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 What Would Joe Do?

Archive for April 16th, 2013

Boston: a personal reflection

Tuesday, April 16th, 2013

 

If you have ever run a marathon, or supported a friend or family member on the day of the race, you know what it is like at the finish line. All eyes are on that finish line — and the clock. The runners have reached the end of their physical limits and the people who are trying to see them finish are crushed together in a constantly shifting mass of onlookers, standing on tip-toes trying to see over the heads of the crowds to get a photo of their friend or family member at the very moment the runner passes through the gate. Nobody, absolutely nobody, is looking for danger.

Then, in the moments after the finish, several things happen. The runner is in this strange, mixed condition of total elation and on the verge of total collapse. It’s hard to describe if you haven’t done it, but that’s how it is. No runner at the end of a marathon, not a single one, is looking for danger. They’re looking for water and energy bars, they’re looking for those metallic blankets, they’re looking for the people who will give them their shirt and their medal, they’re looking for their loved ones, they’re looking for a place to collapse. And, their loved ones are looking for them. Nobody’s looking for danger.

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