Dear Old Sandwich Half Marathon Race Director,
Or, Craig. Can I call you Craig? When I signed up for the Old Sandwich Half Marathon (my first!), the rest of my running group made fun of me. Because first of all, it’s a funny name, and secondly, no one else from our group was running it. They were all running the Providence Half (the weekend I was doing Muckfest) or the Newport 10-miler, but I really wanted to do a half. Plus, my parents live right near Old Sandwich Rd and the kids and I always joke about giving each other an old sandwich as we drive by. So I stuck with you, Craig. Since no one else was running, let alone had heard of, the OSHM, we would joke that I was the only person running it. Turns out we were only one person off.
I trained hard for this half marathon, Craig. I limited myself to one glass of wine on Friday nights because on Saturday mornings, we’d do our long runs. I battled IT band syndrome, which my friend Becky, a mother of four, has compared to childbirth (unfavorably, by the way). I endured ice baths. And not fake ice baths with no actual ice like I recently found out my coach Diane does (“It’s still really cold!” Really, Diane?), but real ice baths that make you yell, “I wish I’d never been born!” like you’re a teenager and the ice bath is your mom who just grounded you in front of your friends. I ran around the pothole-ridden English High track in the pouring rain and in the blazing sun with sweat stinging my eyes, doing speed intervals when I wanted to be home eating nachos. I bought new shoes, and not even the cute ones I wanted, but the sensible ones that work with my Bigfoot-meets-Frankenstein running gait.
I hate to Lauren Conrad you, Craig, but YOU KNOW WHAT YOU DID. But for everyone else’s benefit, let’s recap: Two days before the Old Sandwich Half Marathon, you called me. Were you calling to wish the lone Old Sandwich runner good luck, Craigster? Were you calling to give me some last minute hydration tips, C$? Nope. You were calling to cancel the race. Two days before. You said something about construction making the course unsafe, but I kinda missed everything you said after “cancelled” because it’s hard to hear much over the sound of your dreams crashing to the ground. I think you also mentioned something about having my entry transferred to a late September race.
But I don’t want to run a late September half marathon, because I trained for an early June half marathon. I don’t know if you’re a runner, but it’d be kind of like blindfolding someone, making them march across a desert for six weeks, leading them to an oasis, and then telling them they can have a drink in, wait for it, three months. Also, training for a September half means long training runs in August, and at the current global warming rates, it’ll be around 250º F in August in Boston, according to my calculations. So, as I say to my five-year old when he’s doing something super annoying, “No thanks!” Craig. No thanks.
Plus, I was so ready, both physically and mentally, to run. For weeks, people had been asking me, “are you ready?” and I actually believed myself when I said yes. Three years ago, I trained for my first half marathon and had to drop out due to an IT band injury about a week and a half before the race. It was devastating. But even my IT band gave me more than two days notice. So, this half marathon was really about three years in the making.
Luckily for me, I found the Twin Lobster Half Marathon & 1-Mile Challenge, which was on the same day and had race day registration. Turns out I was not the only person signed up for the OSHM and also not the only person who was on the Hulk-like end of the Anger Scale over the last minute cancellation. And aside from someone giving me a flat tire just as I crossed the start line and a slightly hillier than desired course, it was a great race. I did it, Craig! But let’s not high-five yet.
Long story not that short, I’d like my race fee back. You may have received my emails saying as much. You did not receive my voicemails, although I tried to leave them many times, but your voicemail always says, “We did not get your message. Either because you were not speaking or because of a bad connection. To disconnect, press 1. To re-record your message, press 2.” But I was speaking, Craig, and I did press 2, but the same thing happened, every damn time. This voicemail purgatory was only slightly less annoying than someone calling two days before your first half marathon to cancel it.
So, Craig, I look forward to hearing back from you. I will be satisfied with a reimbursement of my race fee and slightly more than satisfied if you throw in an Old Sandwich race tee, because, hey, the name’s still pretty funny. And anyway, what are you going to do with all those old shirts?
As your voicemail says, thanks, have a great day.