Connected with an old friend and mentor last night. So much to catch up on since I left WECRAWL (West End Closet Runner and Walker’s League) in 2001. Southeast Texas premiere club for those that prefer to remain anonymous. I was shocked to find he still rode herd. Bill Shaw, former Marine, a decade older than me, real bad ass with a silky pen, over 1000 columns for the Brazosport Facts. We talked into the night about the changing nature of running and racing.
Here was my Big Take, friendship allows for my opinion.
TIME TO STEP DOWN!
I related my own experiences of 11 years with Team Nebraska. How things should and do change. How I felt presumptuous and entitled to speak for an athletic generation. And how I had missed some very important shifts (primarily the strength and vitriol of social media) until it was too late.
I told Bill about the Long Distance Running program in Nebraska, mirroring his tenure with WECRAWL. How things, by nature, have changed from the Original Vision, How that is the Way Of The World. Hearkening back to yesterday’s column, the running world has transformed in ways Bill and I could never imagine. Generational Shifts unpredictable and unstoppable as time itself. You either compromise and get on board or you stick to your ideals (if you had them to begin with).
Bill assured me that none of this was relevant to WECRAWL. Everything is fine and easy and everyone agrees with everything.
I beg to differ. Again, this is my friend and he allows that. I insisted that his brain has been narcotized, necrosis by narcissism. To assume that after all these years he still speaks for or represents a generation 40-50 years removed from his own.
I harbor no such notions. I realize that I am different than 99.99% of the running population. That difference, expressed in the living colors of Real Competition, speaking to the slimmest margins of our sport.
My ego has settled into reality, I hope Bill’s does soon.