New Years is always a fun time in the Zombie camp. Two fun albeit silly events are on New Years Eve, and New Years Day. My good friends Kathy and Brian Hoover from RunnersWorld-Tulsa put on Race Into the New Year, a 5K that starts at 11:45 New Years Eve, and for 99.9% of the participants, finishes the next year! The following day, Tulsa Area Triathletes (TAT) with the help of RW puts on the Polar Bear Plunge, a dive into the frigid waters of the Arkansas River. So many great friends + running. What a great way to ring the new year in! Throw in a spectacular fireworks display, some bubbly, and black eyed peas, and it was perfect.
The course, which was intended to be a 5K like every year, had to be changed due to some of the remaining snow from the blizzard of Xmas 2009 melting and running across the pavement and refreezing into sheets of black ice. It was as if the Oilers had loaned out their Zamboni machine and reglazed almost all of the running surface. It would have been a disaster to have sent the runners on the intended course. Instead, race officials worked a miracle and devised an out-and-back that resulted in a mile course, and we did that course twice for a two mile run. There was a narrow wooden bridge that was congested with runners, and the ones thinking they were going for a world record plowed their way through the more recreational runners (like me). A few peeps might have been disgruntled, but GET OVER IT! I understand some people treating it like a race, and I understand other people treating it like a social event (which it was.) If anyone wants to get mad, they need to go outside and cuss the snow and cold temperatures out. Go now. Yes, right now. DO IT! .................................... There, don't you feel better?
Jan 1, for the 4th year, a bunch of crazies jumped into the less-than-pure waters of the Arkansas River. This event has grown by leaps and bounds each year, and this year had more way more spectaturs than participants. People seem to be amazed at the foolhardiness of jumping into a river in January, and particularly the Arkansas. I do have a small growth on the side of my head....maybe?? Hmmm.
In this event, one can often see more skin than when on the beach in July! Glen, on the left, shows off his buff bod. Tom, well, I just didn't need to see that. The dude on the right felt the need to keep his identity hidden. Nearly 3 months after losing a bet, Brian pays up by wearing a pink tutu.
This year, besides just a quick dip in the river, we had to run about 1/4 mile, dive into a swimming pool, get out and run about 1/2 mile, and submerge in the river, and then run 1/4 mile back to the start/finish. Running after being submerged in near freezing water, led to some wind chill issues. When I got out of the pool, I thought surely I was in trouble. But, I ran, and running got the blood pumping and I felt so invigorated and alive it was euphoric! Such a BUZZ!
As most of you know, I have a habit of cross-dressing for events such as this. This year, however, I did not win an award for hairiest, sexiest, buffest, or even the new "best cross-dresser." This dude, Jason Alexander, won the award for best cross-dresser. Oh, I suppose he deserved it. People just don't like a hairy man in a bikini anymore. Congrats, Jason. :-)
I opted for a more conservative look this year. I thought this dress was really pretty, and I do know now that I am a size 14. Since I believe in accessorizing, I thought this orange camo hat really was a nice accent to my attire. I was called "Aunt Ken" and someone else told me their grandma called and wanted her dress back! Left to right: Susan, her brother Jason, Aunt Ken, and Jason of trail running fame.