April 19th marks the anniversary of the first Boston Marathon, which was run in 1897. This is an event that we all would like to see. If you decide to jump on the time travel train, please take this list to ensure you don’t put a big ole tear in the time continuum. All aboard.
Top Ten Things Not to Do at the First Boston marathon.
10 If you go, do not think you can sneak into the race and be lost in the thousands of participants. If you do, at best you’ll double think your decision. At worst, you will be noticed immediately by the judges since there are only fifteen participants. (You have a choice Lucian. Pay the entry fee or drop out. That policeman over there is going to make sure you choose one or the other.)
9 If you go, do not try to tell Tiny the WWF champ that the 24.5-mile course he has laid out should be 26.2 miles. If you do, at best, Tiny will ignore you. At worst, Tiny, who just finished his remedial math training, will think he’s made a math error and needs to cover it up. (There was no error, Lucius. The course distance was determined by a committee. It was changed to 26.2 miles in 1908. This is not going to help you now that Tiny has decided you need to be silenced. I’m sure he will let you out of that barrel once the race is over.)
8 if you go, do not suggest that the race be held on a Sunday. If you do, at best, you’ll be ignored. At worse, you’ll make that suggestion in earshot of the Boston Bishop. (Sundays are sacrosanct here in Boston, Lukas. The race was designed to be held on Patriots Day, which commemorates the beginning of the Revolutionary War. If Patriot’s Day fells on a Sunday, then the race was held on Monday. It took until 1969 for Patriot’s Day to be established as the third Monday of April. All this is well and good but too late to prevent you from being declared a heretic.)
7 If you go, do not mention the under the two-hour finish of Kenyan marathoner Eliud Kipchoge in 2019. If you do, at best, folks will think you have been drinking. At worst, you’ll mention it to John Mc Dermott, the winner who finished at 2:55:10. (Now John is wondering where you came from Lionel. Telling him Kipchoge’s time was 1:59:40 won’t stop him from the nose punch that is heading your way. in fact that info might just speed it up.)
6 If you go, do not wear the freebee Gateraid T-shirt that you scored at the Micky Mouse marathon last year. If you do, at best, it is under your sweatshirt. At worst, John Graham, the first Olympic team manager, and Boston Athletic Association member, will want to know all about it. (Now you are in a fine kettle of fish, Luciano. How are you going to explain sponsorships since the first did not start until the 1980s? Better think fast, cause Graham doesn’t look like a guy who suffers fools lightly.)
5 If you go, do not ask about the Red Sox baseball game that usually accompanies a marathon event. If you do, at best, no one will understand what you are talking about. At worst, the organizers will think you are trying to take over the event. (Although it is a tradition for the Boston Red Sox to play a game before each marathon, they didn’t start doing it until 1903. It looks like you have created quite a stink, Leif. Tell em you lost your head there for a moment.)
4 If you go, do not ask about the lack of women participants. If you do, at best you’ll get a “What are you thinking?” look. At worst, the Boston Athletic Association will take you for a sufferage militant. (Those big Policemen over there, Lennon are just waiting for orders to clap you in irons. The first woman did not officially participate in the Boston marathon until 1972. Nina Kuscsik became the first official female participant to win the Boston Marathon in 1972.)
3 If you go, don’t mention running in a costume. If you do at best, you’ll get a laugh or two. At worst, you’ll be banned from the city. (The idea of running in costume did not become popular until Gary Fanelli did it as Elwood Blues, Dan Aykroyd’s character from The Blues Brothers, in 1981. Since he was successful, the idea caught on. Don’t try to tell the marathon organizers this fact, Ludwig. You may end up in a padded room.
2 If you go, do not ask the organizers if they allow bandits. If you do, at best, they will think you are talking about bandannas. At worst, someone will call the sheriff. (You know that bandits are unregistered runners that were tolerated, Lenny. Although not forbidden bandit runners have been discouraged since 2015. I think I would try an exit strategy since that sheriff’s deputy looks like he has no sense of humor at all.
1 If you go, do not wear your Hoka One One Carbon X running shoes and your Lululemon running suit. If you do, at best people will stare. At worst, someone will yell “Alien,” and your day is over. (A cardinal rule is to fit in, Langston. The running gear of the day should look like you are in your underwear and wearing combat boots. Yes, now that is more like it.)