Blog of Chang

from the computer of chang in the den of chang in the house of chang which belongs to the chang(s)

Monday, January 16, 2006

Things I learned about Marathons

This past weekend I volunteered with some friends at the Third Annual P.F. Chang's Rock N Roll Marathon (click on the title for the link) in Phoenix. Having considered doing the half marathon (you have to finish 13 miles in 6 hours - a feat I could hopefully do without having to ever run) and then deciding not to due to my 'delicate' condition, I thought the least I could do was hand out water to those more motivated than I.

So I got up at 4 a.m. on Sunday morning and met my friends to drive downtown and be there by 5:30. The streets were not yet closed when we got there, so that kind of hampered the putting tables up in the street effort. After filling the cups (more on that in the list of things I learned), we waited for the first runners to come through. Since we were at the first water station, we got both the marathon and half marathon runners (luckily, not at the same time). There were 10,000+ of the former, and 22,000+ of the latter. It was an interesting and fun experience, and here are the things I learned:

  1. Runners are nice when you hand them water...most of them said "thanks" as they ran by.
  2. Runners are litterers. They take one sip of the water and then throw the rest on the ground, with the cup.
  3. The water came from a hydrant, was put in big, lined garbage cans, and then put into the cups. I would have thrown it on the ground after one sip, too.
  4. Runners shed clothing as they run the race.
  5. The aforementioned clothing gets picked up by the Salvation Army after the runners have disappeared.
  6. Watching thousands of runners coming at you in a pack - and knowing you have something they think they want - can be a rather frightening experience for a 5'1" non-athletic, female introvert.

So that was my experience. It should be noted that these things may be specific to my experience at the RNR Marathon Water Station 1, and not necessarily representative of other marathons or even other water stations at this marathon.

Congrats to Cousin Jen who ran and finished in the top 1/3 overall and in her division!! Way to go!!

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Christmas with the Changs

This is George (and Patrice's arm).

This is Jake (and our Christmas tree).

Jake and George are Chloe's new boyfriends. We originally thought that George was going to be the boyfriend, but then Jake kind of stepped in. George is the "I want to cuddle and be calm" boyfriend, and Jake is her "I want to play and fight over toys" boyfriend.

They came with Patrice to visit for Christmas. We had lots of fun, and Chloe was very good about welcoming all three of them into our home considering she's quite a princess these days. The picture of George had to be taken while the photographer and camera was under the blanket. He's a little timid. The picture of Jake was kind of on the run...he didn't really want to pose.

We loved having Patrice (and company) for Christmas this year. We had our traditional Christmas Eve with my parents and family who is in the area. It was lots of fun, and included stuff for the babies, a bottle full of Niacin, and Dad riding his new bike inside the house. Christmas day Mark worked and we went to Uncle Larry's for dinner with more friends and family. Overall it was a wonderful time for all of us! We are now looking forward to what the next year has to bring!