Supersonic human free fall has been rescheduled for Sunday due to weather.
Navajo Nation will put drone tech to good use by using an unmanned aircraft to monitor crops.
Soprano to take a Virgin Galactic flight into space and siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiing.
A diamond planet bigger than Earth.
13 obscure punctuation symbols you might like to use, such as the authority point and the snark mark.
Lots of people are going to be sassy Big Bird for Halloween.
Advice from Miami stripper Skrawberry. (Warning: Kinda raw.)
America is not mostly Protestant anymore.
How to find truth on the Internet.
In today's so-obvious-maybe-it's-not-news news: NRA backs Heather Wilson.
And she's talking about driver's licenses some more.
Minority births are the majority in the U.S.
A semi truck carrying lighter fluid just combusted on I-40.
If you're wondering why there are throngs of people in Albuquerque on Sunday, it's the eclipse.
Will drones spy on us?
Council plans for a stripper database delayed.
Tape dress. Neat.
The world's oldest yoga teacher is 93. And she's a badass.
Republican Super Pac plotting extreme attack ads about President Obama.
Limbless man attempting to swim between five continents.
Coffee drinkers live longer, says my new favorite study.
Fake chicken meat-maker promises new nonflesh will be even better than the real thing.
Gale-force wind in yo face.
I should have realized from the start that any athletic event which requires a wake up time of 3:45am is probably not for me, being the non-morning person that I am. But somehow I managed to wake up, and with my teammates Deb and Ron, catch a 4:30am shuttle bus to Dodger Stadium, which was the starting point of the marathon. The three of us, along with 20 other members of Team Concern who had raised money for cancer research, were treated by CBS to a catered pre-race breakfast in a luxury suite at the stadium. Watching daybreak at Dodger Stadium was pretty awesome. Little did we know it would end up being the highlight of the day.
I knew even before I left Albuquerque that there was a 70% chance of rain predicted for race day. By Sunday, that chance had gone up to 100%, with chilly temperatures and gusty winds predicted as well. The weather conditions weren't ideal for a marathon,but we weren't too worried about it. After all, what's a little rain? We threw on extra layers of clothing (which we planned to throw off once we warmed up at mile 2 or 3), and plastic rain ponchos that Deb had purchased for us the previous day. The 99-cent hooded plastic ponchos were pretty fancy; many other runners opted for more casual outerwear and donned Hefty trash bags with a hole cut for their heads to keep them dry. Because of the rainy forecast, our small sub-team, "69000 steps 4 cancer" decided that we should run/walk the marathon, instead of just walking it, to speed things up. Having run 2 previous marathons myself, I knew full well that it takes a solid 6 months to train to RUN a marathon. OMG. I hadn't even trained to WALK in this marathon, much less run. I rationalized that walking's easy, right? Anyone can do it, can't they? Who needs training?
It started drizzling at about 7am, as the 20,000 runners participating in the marathon lined up at the start. No one even noticed at first, as our adrenaline made us oblivious to anything except hearing the the starting buzzer.
By that point we had adopted a new teammate, Sean, who was doing his first marathon. He liked our run/walk pace, and so joined us for the rest of the race. Sean was wearing only a t-shirt and shorts. With no other protective clothing, he was totally drenched from head to toe. His cellphone, which he had put in his pocket before the race, was waterlogged and non-functional. We stopped at a med station so he could get a mylar sheath, which is what they usually hand out to runners AFTER the race to prevent chills. However, due to the weather conditions, they were handing them out along the entire route. All of us got one and wrapped it around us tightly.
By mile 15, the rain was a torrential downpour that never let up for the rest of the day or night. By this time it was impossible to avoid stepping in the puddles that had formed below us, as the streets were becoming flooded. Who said it never rains in southern California,anyway?? The winds were gusting to over 25 or 30mph now. Our hands were so cold and swollen that we could barely get the wrappers off the energy bars we had packed. My always upbeat friend Deb started skipping, to break up the monotony of running and walking, and soon she had a whole group of marathoners skipping behind her. Ron refused to skip with us, stating that under no circumstances should heterosexual men ever skip. We cheerfully disagreed!
