Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Things that go through my head when I run

I went for a long run yesterday at MacRitchie Reservoir, as I did last Monday. I was disappointed last week because there are signs everywhere advising visitors not to feed the monkeys but I saw not a single monkey. Only a giant lizard. Doubly disappointed.
This week I was pleased to see that monkeys really do live in the park. Some moron was feeding fish in the lake with bread or something, and got upset when a monkey showed up for a handout. I am no expert on the habits of Singapore's wildlife, but I learned very quickly that where there is food and a bunch of trees, monkeys will show up looking for a meal.
Running here on the equator is hot. And humid. And miserable. Until I am finished, and then I think, "I can't wait to do that again." Last week I tried out these trails for the first time, and I did not know that there were lockers and changing areas available. I had brought nothing other than some water, my keys and my iPod. This was not a problem for me, but it was for the other passengers on the train and the bus that I took home. Yesterday I decided to be considerate, and bring a change of clothes now that I new I had a place to store things while I ran. Last week my iPod had not been charged, and it lost what power it had almost immediately, but yesterday I planned ahead and made sure it was charged.
When I run, and listen to music, lots of things go through my head. If I am running a race its all numbers. I look at my watch constantly, and calculate how fast I have to run to make my goal time, etc. I ran a few races back in the spring where I made a conscious effort not to look at my watch. That combined with the shape I was in at the time proved to be a successful strategy for a PR in two back to back half marathons and a 10k. But I am back to staring at my watch. On yesterday's run, I was totally unconcerned about time, only about being on my feet for nine miles, regardless of how long it took me. So my mind was free to wander. The great and mysterious thing about running is that my mind almost always stays in a happy place. I listen to music, and I start making lists of top 5 songs of this or that category, a la one of my favorite movies, High Fidelity. Top five covers, top five true rock and roll songs, etc. So yesterday, I was thinking about songs that are perfect, just the way they are. Songs that could not be improved upon, in any way. These are not necessarily my favorite songs, but they are great, and I love them. Also, when I do this, I have a hard time rounding out 5, so this list only has 4. Also, this isn't necessarily a category that is limited, since its not truly a "top" 5, just a short list I came up with. Here goes:
"Then He Kissed Me" by The Crystals - this was the song that inspired the list. I was listening to it, and thought, this song is amazing. Its absolutely perfect.
"Tangled Up In Blue" by Bob Dylan - I have said before that I want to believe that Dylan is over rated, then I hear something like this, and I know I am wrong.
"Hallelujah" by Jeff Buckley - Simply... Beautiful.
"Here it Goes Again" by OK Go - Silly pop can be perfect, too. I may be unduly influenced by the fact that this song has the greatest music video of all time, but I don't think there is anything that could make this song better or catchier.

What have I left out? Comment and share what songs would make your list.


  1. My Sharona by The Knack - aint nuthin wrong with that song.

  2. Ooh, I've got a couple -

    Accidentally Kelly Street by Frente
    Be Here Now by Ray LaMontagne

  3. Drift Away - Dobie Gray's opus...
    Levelland - Robert Earl Keene's amazing cover or Larry McMurtrey live at Ashland Coffee & Tea.