Don Hosek - Marathon - 12 January 1998

For a long time I've been a two pair of shoes guy. A pair of black shiny shoes for when I'm wearing a suit or really nice slacks and a pair of casual shoes for everything else. I threw away my last pair of gym shoes several years ago when I discovered that the leather uppers had fossilized from sitting in the closet unused for as long as they had.

So it was off to the shoe store. I was sent on this mission to the Foot Locker, a store which appears to be only tangentially in the shoe business, despite the name.

I stood helplessly in the aisle, looking at the selection of shoes trying to figure out who buys these shoes. Most of the shoes had color schemes that would have made every disco from the 70s look subdued by comparison. They also had price tags that made me leap back in fear. Apparently this is a store patronized by wealthy people with poor taste.

Eventually a sales clerk discerned my fear and confusion and offered her assistance. We located a pair of running shoes that were not quite as garish as much of the selection, although the price was more than that for the rest of the clothes I was wearing put together. And Nike pays their workers in Asia how much to make these?

Shoes on feet, I made sure my health insurance was paid up and began my first weekly run. I narrowly escaped death twice as uncleared ice made the sidewalk especially treacherous and completed my run in 2m40s. If I were to actually run the marathon at this pace, I would complete it in 3h6m.

It's not going to happen. On arriving back home, I collapsed in a chair and wondered if my lungs would ever grow back.