I love to run at night. I love the darkness, the quiet, the peace I feel when all I can hear are my feet hitting the pavement and breath following in syncopated rhythm. Plus, my face gets so damn red when I run that it would certainly scare the hell out of anyone during the day. So it works on multiple levels.

Until I come across one of the many dog walkers in my neighborhood. Don’t get me wrong – I heart dogs. It’s their sometimes idiot owners I can’t stand. I can’t tell you how many times I have been jumped upon, forced into the grass or tripped up by a leash because these jackasses either don’t get their dogs out of the way or they just let them attack total strangers. Whatever happened to common courtesy? It’s not like I’m running on their lawns. I’m on the sidewalk – public property. It belongs to everyone. Didn’t your momma ever teach you how to share?

It’s amazing how they can’t be bothered to move just a foot or two to the side. And believe me, they know I’m coming. Not only am I relatively tall, but also usually heaving like a mofo while pounding the pavement. I’ve a long way to go before I can boast Prefontaine skills. I’ve battled these people one too many times, though, so now I’m fighting back. My secret weapon? I have no fear of dogs. (Exceptionally stupid or supremely brave?) Therefore, I have recently begun to play a little game we all know and love called Chicken with my inconsiderate neighbors. When I see a dog walker ahead of me, it’s on. Fair warning, folks – if you don’t move Fifi, I just may be popping her with my foot as I go past.

And that’s exactly what happened the other night. I was running along and noticed this woman with her Pomeranian coming the other way. Like the well-mannered person I am (this story doesn’t exactly back me up, but oh well), I moved to my right of the sidewalk to give her room. I then noticed her failure to move to her right. So that’s how it’s gonna be, huh? You just called down the thunder.

Sure enough, little Fifi veered my way and – oops! As she tried to jump up on me, my knee gave her a nice uppercut to the chin. Sure, it messed up my rhythm for a moment or two, but it was so worth it. For her part, the woman seemed absolutely oblivious to the entire incident. Whatever. I know who won the battle that day… and her name is Anna.

Image: Salvatore Vuono / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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2 Responses to “Road Blocks”

Where are you from? Is it a secret? 🙂
Thank you

November 26th, 2009

I think the title of my blog might give you the answer that you seek. 🙂

December 1st, 2009