Santino way
Except I plan on getting past the toll booth
And LIVING a long ass time.

Give me that coffee,
Give me those breakfasts,
Let me listen to those songs,
Wake up on the darkest of mornings,
Even when they’re cold,
So I can create new memories,
Beat the traffic, whether driving alone or on the smoothest road
Because none of it, not one bit
Is a waste.

There are many ways to Williamsburg,
I’ve never flown there,
It would probably be ugly
Going over DC, just as it is driving around,
But the Colonial Capital doesn’t have suitable airports,
Landing strips,
Acceptable fields,
Or hover pads to set down on.

Once there, however, the time is great.
Running in the woods,
Learning about my family,
Seeing my goat herding homie,
Barbecue and all those pines…
It’s great.

Still, I wonder,
What’s going on at the new governor’s haunts?
How cruel can old age be to alums and the face they put out there?
Would a genetic smash up of Don Johnson with Philip Michael Thomas
Create the perfect model of a dad with no chest chair,
His shirt unbuttoned to his ribs, a white man’s jeri curl,
And a shiny dinner jacket he bought in 1987 at the Casual Male?
Hey, good enough for a landing spot,
Faux fur or not,
Middle age can’t be covered up with a cosmetic counter’s worth of foundation,
But they played the part,
Like the homecoming parents, they were,
Smallish town royalty, bumpkins or wanna be’s.
Doesn’t much matter,

It’s all part of going home.

Tonight, a little prehab while
Sitting in bed, hot pad blazing
After a cold shower
Where the water seemed
Straight from a river,
All in an effort to keep the motor running,
My motor,
The one my friends ran to empty this morning
When the scruffy gazelle
Found his stride
Which was more fluid than my ego was bold.
I kept with him due to his generosity in the form of
A short walk break so I could catch my breath and
A breezy conversation with questions easily answered
Without too much diverting of air
From my decade older lungs.
It was awesome cruising in the dark,
Pushing through October’s June-like feel,
Sweat pouring, muscles aching
Time ticking away,
Yet, afterwards nothing hurt.
Maybe this prehab thing works, after all,
Some quiet time,
Some breathing,
Some cold,
Some heat,
Lots of sleep,
It’s all good and it better keep working
Because the clock is ticking and soon
My friends will be charging around the corners
Pushing that pace again
And my old arse, or is it big ego,
Can’t stand giving in.

The second day
Brought new adjustments,
The wheels spun freely,
Balance returned to the challenges,
The end became clear.

Squats were finished,
The miles nearly run,
Only one month to go
Before the laps would become wet,
The fingers would ache in the cold,
And the adjustments would have to pay off
If all the hours on the bike
Would somehow get ridden.

The end became clear,
It was over,
The marathon, done,
If not physically, mentally finished,
Run the damn thing already,
Get out before the sun is up,
Before the crowds, before privacy is lost,
That all important alone time,
The hours of running without music,
Solo, only a partner to the thoughts
Coming and going
Like a quiet meditation
On a bench or in bed.

Soon the future will become foggy,
The hours of training,
Oh, those hours of training,
For what, for the challenge?
To see what is possible?
No, to know capabilities,
To get to another end,
So more fog can get in the way,
So more fog can be passed through,

So it is.

That process that never lets me down,
Finding something new,
Renewing something old,
Shedding layers,
Finding someone different,
That is the way.

A bike, they say it’s never forgotten,
New are rollers,
Proving old dogs need new tricks,
Like losing the training wheels or
Avoiding running over people’s feet,
That is my way today.

“Happy Fridaaayyy.”

Eff you,
I don’t want your BS cheerfulness,
Please know that this day is like all others,

Not that there is anything wrong with you,
I just prefer to celebrate all of the days, not just Friday,
Because I know I’m on the long course
To a hot after-life vocation,
Which kind of excites me.

Not like balls in the butt for some,
Because I don’t care for that,
Nor do I care if others do,
To each his, her, or it’s own
As it is with your Friday cheer, as well.

You can be as perky as you want,
I’ll be as grumpy as I want,
We’ll pass in the way people do,
You superficially giving well-wishes through a faux expression
Of happiness that masks some insecurity on your part.

You see, I just left a ten-miler
Where my hands nearly froze off,
My friends nearly got run over, and
I witnessed a fifty-year-old woman wearing gray spandex
From a Buck Rogers episode.

The beauty is that none of that was negative,
Sure my hands hurt,
Sure my friends and I got scared,
Sure the space cadet pushed my ability to be polite due to her
Jane Fonda era exercise gear, but

I loved it all
The pain, the fear, and
The subtle laugh my friend, who is fast-tracking
Her way to the same cauldron of eternity gave me
At the sight of Apollo 13 coming down the runway.

There were also human snakes in fogged up glasses,
Excited discussions of triathlon anatomy,
Inappropriate references to all that is sacred,
Lip reading of profane verbiage, and
Still more amazement at the way people dress to exercise.

After leaving my friends,
Who are all normal of course,
I was regaled by the awesomely incorrect musings of ZZ Top
Who put the icing on the cake and had the word deranged ringing in my soul.
With that, I knew the best part of the day was over.

So take your cheeriness, the kind that is so Hallmark,
And know that I appreciate the effort,
But your parking lot kindness will never rise to the level
Of Billy Gibbons’s expression of jewelry and passion
Or to the greatness that was this loud and wildly entertaining Friday 10.

How much will ten be?
Different for different people,
Routes, times, paces, clothes,
All diff…
Coordinating, triangulating, measuring,
Those are only controls.
show up, run freely,
Mix it up or
Stay the same.
Group or alone,
It doesnt matter,
It’ll be different for us all
And it will still be a ten.