5AM Runner

A Mexican Standoff


gooseThe summer is here and I am so back!!  Back in the running business, rushing out of the house at the first crack of dawn and loving it, enjoying every moment before, during and after!  Also, back by popular demand is my ability to focus, to block out all distractions and outside events, to create an impenetrable cocoon around me.  The moment I am outside and the running music hits the earphones – it is enough to send me through a mystical porthole to another dimension, where nothing else exists, and nothing can break through the bubble of enjoyment.  Well, almost nothing…
 
On this particular morning, the sun was still coming up and those who know me well are familiar with the fact that I am basically legally blind and can’t see much beyond about 10 feet away.  Considering the relative darkness of the hour, it is easy to understand how the following sequence of events could unfold.  Unbeknownst to me, my route that morning crossed paths with a family of geese, led by a large & well-built Father Goose, accompanied at his side by the Mother Goose, as well as about a hundred little children-geese.  Before I knew it, I ran directly into the midst of their family procession, and I could tell right away that the Father Goose was not happy about my surprise appearance, as he quickly jumped in front of the pack to face me man-to-man.  Some would call it an instinct to protect his family, but I am more inclined to believe that he was just showing off in front of his woman; either way, he took several steps toward me in a very aggressive and committed manner – he was clearly ready to go! 

I didn’t exactly have time to explain to him that I had no plans to go after his female counterpart (despite her attractiveness), nor that I would ever do anything to hurt his little geese-kids (as I am strongly against hurting any animals in any way.)  Believe me, at that moment, it was not about any explanations.  It was all about me and him, mano-o-mano, and I simply could not back down!  Those of you that have a Y chromosome will easily understand this - there is no way in hell I could possibly back down first, despite the danger and despite all his hissing… It’s a guy thing.

Typically, in confrontations of this caliber, a woman can and should play the part of a peace-maker and calmly suggest that both men take a step back and cool down… Well, unfortunately, many women also enjoy watching their men get into fights over them, and Mrs. Goose was no exception.  She clearly seemed impressed with her husband’s heroics, and, as a result, there didn’t seem to be a possible resolution to this good old-fashioned Mexican standoff…
 
Luckily, a car with high beam headlights flew right by us, momentarily scaring us both and giving us a safe way out (without openly losing our manly dignity).  I continued on my way, knowing that I didn’t back down an inch and without a doubt my opponent also scored points with his wife for the bravery. 

Life often presents these unexpected opportunities to test your mettle, and it’s always fun to see your own reaction in each situation.  Let’s just hope my next encounter is not with a family of bears crossing the road; not sure how my manliness will stand up to that test…