Thursday, April 17, 2008

A Warm Run in Bath.

On my way home from work, I stuck my head out of the window.

Mid 60's with a slightly warm wind.

Perfect running weather.

I hopped out of the car, kissed the kids on the forehead, made a beeline to the bedroom and tossed on my shorts, t-shirt, running shoes and bandana.

In less than a minute, my gladiator outfit was complete. I was ready for a run.

I hit the pavement with full gusto. But, before I could take a single stride, my neighbor pulled up beside me in his riding lawn mower.

"Howdy," he yelled.

I acknowledged him with a nod.

"Almost Deere Season," he yucked pointing toward the green and yellow beast under his ass. "You ready?"

"Yup," I said slightly annoyed and pointed toward the highway horizon. "Well, the road's a calling."

The sky was blue. The birds were chirping. Chainsaws were purring.

Spring was in full bloom in Bath, Ohio.

I inhaled and took a deep sniff of my surroundings.

Wild flowers. Freshly cut grass mixed with gasoline. A dead possum thawing out on the side of the road.

Ahhhhh, the smells of paradise.

I ran down the hill and dodged a beer can thrown out the window from a passing Porsche. A baby boomer returning from a hard day of 18 holes, no doubt.

The can clanked and clacked on the side of the road until it came to a complete stop in the mud. It was Labatt's Blue. The best selling Canadian beer in the world. Good brand. Bad tact.

"Thanks rich Bath dude who likes to drink and drive," I yelled as I put up my middle finger. "You rock."

I concentrated on the road. I concentrated on my running. I took deep breaths and let them out slowly, just like the September 2006 issue of Runner's World magazine told me to do.

For a brief moment, the world was my oyster. I closed my eyes and outstretched my hands in a Christ-like pose.

The rays of the sun warmed my cold, rickety bones shaking away the six-month Northeast Ohio winter. The warm air blew through my slowly receding hairline. "Ouch." I slapped at a sting on my arm. It was a dead misquito.

The blood dripping from my small wound let me know that the season was alive.

As I approached the bottom of the hill, I heard a scurry in the woods, followed by cracking branches and splashing water. Four deers hopped out of a brier bush and sailed into the woods. I could have sworn I saw turds fly out of one of the doe's butt.

"Fancy that," I thought. "I scared me up some game."

The beauty of nature indeed.

I careened into the graveyard to greet the dead bodies and wish them a happy Spring day.

"Hello Martin Douglas," I yelled to his gravestone. "Born January 3, 1920. Deceased September 20, 1985. Sixty-five years on this planet. Not too shabby."

"Hello Dolores Baker. Born May 21, 1905. Deceased June 17, 1940," I yelled at another gravestone. "Thirty-five years on this beautiful Earth...wait a minute. That's how old I am!

Suddenly I got depressed. Only three more months until I pass Dolores up on the annual birthday scale. Suddenly I got happy again.

"Ha Ha, Dolores," I whispered out of the side of my mouth to her decaying body six-feet under. "I'm almost beating you in the game of life."

I continued the loop, looked up from the ground and, suddenly, stopped in my tracks.

There was a car. Parked near the woods. Away from the gravestones. Next to the stream. And it was running in neutral.

I looked around for an old man (or an old woman) with flowers in hand kneeling and blubbering over a loved one's slab of stone. I found none.

"Who could it be?" I thought to myself. "Who could be parked in my graveyard?"

I decided to forge ahead and solve the mystery once and for all.

As I approached the car, I heard what sounded like Pink Floyd's The Great Gig In the Sky blaring from the speakers. The car was also moving side to side. Side to side. Side-to-side. In a rythmic motion. Almost to the music. As I got closer, I noticed a faint silhouette in the car.

Someone, or something, was inside.

As I slowly tip-toed beside the car, I slyly turned my head to see what was going on.

A full moon greeted me with a vertical "Hello." It was a dude's ass bobbing up and down. Up and down in the wide backseat of the car. Beneath him, I assumed, was a woman. The painted toenails gave her away.

I looked around for dug-up graves. There were none. More than likely, she was alive.

"Well, well, well," I thought to myself. "This lad was laying some backseat pipe to his girlfriend in the middle of a graveyard."

They didn't notice me. They didn't miss a beat. They were doing their thang without a care in the world.

Ahhhh...young love.

"Carry on my good man," I shouted to the gentleman in the car. "Carry on."

I, too, went on my way.

Yet as I headed out of the graveyard I couldn't stop myself from glancing back at the car one more time.

That's when I noticed the bumper sticker.

"Go Revere High!"

Screw Deere Season. It was Parking Season. Spring had officially sprung in Bath.

Oh, and for the parents who happen to be reading this blog...

Blue Toyota Corolla. Ohio License Plate #GVW 365.

Now you know where your kid was last night.

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