Monday, October 20, 2008

I Ran

It was a few minutes into the third quarter last Saturday afternoon when I felt the faint buzz of my phone ringing in my pocket.

Eleven rows up on the 30 yard line, in the middle of a lively Hawkeyes/Badgers game, is not the best place to field a phone call. I pulled the phone out of my pocket and the caller ID said "Englert."


I always say (and mean) that anyone at work can call me anytime. Plus, this was a show day (matinee of Schoolhouse Rock), and I knew that that whoever was calling wouldn't be doing it unless they really needed to.

I answered and tried to hear Sarah, my head bent over between my knees (while the people all around me were standing, screaming, jingling keys, spilling food). I finally had to get up and squeeze past the others in the row to get outside the stadium so I could hear.

Technical problems. The kind you can't troubleshoot over the phone. The kind that won't let the box officers sell tickets to the afternoon's show. The kind that need immediate fixing.


I had no choice but to leave the game. Looking around for a cab, unless there was one sitting right there I knew I didn't have time to wait. It was after 1:00, and the show started at 2:00. Must sell tickets. Must fix problem.

So I ran. I think it was probably a mile, maybe less. Seems farther when I think about it, but judging by the time it took to get there in a sporadic run-walk-run-walk pattern (between 10 and 15 minutes), it was probably a mile.

Great day for a run, actually. Sunny. Cool. I hardly broke a sweat, dressed in a be-bold-wear-gold long-sleeved Hawkeye T-shirt and baseball hat, running down the spiral walk(run)way at the end of the Burlington bridge, jetting across the UI library grass... walking up the steeeeeeeeeep Washington Street hill.

I've never had to literally run to work before. But in this case, I didn't really have a choice. And I was glad I was actually within running distance and not out of town. I got there. I fixed the problem. I stayed to help sell tickets. I got text updates about our stomping of Wisconsin.

I broke the box office dress code. Shhhh.

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