Monthly Archives: November 2016

SMALLS

But first, thanks to Tim Meyer for pointing out that Seth has run faster than 15:35 at Walnut Grove, maybe even twice.  Tells you just how  special this lad is.  He has signed at Wisconsin and they’re lucky to get him.

Taking victories where I can get them.  When I can get them.  The Rogue with the rouge on the shiners.

I made the announcement prior to the start of Sundays XC champs that our first USATF Nebraska Association 5K XC Championships were held at Lake Zorinsky and the original  Swamp Stomp in 2004.  One person on the line remembered, thanks Cory.

Our USATF Nebraska Association’s website has an LDR Championships Results archive.  As author and architect of the program I’ve hosted close to or over 20 such championship races.  And there were Real Runners with Real USATF memberships that raced Real Championships.   Setting Real Association Records.  Between the years 2004 and 2012.  Our archives reflect the Blair Mile and Lincoln Marathon in 2010, nothing for 2011, and nothing at all prior to 2010.  Dozens of championship races omitted.  Like the program didn’t exist before The Exodus.  I’ve sent in my list once and I’ll send it in again.  No revisionist history allowed!

http://nebraskausatf.org/main/?page_id=50

Small victory, also 15 years in the making.  When I set up Team Nebraska I religiously sent in race results to both our association website and to the Omaha World Herald, and to the Journal Star as well.   Our then association webmaster flat refused to publish any LDR information because it only consisted of Team  Nebraska, folks, that’s all there was back then.  I raised hell when I found out he was receiving a $750/year stipend for his lack of service.  The OWH had their own obstacle to my brand of promotion.  Insisting results be submitted with the athletes hometown only.  No club affiliation allowed, no recognition for USATF.  So when I opened yesterday’s sports page and saw the results exactly as submitted (club not hometown) I was happy.

Its the little things.

DISAMBIGUATION

Hat Trick.  Troika.  Triumvirate.

Such an interesting weekend.  Beer and Bagel dominated with thousands taking part in the fall classic.  Mass participation fun like few other Nebraska events.  Grown so large now that it takes Saturday (half marathon) and Sunday (4 mile).

But today’s focus is on a much smaller, more competitive cadre.  Those 13 people that showed up to race our Nebraska Association XC Champs.  No costumes, no mid air poses, no fanny packs, no headphones, no rock stars, no supa stars, no woots, toots, or butt scoots.  No hand holding, no feel good stories, no novelties, no bucket list, only competition not to we missed.

Our state has spoken in a whisper but the heart beat is still there.  Barely yes, but maybe stronger than ever.  Nebraska Run Guru Elite (2 men and 3 women), Team Nebraska (3 men), Lincoln Running Co. Racing (3 men), Club 420 (1 fella).  Four USATF member clubs represented.  All the best male athletes in our association, with only an exception or two I allow because of injury or the Good Life Halfsy 7 days prior.

Our NRGE women, uncontested.   Not a single female athlete outside of my club showed.    Why?  Where were they?  I’m not asking them, I’m asking you to ask them, asking you to ask yourself.  Where were they?

Ruben Carter, our USATF Association President made the race, got a first hand view of how LDR is  supposed to roll it out (build out, timing, and results provided by my event management company).  He was so impressed that the request was made to use it for the Junior Olympics meet held later yesterday afternoon.  I gladly complied, any thing we can do for our youth after all.  He also took time to attend our LDR meeting post race.  Put in his highly valued two cents, decrying the vast LDR chasm called the Platte River.  Why won’t people  from Lincoln come to Omaha to race?  Several theories abound but a lot of  it has to do with the leadership on both sides of the river.  Omaha heads west for races, Lincoln rarely if ever heads east.  Think about it.  Why?  Why not?

Disambiguation.  Resolving conflicts based on articles of the  same name or title.

Nebraska Run Guru Elite, Inc.  Our USATF Club.
Nebraska Run Guru Events, LLC.  My Event management company.
Bar None Produce.  Our Best Organic  Practices gardening operation.

The race was set up by NRGE, LLC.  The individual  races were won by NRGE, Inc.  The prizes and medals were sponsored by Bar None Produce.  I offered at the LDR meeting that this alone kept some athletes and admins away.  Sorry that they missed the  most competitive off road race of the year.

Grant took the measure of the field in 15:35, I’m going so far as saying the venerable course has never seen a faster 5K.  I can’t imagine a high school or youth athlete running faster than this national class athlete we boast as our #1.

RENE ORDUNA

Today I celebrate the life and passing of a friend.  To me and to many, many more.  Rene Orduna, co-owner of Dixie Quicks has slipped the surly bonds and is now whupping up some Tex-Cajun-American cuisine for a more heavenly host.

I’ve known Rene for many years, pitching a 5K over in Council Bluffs, thanks to our buddies Agustin & Dan.   Not an overstatement at all to say one of the nicest guys I’ve ever met.  Model of decency.  Great chef.  Pioneer in sourcing local produce for his kitchen.  Years ahead of his time.

The RNG Art Gallery is adjacent to and part of Dixie Quicks.  A couple years ago Linda and I had stopped in for  a bite before the grand opening of the Freddie Rincon exhibit.  I noticed collard greens on the menu, unappreciated southern super food.  Asked our waiter to let Rene know I was growing a nice size plot.  Met the next Monday and we’ve been sourcing fresh collards, eggplant, peppers, leeks and more for them since.

You lived well Rene, your recipes will remain tribute to culinary mastery.  Your easy smile and sparkling eyes will be sorely missed.  Adios my friend.

VOICE OF REASON

Most often comes from those with a wealth of life experience.  The more trips around the sun, the more sense, at least its supposed to work that way.

