I went for a Sunday afternoon run with Baby Bear 3 (BB3) yesterday. I was all kinds of stoked when she agreed to run with me; she never used to be into running so it was nice to have her join me and it was equally nice to have a running partner that’s older than 9. Don’t bet me wrong…I love running with BB4 but it’s a complete different experience when you’re stopping and going every five minutes and you’re listening to the trials and tribulations of life on the playground in 3rd grade. As I have mentioned in previous postings, I was not a fan of elementary school myself. I get hives just thinking about it and when I have to relive the childhood social anxiety through the eyes of one of my bears…well, sometimes it’s more than I can deal with while I’m trying to get a run in.

But anyway, BB3 and I headed out onto the Mount Vernon Trail and the plan was to run into the city from Gravely Point, go around the Tidal basin and head back. In the planning phase of this run, errythign was perfect but the execution was a little off.

Just to give you some background, BB3 is pretty new to tail running. So that, added to the fact that she’s very rarely aware of her surrounding and is pretty clueless when it comes to any kind of etiquette (such as, you don’t run so far ahead of your running partner that you lose communications with them) makes for the perfect setting for some sort of “issue” on a trail.
Without any further explanation, at about mile 1 of the 4 mile run, BB3 is running past the turn off on the trail where I wanted to go. She was about 100 meters ahead of me beebop’n to her ipod, in her own little world when for some reason, she decided to turn around to see where I was. I motioned to her to stop running but just as I did, I saw a biker coming up from behind her and tried to motion to her to get off the trail. Well, I’m sure you figured out already, she didn’t step off the trail but instead stepped into the middle of it and at this point the biker (who was going too fast) had to come to a complete stop to keep from hitting her.

Okay, time for another aside. Yes, BB3 was in the wrong. She was being clueless and not paying attention to her surroundings but everything other than that was on the DB biker and what led to a MAJOR altercation on the path from that point forward. It is no secret that I HATE bikers. I could spend hours going on about how much I hate them…in fact, I think I have in one of my previous postings so I will keep it short here, BUT the bottom-line is they take waaaaay too many chances, go too fast around pedestrians, act like every time they are out riding they are competing in the Tour de France and they take themselves way too seriously and I’m not sure how they could considering how ridiculous they look in their full regalia. UGH!

But I digress, so this douche turns and says to my daughter, AFTER she apologizes for her faux pas,

“Why don’t you take those F’n earphones out and pay f’n attention.”

Well, you’ve heard of that expression, “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree?” Not that I’m proud of it in any way but BB3 has about as much patience and understanding for DBs as I do so she started in on this guy and by the time I got to the two of them they were in face to face verbal combat and being the ma’ma bear that I am, I immediately engaged in the combat myself. Things got really ugly…words that should never be said out loud were exchanged with vigor but eventually the DB got back on his bike and rode away leaving me and BB3 with all this anger to get rid of…and feeling kind of foolish.

Looking back on the whole thing, I’m feeling a little foolish for letting that tool get to me as much as he did, but the thing that is really resonating with me and what has put such a bee in my bonnet is how this person felt that not only did he have the right to talk the way that he did to my daughter, he felt justified in the way he carried on. It was like I was in 3rd grade on that playground all over again. All the rules and social order of adulthood were thrown out! “This is not nam there are rules.” I just don’t understand why people have to take themselves so seriously..and why when doing something fun and healthy do they have to make it such a competition?

Oh well, I can only control my own actions and in 2013 I’m going to work on not letting assholes get to me…especially when I’m running. And I am personally going to make it a goal to keep the peace on the tails and make sure everyone I run with understands the unspoken rules of trail etiquette. Cuz you know “this injustice will not stand, man.”
The rest of the run was fun..and got some cool pics of the monuments around the basin.

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Till next time my little petit fours…keep on keep’n on!