Saturday, May 7, 2011

Of course mermaids can run

Until some other guy brought it up, it had never occurred to me how funny it would be to ask women in the East Bay Mermaid Run how it was possible for mermaids to run, given that, well, except for a bit of time in a Disney movie, they don't have legs. As it turns out, it gets old really fast (a veteran Mermaid Run friend says she gets asked that almost every time she wears the race shirt).

So I'm not going to go there. (And trust me, that isn't easy.)

Today was the East Bay Mermaid Run out at Quarry Lakes - the same place where the Brazen Western Pacific race was held a few weeks ago. I had wondered if it was possible for men to sign up for the race (that same Disney movie had mermen after all), but it turns out you would have to lie - when they ask you for your sex, there is only one answer. So grandkid Riley and I provided support to Mrs Notthat, Weird Haired Mom, and Darci, who all participated in the event.

We were able to pick up the shirts, goody bags, and bibs on Friday. Mrs Notthat and WHM put theirs on as soon as we got home. What you can't see is that the shirts have a hood in the back - they are really very nice shirts.

Naturally, I will start race day with a bathroom picture. Sorry.

Mrs Notthat and WHM signed up for the 10K race. Darci and her friend Salma (in green - you'll be seeing more of this gazelle later) signed up for the Mini-Mermaid 1.5 mile race. We ran into Mr and Mrs Brazen and their two kids (Mrs Brazen did the Half Marathon).

After a bit of a delay (there's a large parking lot but there is also a large line that forms so you can pay your $5 to park), the 10K race started. As you can see by looking at Mrs Notthat, the weather was no longer sleeveless, and in fact, was a bit cool most of the time, even to me.

Once the 10K race started, we had some time to kill to wait for the Mini-Mermaid race to start, so we wandered over to the lake. Darci picked out the perfect picnic table for us. (This lake is much fuller than normal, and there were lots of partially-submerged trees and shrubs. And picnic tables.)

Salma and Darci still killing time, watching some of the 5K runners finishing. One question was whether the Mini-Mermaid race would start before Mrs Notthat or WHM finished their 10K. After last weekend, I refused to offer an opinion.

Which was a good thing since Mrs Notthat did indeed finish her race before the kids started theirs. (Mrs set a new PR by over 18 minutes! And she has the blisters to prove it!)

Finally the Mini-Mermaid race started. Darci started out strong but faded a bit later.

Salma started out strong, would pause to let Darci catch up, then take off again. I told her to not worry about us and to finish as fast as she wanted, and she was gone. She's a really good runner.

Darci ened up finishing with a friend she made on the last part of the course. Darci's official time (using precise Notthat timing methods) was 32:57. I have no idea about Salma's time, but it was much quicker.

I turn my back for a second and here comes WHM and a policeman walking away from Riley. This can't be good, but at least he's not in handcuffs. My guess was that either he wouldn't leave the fishermen alone or he wouldn't stop making train noises. (It turned out that someone thought he was lost. WHM and the others were in a very slow moving pancake line, and "slow moving" and "Riley" never belong in the same sentence.)

Finally the chocolate chip pancakes! And some token fruit.

Mrs Notthat and I opted for In-N-Out burgers. Mrs, who swears she has never eaten there before, walked up to the counter and ordered animal-style fries (which are not on the menu). She claims she heard about this from The Boy. (They were very tasty, however.)

The bib and the necklace all runners got (including the kids). The front says "Mermaid Athlete" and the back says "Finish Strong."

It was a great day, outside of both Mrs and WHM ending up with foot blisters.

And Riley nearly getting a police record.

That's it - move along...

PS: You can see a lot more pictures from the day here.

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