You know how cheerleaders have a kind of peculiar place in American popular culture? They’re a sport, they’re not a sport, it’s all a misogynistic plot to keep women oppressed on the sidelines cheering for men meanwhile where are all the male cheerleaders cheering on women’s teams? Are you doing good spirit fingers? Let’s put all that aside for a second and talk about the people who come to cheer you on when you run.
As a runner, you suddenly realize that people who professionally cheer seem absolutely essential to society and your ability to run another tenth of a mile. Their gaze is your gasoline and before you know it you’re running through Hollywood Studios waving to people thinking you’re making this marathon shit look easy. “That’s right, just at mile 23, no big deal!”
I’m no professional athlete, but I am going to have some smokin’ hot ladies cheering for me at the New York City marathon in two weeks. One of them won’t have pompoms, but she will have a bagels, so basically she’s the Kirsten Dunst in this scenario.
This week, two friends from my rowing team decided they’re coming up to New York to cheer me on and I felt really guilty. “Oh, no, you guys don’t have to do that, marathon cheering is really boring and you won’t have any fun!” One of them ran NYC in 2011 and her response was “Shut up, we’re coming.”
This weekend, I’m picking up my poster board for Marine Corps Marathon signs, I got a little portable speaker to attach to my bike that is of questionable quality despite being from the dollar section at Target, pretzels and Swedish fish for runners to take, and I plan on wearing my patriotic mickey ears. Points on the course where I think you’ll be able to find me:
- Corner of Virginia Ave and Rock Creek Parkway between miles 9 and 10, just after you leave Georgetown
- I’m hoping to be able to get to Hains Point, around the halfway mark but most likely between 14 and 15
- The bridge between miles 20 and 21
I invite the DC area people to come out and cheer with me because the more spirit fingers, the better, people.