Feb 5, 2010
I’m never going to be asked to give a speech in front of a crowd of fellow runners. It’s not going to happen; and by saying that I’m not implying that the absent request is a travesty; there’s a good reason why I’ll never be asked: because while you and I are friends and there are at least ten of you listening right now: generally speaking I am not what you call: popular.
I’m not very well known, and never expect to be burdened with fame…not enough at least to be asked to speak to a crowd of runners at the 2010 John Hancock Sports and Fitness Expo - Runners Seminar.
To be honest, that’s probably a good thing. I think you know that I tend to be a bit of a rogue; you never know when I’m going to go off on a goofy comedy riff or a screaming anger-thon…quite honestly, when I clip on this microphone I’m not even sure what’s going to happen…so, it’s probably in John Hancock’s best interest to suppress my speech at this and every Boston Marathon expo.
As I was thinking about this, while out on a long run (where my best thoughts are formed) I asked myself what I would do if I got the call to speak? What if the event organizers called me up tomorrow and asked me to present the key note address at the Boston Marathon Health and Fitness Expo; one of the largest gatherings of runners in the world?
Well, obviously the first thing I’d do is panic, then resolve to respectfully refuse: but opportunity is not a lengthy visitor, so as adverse as I am to speaking in public or standing in the spotlight of attention: I know that I’d have to somehow suck it up; and take to that podium and speak.
I wouldn’t enjoy the experience; I would dread the days and hours prior to my presentation: but despite all that I know that I’d accept the invitation, because like it or not: I do have something to say.
What I’d have to say to a large gathering of fellow runners would require a number of speeches. This being the 225th episode of Phedippidations, I’ve venture to guess that I’d have at least 225 themes that I’d want to cover…but if I only had time for one topic; one keynote message to transmit from my mouth to the ears of an audience of runners it would be what you’re about to hear.
So imagine, if you will, that it’s 2:00 in the afternoon on Sunday, April 18th 2010; the day before the 114th running of the Boston Marathon. You’re sitting in a packed room at the Hynes Convention Center on Boylston Street in Boston, just a quarter mile up the road from the finish line of the Boston Marathon.
You’ve been walking around town and the expo floor for the past three days, and you’re just about ready to head back to your hotel to rest up for the night in preparation for the big race. You’re tired, a little anxious and your patience is getting a little frayed when someone familiar steps up to the podium….
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