Sunday, November 25, 2007

tell me why you run everyday.....

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Today I wandered back out onto the Super-Secret TSI training compound here in Central Delaware. It's really a beautiful area of this old world --- you may say, postcard perfect. Full of pines, hardwoods, and a serene pond; full of mirrored water. Critters jumping, running, and sounding off in their native tongues. On this cold mid-Atlantic morning, I encountered deer, squirrels, and a large red fox. The woodpeckers were out in force, staking their claims to corners of the forest; apparently unaware of my presence as they carried out their noisy duties. And, at such an early hour; not another human was seen. It's easy to think of this as a perfect place to run; the path blanketed with fallen leaves, winding around a quaint body of water; with perfect views at every bend. But....

...this is not what makes this part of the First State an inspirational place to train. Because there have been so many other parts of the country, and world; that I have loved to run in. What makes this place special is the same thing that made my thousands of miles on Noland Trail and Seashore State Park; or, my many thousands of miles in Blackwater State Forest special. Rather, it was the people I shared the times with.

As a runner, it's difficult not to remininse; no doubt, many of you understand exactly how i feel. Running is passionate, so alive; so breathtaking. Sharing it becomes intimate. We know each other at our best; and our worst. We've struggled together, and shared incredible joy together. Runners have been my best friends for over twenty years now. I like them.

And, today was one of those days when it all came back. For all the emotional distress, and pain, of the past several months; today was a good day. Recalling special friends and special times; and remembering that today i am exactly where i'm supposed to be. As are you. And we're all OK; doing the best that we can. Each morning when i look in the mirror, i say a prayer for each of you, and for me. That we may all keep our hearts open to giving and receiving love. If you're reading this, then you've made a difference in my life (or you will); and i appreciate you. That you can be sure of.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

42 days till Fattest Butt '08

frost on the pumpkin's ; this mornin'....
details posted on this site by 12/15.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Dear Mr. Hitman,

After much discussion and coercion, I am officially throwing my name, as well my wife's name (Debbee), into the hat for the Fattest Butt 08 run. The snowshoes are ready, with sharpened edges to handle the steep glacial hills of Delaware. Ice axes will be out in an attempt to ward off the killer squirrels, but I only have 6000 feet of rope... Hopefully the global warming turns quickly so that it is cooler than last years jungle. I am also trying to recruit anyone else foolish enough from work to show up like Aggie Slug Leif did last year - so far there are no takers...

By the way, we saw your undercover arse at JFK, and ran into many other slugs out and about during the run.

Have a great Thanksgiving and Holiday season, and we will see you in January!

Talk to you later,

John Straub

p.s. dude; those hunter s. thompson sunglasses gotta go :)

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving Sluggos...

...and what a beautiful day it is. I stuck my "big bird" in the oven at six a.m. ; and was outside on the trails. wobbling along through the forest, smiling like a madman; just like the olde days. i am still fat; but i feel good, and i've been here before. i am on my way back; and life is good. cain't lie; '07 was a rough year, and i won't mind seein' it go; but, '08 is gonna be a great one, i can feel it.
today i am thankful for so much; my family, my health, and my friends. and, that includes each of you. time is precious; so if you're taking the time to read this; turn to your family and take the time to tell them how much you care. we are passing through; i promise you. the day is coming when we don't wake up; and it's o.k. ... so, let's make today count!
happy days, da' hitman

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Threats, Lies, and Letters to the Editor...

Dearest Slug Brother!

Due to a slight lack in judgement (err. . .running JFK), I'm currently fiberglassed up to the left knee and in desperate need of some ginger brandy and cute nurses adorned with the rumored "TeamSlug Thong". Despite Pokey Slug's acute warnings, I ran the darned thing anyhow and managed to break my fibula around mile 15. As stubborn as I am, I decided to just try to beat it into submission (it worked when I twisted my ankle at the RBC 50K), but that apparently isn't a good thing to do when the bone is fractured. So, I hobbled along to mile 27, when our dear Pokey played the role of Florence Nightingale and came sprinting to my rescue.

