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Where Angela runs around these here parts while listening to her husband’s playlist

by John on July 16th, 2012
I am on vacation — and as a series of quasi-coherent posts about how wonderful my family is, and how beautiful the beach is, and how drunk I might be at a time that would normally be a completely inappropriate time for me to be drunk might not go over all that well, I have asked a collection of my favorite bloggers to stop by and share something.

Posting today is Angela of Tread Softly (formerly Tiaras & Trucks). Angela is a colleague of mine who runs. A lot. I’ve been in a funk lately, not being able to find time to get my runs in — yet Angela is still out there most every day. She’s and inspiring blond notorious neighborhood panty-flasher who I’m very, very happy to have here today.

Running with music is paramount to my ability to make it through my runs some days. On a treadmill I often find myself depending on both music and the close-captioned debate of an open floor plan versus a level backyard on HGTV’s House Hunters. Even in the open air, music is a pounding backdrop for my racing thoughts and slapping feet.

So when my Shuffle ran out of juice the other day, I deftly plucked my husband’s from his desk; I didn’t need to check to know his battery life was safely full – unlike me he keeps track of things like that.

I powered on the tiny music player, uncertain as to how my rhythm would be affected by an unknown playlist. Though my own selections are silly and eclectic each song is specifically chosen and familiar. My feet know how to move to Elvis Presley; my lungs know how to breathe when they hear The Black Eyed Peas.

Tentatively, I began to run, letting the unfamiliar songs seep into my consciousness. Of course there were similarities: Beat It, the first song on which I really understood the idea of a bass line; some White Stripes with their brief, frantic energy; Lady Gaga, whose insidious hooks captured even a reluctant fan. But unexpected notes arose again and again, and I played a game with myself as I ran, listening to each song instead of clicking through to find something that fit my usual routine. Beastie Boys from years and years ago; Eminem in his most angry staccato; The Rolling Stones in all of their phases.

As I listened, my mind drifted.

Our running paces are similar but not the same; the goals we have for our family, our lives, our future are more closely aligned. Shared laughter and dreams wrap us together on our couch at night as the kids sleep; we watch movies, plan vacations, debate future house projects. But like the different threads that run through our song choices, the scenery along our shared path varies. Disney cruises compete with Grand Canyon road trips; renovating the kitchen jostles against making repairs on our garage.

This fall, we’ll run in the same half-marathon. We’ll awaken, leave the warmth of our bed, fasten our bib numbers, and stretch together while we wait for our wave to begin. Then we’ll turn on our music, touch fingertips briefly, and settle into our own paces. The music in our ears will be different as we glide through some miles and struggle through others because even people in love can carve out slightly different races to the same finish line.

  1. I love the last line. Isn’t that how life and life are.
    Beautiful post. Good luck on your marathon!

    • Thank you so much 🙂 I have another few months to train. A few much needed months 😉

      • I’m convinced that, for every event, I’ll always want another month.

        I dreamt, last night, of a fictional WoE conference (though I’m not sure it’s really all that fictional — if only it didn’t cost money, or take time to schedule). Anyway, I was thinking of a run that we’d have to do, because we have you, and me, and Cheryl, and Nancy, and Cam, and a run ust kind of seems natural. Anyway, I dreamt of a 26 mile run — not a 26.2 marathon, but a 26 mile run, so that, even at the end, we could consider it a work in progress.

        Then I woke up and felt all nerdy like.

    • ’twas a great post, wasn’t it?

  2. Cameron permalink

    I was giggling so hard over you referring to our Ang as a notorious neighborhood panty-flasher that I had to stop lest I miss all the beauty of her post.

    As always Ang, this life made tangible and good and lovely.

    • Thank you for your kind comment. I’ll flash my panties for you anytime 🙂 Dylan will see to that.

    • I wrote the intro as soon as Angela said “yes,” and then felt a little guilty actually posting the intro, but then, nay, it’s Angela 🙂

  3. I LOVE Angela. LOVE. This is another knock out of the park lovely post. She tends to do that.

  4. Thank you so much for having me over to hang out John! I promise to keep my skirt down while I’m a guest over here 🙂

    • Thank you, so much, for posting here, Angela 🙂

      But, surely, you must know that we don’t mind a panty flash or two ’round these parts 😉

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