Life is a dichotomy that way.  The broader your horizons, the closer to the middle path you tread.  Unfazed by developments of days or even years.  Even keeled.

For all the hoopla and unrest and teeth gnashing and beard tearing and hand wringing I offer you this:

The sun will rise my friend
And then will set again
And then will rise again
And set again
And rise again
There is no end
The Middle Way
Day to Day
The Middle Way
Day to Day

 

 

THROWING IT DOWN

throwing-down-the-gauntlet

Our USATF Nebraska Association Club XC Champs are this Sunday.  Walnut Grove park, across from Millard South, 10:30 start time.   NRGE, Team Nebraska, LRC Racing, Women Run Nebraska.

Bragging Rights.  Prize money.  $tipend from the USATF National  Office.

Three good runners is what you’ll need.

Cautionary tale:  Twelve years ago Mike Morgan and Nick Rector needed a third to score at the USA Half Marathon Club Champs.  I had brought my flats on a lark.  We won.  This weekend Grant and Drew may need a third to score.  I’m bringing my spikes.

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I FEEL SO DIRTY

Thanks Donald and Hillary.  This sh*t show of a campaign has left a fecal smudge on America, stained and stinky.  You’ve fouled the democratic process.  You’ve turned off the electorate.  You’ve stoked the lowest common denominator to a frenzy.  You’ve lied, cursed, hidden, refused, covered, and distracted.  You’ve set the worst possible example for our youth.

Get out and cast your vote.  Do your duty.  Ha-ha, I said  doody.    The American people deserve better than either one of these turds.

I think I’ll go stand under a nice hot shower.

 

 

I’M STIMULATED

And I hope you are too!  Headline banner, ushering a new era drip wise, briefly satisfied this weekend, fueling what keeps me running/writing.

Let me break it down for you.

Al and Luka battled at the Good Life Halfsy.   Sanabria’s 1:07:32 besting Thor’s 1:07:35 for the best road race of 2016.  Best being defined as most competitive.    Johnny Rutford’s 1:08:02 taking the measure of Zach Baker (Iowa RunAblaze) at 1:08:13.  Some fine times and top 3 fellas from Nebraska.  Gerardo Hernandez of the KC Smoke (12th, 1:12:50), this is almost exactly what I was pimping to Ben and Cal for the Midwest Champions Series.  Now let’s grow it for 2017.

NE16010GM.    Is there a Real Runner left in Nebraska that doesn’t understand and accept the importance of USATF Course Certification?  That battle now over thank The Buddha.  Gary Meyer of Omaha our new Midwest Regional Certifier.

Sunday’s course was new from 14 & 15.  And improved.  As reflected in the times.  Some very impressive course records now taking shape.  The 33.16% degree of separation between the  start and finish makes it ineligible for USATF Nebraska Association records purposes but matters not elsewise.  All about downhill courses and much too technical for today’s column.

Obsie Birru of Iowa RunAblaze (1:15:23) improved by  almost 5:00 over last year’s 2nd place (1:20:17) for the win on the women’s side.  That’s a new CR for the women.  Iowa, Iowa, Colorado and Minnesota all represented at the finish line before our first Nebraskan, Michelle Paxton (1:24:50).  Christy Nielsen (41) set the new standard for 40+ women in 1:25:28.

Ivan Ivanov has a hat trick of GLH titles, 1:11 in ’14, 1:12 in ’15 and 1:14:04 yesterday, fast fast fast forty six year old.

Molly & Abdi both on the podium at NYC, solid thirds against international fields.  All in all a good weekend!

 

 

 

POTPOURRI FRIDAY

Briefly touching on yesterday.  Hard for 99% of you to understand the depth of my Cub reverie.  Those of you having grown up with every imaginable distraction.  I’ll tell you about a different time.  The 60s.  Before social media.  Before the internet.  Only 3 tv channels, all black and white.  How in the world did lower middle class boys from Central Illinois wile away the hours?  In the spring/summer it was wiffle ball.  In the fall/winter it was two hand touch below the waist football.  Our heroes inspiring us via grainy 12″ images, their feats now enshrined in halls of fame, our mimics in our memories.  Undiluted by the current and constant bombardment of extraneous information.

Daintiest moniker for a race?  All flowery and frilly and lacey and cutesy?  Images of rainbow bright and marshmallow stars?  Good Life Halfsy!

Allow me this.  My running heroes were forged in the 60s and 70s and 80s.  In the mold of Bill Rodgers, Frank Shorter, Billy Mills, Gerry Lindgren, Steve Prefontaine.  Undiluted by the current and constant dumbing down of Real Racing.  More importance now placed on revenue and costumes and participation than Real Racing.  I swear our sport did not start out this way, it really didn’t.

Having said all that.  Look for some runners from out of state (Iowa Run Ablaze) and at least one C level Kenyan to make the race.  Best Nebraskans will be 1:09:16 for the men and 1:21:02 for  the  women.  Hopefully good enough for top five on both  sides.

Looks to be a perfect morning.  Good luck to y’allsie!

 

CUBS 2016 WORLD SERIES CHAMPIONS!

I don’t remember ever typing a sweeter column title.

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I purchased this poster off the wall of a dive bar in Hammond, IL thirty two years ago.  Brought it out for games 5-6-7.  Treasure.  Notice no lights around Wrigley.  The most astute of you will notice the artist omitted a first baseman.

Playing wiffle ball as a boy.  Ernie Banks, Billy Williams, Ferguson Jenkins, Ron Santo.  I swung for the fences with images of Game 7, bottom of the 9th.

Waking up this morning to find its not a dream.  My Cubs.  2016  World Series Champions!