Running Gave Me Cooties

Yesterday didn't get off to a great start. My workout schedule called for kettlebells, followed by a run, but when I woke up I was all stuffed up and I had a sinus headache from hell. I was also extremely sore due to kettlebells the day before, so I was a hurtin' unit. My workout partners were no help, as they were both tired and sore too, so we ended up just sitting around chatting for 45 minutes instead of working out. I eventually took some allergy meds and went back to bed for an extra 90 minutes of sleep.

When I awoke, I felt so much better that I decided I would run in the evening. In theory, I like running after the sun has gone down - it's cooler, the streets are less busy, and there are fewer people out and about to see my flabby bulk go jiggling by. I decided that this was a good idea even though I was also planning on playing cutthroat handball with the guys after work - like I said, I felt SO much better.

We played an absolutely brutal set of cutthroat, which I won solely through the vagueries of physics (the good Doktor got robbed by weird bounces repeatedly). After that, on a whim G-Fresh and I decided to drive to another town 45 minutes away for dinner. It was yummy, but by the time we got back home it was almost 10:30. Maybe it was the carbs talking (I had capelinni), but I decided it was still a good idea to go for a run. My plan was to let my food settle, and then go for about 35-40 minutes (about 3 miles). The infinitely wiser G-Fresh decided to go to bed.

I set out at about 11:30. At this point, I should mention a couple things. First, let me say it was as dark as the inside of a cow outside. Secondly, I have terrible night vision. I brought a flashlight with me, but I still spent much of the run stumbling on bad sidewalks and getting hit in the face by low tree limbs. Despite a few scares, I managed to make it to the park and start taking my usual laps around the pond there.

Not many of my running friends will run this course. They call it "Stink Lake" and refuse to go there. Luckily, I have a lousy sense of smell, and at this time of year I can't really smell much of anything, so I like going there to run; I get the path all to myself. It was lovely, until the beginning of lap two. I heard the hissing and spitting sound that accompanies the sprinklers starting up.

"No problem," I thought. "I'll just time them, and avoid getting wet." That plan was going really well until one came to life just as I was passing it. I took a full blast in the right side of the face - got some up my nose, and enough in my ear to stop my earbuds from working. The water smelled/tasted pretty nasty, but not the usual sprinkler kind of nasty - more like an untreated lake water kind of nasty.

It was then that it occurred to me that some of the parks in this town use nonpottable (i.e. untreated) water to keep the grass growing. We've been in a state of drought or near-drought the whole time I've lived in this town, so many of the public facilities and businesses with manicured lawns have a sign in front that says, "Watered with Runoff" or "Watered by Well Water" or something similar to make you feel better when you see the sprinklers running.

Perhaps it's better for the environment, but not so good for drinking. Or inhaling, which is what I did. I left the park and finished my run on the sidewalks of our neighborhood, certain that my body was now a nursery for a new generation of giardia lamblia or something worse. Upon returning home I took an extended, scalding hot shower, but it was to no avail. I am now convinced that I am contaminated.

I got a cootie shot in the 3rd grade. Marianne Stetler (the 4th grader who administered the painful shot, which consisted of drawing a circle on my bicep and them punching me really hard in it) assured me that it was good to ward off girl cooties, loser cooties, dummy cooties - all forms of cootie-kind, in fact - for life. Still, I just don't feel safe...

4 comments:

Flynn said...

Wait... you're shot was good for life?
Alexandria told me I had to get one of those every week for my entire grade school career... my arm is still tender...

Big Gay Jim said...

Flynn...all of you is tender. ;) Rev, Stink Lake = NARSTY. Not just nasty, but narsty.

Mayren said...

man - didn't the flock just go through a round of The plague?
Now Linus is going to start a new plague. You guys in Laramie really know how to party.

Anonymously Lost said...

Well I suppose I can break out the hazmat suit for you. Dang girl dont you know you trust one for one second and then you turn your back and the dang shot doesn't last like it is supposed to. ;P

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