It all started, as these things often do, with a group of friends and a fridge full of beer. We were converged at Lisa and Carrie’s for a girls night dinner and were up to our eyeballs in all things XX (as in the chromosome, not some watered down version of XXX, lol). The conversation rolled around to Lil Sis’ 12 Running Goals of 2012 (click here and here for previous adventures), where she told us that November was “run with someone new” – they could be new or old to running and new or old to her, but they had to be someone she had never shared miles with. She was told us how she planned to do this on the morning of November 24th with a few friends from work. Moe (of my very-favorite-and-should-be-yours -too The Sneaker Shop) had recently received an email from a woman named Cindy Bradley, who was wondering if someone could organize a charity run for Hurricane Sandy victims. Moe did the “people who want to help Sandy survivors” and “people who have running goals to complete” math and VIOLA! WARTS was born! (hmm, are warts born? or is it more like they are contracted? poor WARTS already suffers abuse from its fellow acronyms – ohh, SCUBA and LASER, you think you are so chichi! – and “WARTS was contracted!” is only likely to garner further teasing, so let’s stick with “WARTS was born!”, mmmkay?)
We had a good laugh, one of many that night, when Patty came up with the WARTS acronym, but when you stop to think about it, it’s kinda perfect. It concisely states our intention: “We All Run Together for Sandy!”. And although warts are not really anyone’s favorite thing in life to deal with, so too are they a fact of it. They share this distinction with hurricanes – no one wants to live with or through hurricanes, but they are simply a part of living in a coastal system. Like warts, some will be worse than others and Sandy certainly was a doozy. We hope to never see the likes of her kind again in our lifetime, but if we do (and as a scientist I am sorry to say that at the very least it is likely we will deal with more flooding than we have in the past simply because of sea level rise – not gonna get all climate-y on you because no one really knows what the impacts of climate change will be, but now is probably a good time to pull our heads out of the sand and make some plans on how to adapt to our ever changing environment) we know that the runners among us will come together on a bright, beautiful morning and do what we do best:
One windy but beautiful run and piles and piles of food/cleaning supplies and $800 (!!) later, our WARTS 5k came to a close. Ocean City again showed it’s unwavering ability to seek out the good in the face of disaster and my heart hummed with pride for my old home and the friends who make it such a special place to live. Congrats to everyone who spent a little bit of time and a little bit of money to show Sandy what Jersey Strong looks like! And extra thanks to Moe, Patty, Janet, Bridget, Lisa and Carrie who showed us all just how fun WARTS can be!
PS I did not run since I am still nursing my groin injury – I expect to be running this week, yay – but I did enjoy my time as staff photographer, which distracted me (almost) from how sad it was not to run!
PPS Thanks to Lil Sis for making her 2012 Running Goals, they have all been a blast! What will you do for 2013??