Wednesday, November 16, 2011

I Loved My Body Just A Minute Ago

My how times have changed by peppergrasss
My how times have changed, a photo by peppergrasss on Flickr.
This morning while I was walking my dog, I noticed a female runner coming down the street toward us. She was about 30 years old, and one of those stick-thin runners. I am one of those curvy, athletic-build runners. This will be important later in the story.

I noticed her for a few reasons. One, it was early--still dark--and my neighborhood isn't the safest place for ladies to run alone during off-peak hours. Two, it was cold and I hate running in the cold, so I was impressed by her indefatigable enthusiasm for our shared sport. Three, I've been too sick to run for two weeks and I'm finally feeling better, so I got a little excited when I saw her (not *that* kind of excited), because I thought about running tonight myself, since I am feeling much better.

So, I'm standing there while my dog pees, thinking about where I'll run tonight, when she whizzes past us and sneers in a bitchy Mean Girls voice, "How many marathons could *YOU* run?".


She couldn't have been addressing me. Surely she was addressing my dog--he's a little thick and he gets tired after about two miles. Yes, that's it! No, that's not it! She wasn't talking to my dog, that's just silly. She was talking to me. Ouch. And what the fuck? And why? Why would a complete stranger feel compelled to say something that would send me on a vicious warpath toward my own body? This is the last thing I need at 6:00 on a Wednesday morning...or EVER.

I began to justify my existence as a runner (and a worthwhile human being). I thought about how girls with a little meat on them fare better at endurance sports than the skin-and-bones girls do (it's true--especially ultramarathons).

I started looking at my reflection in the windows of every doorway I passed. Did I look super fat today? Maybe this puffy jacket I just bought was doing bad things for my silhouette. Or maybe this nasty wisp of a girl can go fuck herself. Yeah. That's it. She can go fuck herself. Whatever, man...

As I walked back to my apartment, I tried to shrug the experience off and I realized I was more upset at myself for letting her get to me than I was at her for trying. Then I did this fun little thing I do when someone is a jerk to me--I whipped out Hanlon's Razor:

Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

So I decided that the girl just didn't know. Whether I'm right or wrong, I'll never find out and my world is much happier when I think she was just stupid. So, nice girl that I am, I silently answered her question: Two. I've completed two marathons so far and I'm going to keep running them until I lose count.


Johnny Photo said...

Why not 2 and a half? I think the half is perfectly valid and should count.

Next time you see her, ask her how many medical classes she has assisted in during instruction on the skeletal system. Either that or if she works with the symphony as a xylophone. Not the player, but the instrument.

Meanwhile, you GO girl! Don't let anyone break your stride.

ShesAllWrite said...

You are right, I stand corrected--I've run 2 AND A HALF marathons! And a bunch of 5K's, 8K's and 10K's. :)

RayJ said...

ShesAllWrite - I love your blog, and life is just too short to let the twigs get under your beautiful and very awesome skin. Stupidity goes to the bone, and if somehow she tripped while jogging by...

Chrisa said...

Gee, project much? I think the skinny girl probably got pulled from the marathon because her 1% body fat bod lost the ability to regulate temperature on hotter days. Plus her hair is probably falling out and she hasn't had her period in a year.

Next time she runs by you in the wee hours, stick your foot out. Just a smidge.

PC said...

Chrisa! I love your response - you are so right on. Carla, what makes someone "perfect" is NOT their body type - it is made up of so much more! And, my dear friend, I think you are perfect.

PS. I betcha you look swesome today!

ShesAllWrite said...

Chrisa, Ray and PC, you guys are awesome. I've made a strange peace with this morning. Plus I just saw myself naked and I don't have a qualm in the world. Love you guys!

Bex said...

She probably found you as beautiful as we do. It was more likely projected self-loathing, the kind that has stick thin women running in bad neighborhoods at 6am when it is below freezing. Don't hate her, pity her. And never take to heart the opinion of someone you don't respect.