I’m a racehorse (running a marathon?)

I am a racehorse, all on or all off. This is the way I approach a great many things. It’s not like I chose it; it’s how I came.

In the last few years I started to hear the quote “Life is a marathon” (not a sprint). With several decades behind me, that sounds right but it’s not a sentiment that would have resonated when I was younger. I expect I probably thought a person got to a place where things were more or less figured out, with problems resolved, and then they could just kind of coast – if I thought about it. A marathon on the other hand, goes and goes till you drop. Cheery, no?

My own marathon, I suspect, works like this: Sprint, stop. Sprint, stop. Sprint, stop. I don’t guess I need to tell you that this isn’t the wisest way to run a marathon, but I can’t help it. It’s that racehorse business. I really don’t think racehorses make good marathoners. (Whenever somebody in a movie forces a horse to run a long way – to escape danger or rush somebody to safety or whatever – there’s usually a scene where the poor animal keels over, and in its last moments is thanked for its service. No more races for you Old Paint.)

At least I get stuff done during the sprint phases. This is what I tell myself. ‘Cause there’s just no way I’ll ever do it differently. Slow and steady, a measured pace, makes more sense for a marathon, I get that, but I don’t see it happening.


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