Last night, Eric and I headed to Citi Field for the Mets/CUBS game. It was a fairly boring game overall, only made interesting by some poor base running. The most fascinating play of the game was a steal at third where the Cubs runner pulled his leg bag just before hitting the bag to avoid a tag. Strong work, Cubs. Now if only the third base coach would send the runners home, maybe it wouldn’t have taken 11 innings to score a run.
Gatsby hanging in his Cubs gear.
After running an early morning errand for a friend this morning, I headed out on a run of my own. I’m still feeling a bit tired from this past week – gotta snap out of that! But in the meantime I told myself to take it easy, to not be a slave to my watch, and to JUST RUN. Five miles. I had a bit of a dry mouth – most likely from having baseball beers (only two…) and not drinking enough water. Luckily, I was out the door around 9-ish and it wasn’t too hot quite yet. In an effort to maximize my proximity to the most number of water fountains, I walked down to the Hudson River Path and ran south along the river.
Within the first mile, a cyclist rode by a bit too close to me while saying, “Heyyyyyyyyyyyy” followed by staring back at me and waving. I don’t think this guy, but I’m pretty sure he’s done things like this before while I’ve run along the river. (Creepy? Am I overreacting?) I brush it off as kind of annoying and inappropriate and keep running. The path isn’t busy because it’s 9am on a Thursday – the highlight of not running when the masses are out. I hit the halfway point and turn around. At about 3.5 miles in (around 42nd St, for those keeping track), a cyclist is riding the opposite direction I’m running. Very loudly, he says, “Oh, how scenic. Runners in the bike lane!”
For those unfamiliar with the NYC path, it’s a typical pedestrian asphalt path – complete with the line down the middle to tell you what side you should be on for the direction you’re heading. (Some people still can’t figure this out, which is beyond me…there are pictures on the ground!) There are parts of the path where signs direct “joggers/pedestrians” to another path, but it often goes in and out of the bike path and sometimes runs you through traffic. Therefore, I, as well as many other runners, run on the “bike” path. This path is also for people on wheels, such as rollerblading, so it’s not solely a bike path.
Now, as someone who trained for a triathlon last year, I kind of got the cyclist’s side of the argument when it comes to traffic/paths/omg get-out-of-my-way-before-I-run-you-over. And yes, it is a path for people on wheels. But if it’s a slow weekday morning with plenty of room for everyone – even tourists on city bikes and some casual riders that I manage to run faster than they’re riding their bikes – can’t we just deal?
Can’t we all just get along?
Last year, a cyclist hit a woman crossing the street in Central Park, and she passed away. This is terrible and not something I’m looking to discuss right now (speed limits in the park, pedestrian crossings, stoplights, etc.), but it brought up a big cyclists vs runners vs people walking through the park discussion. To which I wanted to say then, “Can’t we all just get along?” Pay attention to each other, not assume we are the most important person ever and that we have the right of way.
Or that someone else is in “your space.” I get why cyclists get upset about runners/walkers/etc – people are unpredictable and not paying attention, leading them into your path quicker than you may be able to react. People don’t always look before they cross a path, and it can be scary when you’re clipped in, even if you’re not moving that fast. (Hi, my name is Susan, and I’m slow on the bike.) It’s annoying when I’m running and I can easily react! But if we all seem to be functioning in peace, do we need to be a pain about the fact that I’m running right on the white line, where you’re not going to ride your bike anyway?
Or maybe I’m wrong. A runner not in their place.
But why we can’t seem to coexist in peace just boggles my mind. People say they love how up front and forward New Yorkers are, but I’ve always held that there’s a difference between having no issue with stating your opinion and being rude. Fine line, my friends. (And stop the cat calling, geez.)
Am I overreacting? Did I catch people on a bad day? (This happens all the time, so probably not…) Any cyclists have their opinion to share? Is it like this in other cities, or are too many people sharing a small space in a crowded city? Tell me everything.
In other news, five mile flew by pretty quick with all these thoughts in my head:
Thursday, July 2 – 5 miles in 41:28, avg pace of 8:17. I’ll take it.