Thursday, September 13, 2007

Running, Recording, and Recollections

TS inspired my recollection which follows with his with the picture of his running logs. (Thanks for bringing back the memories.)

My Dad was a runner. He used to work for the Department of the Navy at the old Boston Naval Shipyard. They had a track, so he would run during his lunch hour. Later they moved the office and he had no track and wouldn't run the streets of Boston. But the top floor of the office building was like a warehouse and he ran there during his lunch hour.

At dinner every night he would usually comment on how many miles he had run that day (usually between 2 and 4). Sometimes (in the Naval Shipyard days) he would tell tales of younger men (usually Navy or Marine officers) informally trying to beat him around the track. (He wasn't a world class runner, but for a man his age-in his 50's at the time, he was pretty fast at distance, and I'm sure those young officers thought they could easily beat the "old man" in sneackers and black socks.)

When we had the Blizzard of '78 and he couldn't go to work for 2-3 weeks, he paced off a mile from our living room down the hall past the bedrooms, and started running up and down for 2-3 miles several times a week so he wouldn't get out of shape. (I think something like 30-40 "laps" made the mile.) And he would run this in his regular clothes with keys and change jangling.

Anyway, to the point: Dad had one of those refillable desk calendars where you flip the pages-one side of a page per date. Along with the calls he made everyday at the office, he would record his miles run. At the end of the year he would total the miles and recorded on the first page of the calendar. Then he would put a rubber band around the stack of paper and bring it home.

After Dad died my Mom gave me a large box of all his office calendars, all stacked and held together with rubber bands-each with his yearly mileage on the top page-some 30 or 40 years of them. (He had been retired and stopped recording in this fashion some years before-but I am sure he recorded his mileage somewhere, even if it was diminishing).

What was I to do with all this? I paged through a few years-saw where he noted that I or a sibling was due to be picked up from the airport-coming home from college, etc. What a collection.

May his soul rest in peace!

Oremus pro invicem!

1 comment:

TS said...

He was very dedicated! Hope I'm running when I'm 50.