I was thinking about this while driving in this morning (I just saw that Colbert said something similar last night, but not exactly, so I’ll say it now).
I am a runner, and I am constantly injuring myself just because I love the joy and freedom of sport. But, no matter how much training I have done, or how many injuries I have suffered, I always get back up, buy a new pair of shoes and keep going. But, this post isn’t about me, this is just the preamble. You see, someone tried to murder runners, their fans, and families this last Monday at the premier running event in the world. That was a HUGE mistake. Of course it has made me sick all week to hear the stories of loss, but also rejuvenated to hear the stores of heroes.
Now to the real points, directed at the person or persons responsible for this crime. Here are 3 things you probably don’t understand and will never understand.
1. Marathoner Runners do it for the love of the sport. These are people who run 19-21 miles as their last long run 2 weeks BEFORE a marathon. There are no crowds, no cheering sections, no tables filled with drinks and post race food. There is just them (and if they are lucky a partner) and the road. There is no medal for training for a race, or training in general, they do it because they love it. They are unshakable in that love of the freedom and personal accomplishment. If they are really good and really lucky they might qualify for the Boston Marathon. That’s an important point. leading to the next one.
2. Every runner in the Boston Marathon was an elite runner in his or her age group and had to win a lottery just to get in. These are not people who will be shaken by adversity. Most of them have 10 black toes, no toe nails, with legs, ankles, knees, quads, taped up and sometimes just held together with the minimum of original tissue – just so they can run 26 miles repeatedly.
3. Bostonians, probably the toughest group of citizens on the planet (save Philadelphia and New York) came out in droves to watch others run this grueling race, and they will continue to do so.
So my point is, while you tragically maimed and killed over 100 people you will never ever shake these groups of people. They are all heroes and all winners because what they do is out of pure love. What you did was out of pure hate. We all know how that story ends. So I’ll end mine right here…