Anyhow, I don't think I'll be up for running the January Fattest Butt. However, I wouldn't miss it for the world. I do intend to show up and egg the able bodied folk on in whatever capacity I can. In addition, I have had two lovely young ladies promise their attendance. Their names are:

Meredith Murphy--King of Prussia PA, and
Andrea Berninger--from somewhere in VA (warning, she's fast, and although this is her first ultra, i can almost guarantee we'll need to throw an extra loop in for her).

Hope all is well, and I hope you have a great Turkey Day!


Down and Durty Slug


Dear Bro' Da Hitman,

Were you undercover at the JFK this past weekend? I did see Sistah Pokey Slug,
but didn't realize that you might have been there; and, stealthily leaving your snail trail around
and about.

Anyway, you might have learned that I did the distance once again in
slime time, just under the final cutoff at 11:47. It was a great day
out - and the evening was just as good, getting my fill of carbs,
protein, and alcohol at the Bavarian restaurant in Hagerstown.

Anyway, Sistah Pokey Slug took advantage of my disoriented state to
take some snaps of my sorry backside somewhere in the middle miles. (It
is irrelevant that I might have waved it at her in greeting, since my
hands were taken up with my canteen and a large handful of potato

I hope that this gesture won't be taken amiss as I once again put my
hat in the ring (or my pseudopod on the line) for the event in January.
If I haven't compromised the customary standards of conduct of the
inveterate invertebrates, I would look forward to meeting you in January
at the usual rendezvous spot near a certain Delaware body of water.

For now, here's hoping that you add me to your roster (waiving the
character requirement) and have a nice Thanksgiving. Warm sluggish
regards to you and Sis PS, Bro' Sir Sweet Cheeks

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Always calling me home....

What a perfect day at JFK. Nice temps, nice breeze; and tons of nice people. In fact, 1070 finishers; incredible! Recreational runners and serious athletes, olde friends, and friends that have moved on; people I've known for over twenty years; and people I've met at Slug events this year. What a beautiful life!
Running changes our perceptions of the world around us. It makes good times great; and makes the hard times acceptable. I've been struggling for so long; it's good to smile and laugh; and see those old familiar faces. Looking down through the finisher's roster is like a family reunion. And those olde familiar names bring joy to my heart. I am so happy for each of you. I understand the magnitude of the accomplishment; and cherish it, just like you. So tonight my friends; congratulations! I hope your holiday season is the best ever. From Team Slug, and The Hitman; happy days, flattest foot freddie.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Fattest Butt... T minus 59 days !!!

...that's less than two months for you smart sluggos; so the planning must begin. flatfoot freddie has been in consultation with The Weather Channel, and an old witchdoctor friend in n'oleans. they seem to agree on one thing. fatt butt day is gonna be colder and wetter than last year's non-event.

it wouldn't be unusual for us to have a foot or two of snow on the trail. which, normally wouldn't be a problem; except for the extremely steep drop-offs, and treacherous precipices that often form; up to six feet thick; as glacial ice overtakes the deepest and darkest forest. throw in the central delaware womkpon wolves; and you're taking your life in your own hands. in fact; i certainly advise you not to come. and, if you must; then definitely bring cold weather gear, 7000 yards of high-tensile climbing rope, crampons; and at least a weeks supply of dried beans. any less, is just too dangerous. remember; no firearms in the park... it's probably safe to bring a crossbow.

for first time sluggos; beware, this is NOT a race. this is a non-event. we make normal fat-ass events, look like the london marathon. this is BE-Low key. if you finish, if you come out of the woods alive, and if ya got ten u.s. dollars; for your efforts, you will receive the "World Famous, 100% cotton, Team Slug T-Shirt." if there is some food / drink you need to finish; please bring it. i assure you we will not have it; as with all slug events we will serve stale bread, and pond water (unless it's frozen).

If you've told me your coming; all good; but shoot me a quick note, confirming; and i look forward to seeing you in january. remember this event is limited to the first 39,500 entrants. (so register early) we hope to surpass the nyc starting field. and yes, katie holmes has been invited; and no, lance hasn't. team slug don't want no girly bike riders in our forest.

happy days, the big brown pony...