All Gods critters have their place in the choir,
Some sing low, some sing higher.
Some sing out loud on the telephone wire.
Some just clap their hands, or paws, or anything they’ve got, now!
This is my mantra and I repeat it over and over. It is my “little engine that could” and it keeps me traveling forward, first with my left foot, then my right. It helps move me. It’s not a lot, but it is enough.
It is a deceptively simple song called “A Place In The Choir”, written by Bill Staines in 1978. It starts with the chorus and has just five verses of four lines each. However, I only repeat the chorus, mostly because I can’t remember all the verses, but also because it’s too hard to think through the haze that stands between remembrance and self. My daughter, Lauren taught it to me when she was ten years old. She in turn heard it as a campfire song at Guide camp. I liked this quirky, innocent song, so I went looking for it. I found a guitar tab on the Internet and reformatted so that both my daughter and I could read it. It’s one of the many songs we perform for ourselves at home. We are a guitar and ukulele duo, accompanying an unlikely duet. One has a beautiful young voice and the other, an older, straining one.
What’s so memorable about running the perfect race? Sure you might set a personal best, but let’s face it, while you may have pulled off the best race of your life, it was pretty boring. You run at your aim pace or maybe a little better, you focus on your goal, focus on your form and execute. When the going gets tough you reach deep and keep going. You write the time on your bib or in your run journal and that’s it. Other than a celebratory meal or refreshment after, what’s to remember about that run? Nothing. It was boring, it went exactly as planned. Unless you are one of the front runners, your race was successful, but there is no gripping story to tell. The perfect race is a perfect bore.
Running buddy Mary (right) and her sister (left)
show off their hard earned jackets
Immediately after our first ancestor donned an animal skin for warmth, clothing has meant more to man than mere protection from the elements. Not only does clothing make the man, but what we wear also helps define whom that man is. It is a form of magic that the threads we weave grant us.
Some times clothing is a symbol of authority or power. It could be a statement of individuality or an indication of membership in a peer group. Clothing not only helps identify us, but it can be used to hide who we are. Clothing can be a shield or an expression of who we want the world to see us as. A $2000.00 business suit tells the world that you are a successful businessman, but it could also be hiding criminal intent.
Mark Collis had run the Ottawa Marathon. He let the marathon out that was within him which would qualify him to run the Boston Marathon.
Ozzie Gontang has shared his folklore on marathoning for twenty-five years. Ozzie Gontang has shared his folklore with rec.running (a news group on the Internet) for seven years.
Ozzie and Mark have never met in person but their friendship has grown over the past 3 or 4 years.
This is a dialogue they shared. Ozzie and Mark have never been to the Plains of Marathon but the voices of Marathon binds them mind/body/spirit.