At mile 20, we decided we were no longer going to even attempt to run. It was walking only from here on in. Getting from mile 22 to 26 was the hardest part of the race. By this time it was so windy that the trees were blowing sideways and the rain was pelting in our faces. The mile markers seemed to be hundreds of miles apart. It was getting hard to remain upbeat. I had hit the "wall" again, but my hands were too numb to tear open another packet of "gu" and no one else around me could manage it either. The rain had melted Ron's stash of Advil.
The medical stations along the route were crowded, but not just with the normal marathon ailments like sprained ligaments, twisted ankles, and dehydration. Hypothermia was a real concern. It was hard to stay warm at that point no matter what you were wearing. Everyone was soaked through and through, and was chilled to the bone. My legs were so stiff that they felt more like 2' x 4's than human limbs.
Crossing the finish line at 26.2 miles was not as boisterously joyous as it normally is in marathons (we were too cold, tired, and wet to muster the energy for shouts, high fives, and jumping up and down) but it was quietly joyous nonetheless. We made it!!! Incredibly, there were still lots and lots of people behind us. Before attempting to walk the half mile to where our car was parked (a cruel joke, no?) we went into a coffee shop to get hot beverages to warm us up. My teammates started looking at me strangely, and asking me, "Are you okay?" "What day is it?" "Do you know where you are?" I was fine, but apparently because of my extremely blue lips, very pale skin, lack of usual chattiness, they thought I might have hypothermia. Nope. It was nothing that a vanilla latte couldn't cure!
OK, you've heard the bad stuff. Here's the good stuff. I feared that because of the weather forecast, the marathon volunteers manning the water and medical stations along the route wouldn't show up. I was also afraid that spectators, who cheer you on when you are feeling tired, wouldn't show up either. They all did. Perhaps not as many spectators as would have normally been there, but the real troopers, the ones with umbrellas and raincoats and signs that said "Go Dad!", were scattered along the route. Kindly onlookers provided us with banana slices, orange segments, candy, and even food from restaurants that were on the route. Bands, protected by tents, played music for us at the main mile markers. We laughed at signs like "You are at mile 5. The Kenyans just finished mile 15." The Concern Foundation had a booth at mile 17 with an incredible cheerleading squad. The marathon route itself was fun, as it went through every well known area of Los Angeles, including Chinatown, Little Tokyo, Hollywood, West Hollywood (where scantily clad men in drag danced for us on a stage!), Beverly Hills, Century City, Westwood, Brentwood, and Santa Monica. I wanted to take photos of every area, of the runners, of the spectators, of my teammates and I, and of course of crossing the finish line. Alas, it was too rainy for any of us to even get our cameras out. And our hands were too swollen and not functional enough to work a camera until much later.
The best part of participating in this event, of course, was raising a significant amount of money for cancer research. Thanks to my wonderful friends and family, I not only reached my marathon goal of raising $1,000 for the Concern Foundation for Cancer Research, but actually DOUBLED the original goal by raising over $2,000. Our small sub-team "69000 steps 4 cancer" raised over $8,000. In total, Team Concern raised over $80,000 in donations from participants in the LA Marathon. Thank you all so much for your donations! The blue lips were totally worth it.
That said, in the future I may look for a way to donate to charity that does not involve walking, running or skipping 26.2 miles.
300 acres alight in Cimarron.
Lance Armstrong is riding the Tour of the Gila, which began in Silver City.
Body found in a North Valley ditch on the street where I grew up.
Feds deploy an ad campaign to discourage meth use on reservations.
You can keep your job after 10 arrests if your dad is the Bernalillo County deputy manager for public safety.
Around New Mexico, groups prepare to protest Arizona's immigration law.
Obama's not sure Washington can pass immigration reform this year. He needs cooperation from Republicans, he says.
Massive oil spill off the coast of Louisiana is way worse than expected and could be washing up on shore by tomorrow.
Space balloon crashes in Australia.
The top psychiatric pharmies of the last decade.
Life is hard for conservatives in Hollywood.
Scared of mice? Call your lesbian friend.