Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Road to the Broad Street Run paved with funny twists

Two years ago, Inquirer Sports Editor John Quinn, overweight and feeling it, would never have dreamed of competing in the Broad Street Run. Now back at it for his second Broad Street experience, this time a trimmer version claims he knows what he is getting into.

Road to the Broad Street Run paved with funny twists

The infamous glasses.
The infamous glasses.

Cue the Seinfeld theme.

There are times when you really have to wonder about fate, about certain little things you do that, in retrospect, actually come together for a reason.

And it makes you wonder.

On Tuesday night, my wife Amy and I had a date at Citizens Bank Park. Our son Jack was on a field trip with his sixth grade class. Last week, we all went to the Mets-Phillies game as part of the Phillies 5k swag.

We entered the right field gate and went through security. They patted me down and there’s no doubt they’re looking for contraband – like sneaking in a bottle of water or a foreign cheesesteak – than they are worried about finding any dangerous weapons on a 59-year-old white-haired Irishman wearing a down jacket (it was freakin’ cold).

To top it off, the third person in the security detail then asked me to open my eyeglass case. No foreign objects in there. But seriously dude.

I did what I was told, Catholic school upbringing with authority figures (yeah, 30 years younger than me, but hey).

We set off for McFadden’s and dinner. I read the menu and took out my glasses. I’ll have the Big Leaguer, I said, half corned beef and swiss sandwich and half hamburger. I ordered and put away my specs.

Big Leaguer came 10 minutes later. I didn’t send it down to Lehigh Valley but next time I’ll get the soup.

Anyway, we got to our seats in section 125. Tremendous tickets. Winter gloves, quick game.

No one can hit the Pirates young lefty who looks like he should be iCarly’s boyfriend on Nickelodeon or chasing Lexi on A.N.T. Farm on the Disney Channel.

After the seventh-inning stretch, Amy heads off to buy a Phillies shirt, so I watch in my seat, row 28, seat 16. She comes back, and we move a few seats to our left because the rest of the people on that side of the row took off.

As I got out of my seat – they are way too close together but when the wind chill is about 33 degrees, you don’t mind the proximity – my left pants pocket got caught in the arm of the chair. Didn’t seem to be a problem at the time.

We watched the top of the eighth, openly wondered why Cole Hamels was still pitching, saw Gaby Sanchez go deep and decided it was time to drive home.

We sauntered out, eventually exiting the way we came in. There was still some security but totally low key, and we walked to the parking lot where the jazzman was still playing his horn. I gave Coltrane a buck and we found our cars, having driven separately.

As I patted myself down, a ritual I do every day: check my wallet, keys, glasses and cell phone, I realized that my glasses were missing. Now, this would be about the umpteenth time I realized I didn’t have my glasses. Umpteenth is anywhere between 30 and 500 …

I ran through the motions … Checkpoint Charlie made me open my case … McFadden’s menu … and then it hit me … I left the glasses at the seats …

It took me about five seconds but I decided to go back. And here’s the funny thing. I was wearing my running shoes because I brought them with me because my Tom McAnns were barking on Monday.

So here I was running on the same street as the 5k, giving the security guards a wave “Forgot my glasses” and headed back toward Section 125.

I used my 12-minute-mile gait, rushing to not only find my glasses but also get back before the game ended to beat the mad rush out of the parking lot.

I reached my seat and the guy who sat next to me for eight innings pointed to the usher.

Wasting no time, I asked the man in uniform, who pointed me to guest services (hey, hire this guy, he moves fast) about 100 feet away.

Guest services woman barely lifted her head. “These yours?” “Yup.” “OK.”

And I was off again, racing against the top of the ninth as I listened to Scott Franzke’s radio call echo in the dingy underbelly of the stands down the first-base line.

I made it past the same security guards again, passed Coltrane again (no buck this time), got to my car and headed home.

I figure I got in a good half mile, decent pace. Nice sweat under the winter coat.

That’s two half miles in street clothes in one week, Market Street and Darien Street. The road to the Broad Street Run has some funny twists.

Had I not been asked to open my glasses case, I probably would have gone home from the parking lot in the first place and then realized that my glasses were gone.

Had I not been wearing my running shoes, I would have gone home first time, too.

Instead, I am typing this blog post wearing my glasses: post-cataract left eye, pre-cataract right eye.

I can see clearly now.

It was all meant to be.


Read more Sports Doc for Sports Medicine and Fitness.

About this blog

Whether you are a weekend warrior, an aging baby boomer, a student athlete or just someone who wants to stay active, this blog is for you. Read about our growing list of expert contributors here.

J. Ryan Bair, PT, DPT, SCS Founder and Owner of FLASH Sports Physical Therapy, Board Certified in Sports Physical Therapy
Brian Cammarota, MEd, ATC, CSCS, CES Partner at Symetrix Sports Performance
Ellen Casey, MD Physician with Drexel University Sports Medicine
Desirea D. Caucci, PT, DPT, OCS Co-owner of Conshohocken Physical Therapy, Board Certified Orthopedic Clinical Specialist
Michael G. Ciccotti, M.D. Head Team Physician for Phillies & St. Joe's; Rothman Institute
Julie Coté, PT, MPT, OCS, COMT Magee Rehabilitation Hospital
Peter F. DeLuca, M.D. Head Team Physician for Eagles, Head Orthopedic Surgeon for Flyers; Rothman Institute
Joel H. Fish, Ph.D. Director of The Center For Sport Psychology; Sports Psychology Consultant for 76ers & Flyers
R. Robert Franks, D.O. Team Physician for USA Wrestling, Consultant for Phillies; Rothman Institute
Ashley B. Greenblatt, ACE-CPT Certified Personal Trainer, The Sporting Club at The Bellevue
Eugene Hong, MD, CAQSM, FAAFP Team Physician for Drexel, Philadelphia Univ., Saint Joe’s, & U.S. National Women’s Lacrosse
Julia Mayberry, M.D. Attending Hand & Upper Extremity Surgeon, Main Line Hand Surgery P.C.
Jim McCrossin, ATC Strength and Conditioning Coach, Flyers and Phantoms
Gavin McKay, NASM-CPT Founder/Franchisor, Unite Fitness
Kevin Miller Fitness Coach, Philadelphia Union
Heather Moore, PT, DPT, CKTP Owner of Total Performance Physical Therapy, North Wales and Hatfield, PA
Kelly O'Shea Senior Health Producer, Philly.com
Tracey Romero Sports Medicine Editor, Philly.com
David Rubenstein, M.D. Team Orthopedist for 76ers; Main Line Health Lankenau Medical Center
Robert Senior Event coverage, Sports Doc contributor
Justin Shaginaw, MPT, ATC Athletic Trainer for US Soccer Federation; Aria 3B Orthopaedic Institute
Thomas Trojian MD, CAQSM, FACSM Associate Chief of the Division of Sports Medicine at Drexel University
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