Sunday, May 15, 2005

Bay To Breakers - 2005

We've run quite a few road races. It's typically a pretty standard scene. You line up with other runners suited up in running shorts and t-shirts (occasionally a few wacky tights make an appearance), and you run. Along the way, you get some half-hearted encouragement by a few spectators. Sometimes, maybe even a band will belt out some tunes for inspiration. At the end of the course, you stop your watch, pat yourself on the back and move on to the next race.

Well, today, we participated in the Bay To Breakers 12K in San Francisco. This was nothing like any other race, circus, freak show, or rave that I've ever witnessed. First of all, it was huge. They estimate that there are usually 70,000 to 80,000 runners, making it one of the largest races in the world. This is what the starting area looked like. It took us thirty minutes to make it from this point to the starting line:

I'm not sure what's behind this tradition, but the spectators throw tortillas at the start of the race:

The next thing that's unusual about this race is that running attire is anything but typical. There are people suited up in just about every imaginable costume:

There are people suited up in nothing but body glitter and quite a few who don't even bother with the glitter.

To give you a sense of the sights, sounds and smells is impossible. There are no words. This is truly an event that could only be legal in San Francisco and should be experienced by everyone at least once (probably only once).

Oh yeah, did I mention that we pushed Sarah along the entire course and let her witness the debauchery? We're probably most certainly out of the running for Parent of The Year now. Oh, well. Here she is at the end of the race after she'd changed out of her rabbit costume (I'm not kidding about the costume).


At 7:18 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh, that poor child. Please
limit her exposer to the "censored"
stuff of the world. Perhaps
relocation to a more modest
community would be of some benefit
to raising a child. I will try
anything to get you out here.
Thanks for sharing the Bay to Breakers experience. Its best to
get it from a reliable source.
REJ Coffee calls......

At 3:41 PM, Blogger J Fife said...

Yeah, poor Sarita. We'll try to take it a bit easier on her. On second thought, why don't you come out here and run this with us next year? I'd be willing to deal with the crowds again if you visited.


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