On Saturday, Corinne and I did the MS Mud Run – Twin Cities. (Tell me again, exactly which city is Dresser, Wisconsin's twin?) It was a fantastically kick-ass time, with a ton of great stories to tell. For shorthand versions of some of those, see below.* The thing I want to talk about though is the positively equalizing effect of thick, full-coverage mud.
We live in a world wracked with body image issues and flagging self esteem. Fortunately, what was true in Akron in 1938 is just as true today. Everyone looks great when they're covered head-to-toe in mud. There's something undeniably sexy about a woman willing to sabotage her manicure to support MS research.
Slathered on, monochromatic mud, obtained in the charitable pursuit of a goal, just does something that highlighted streaks and smoky eye-shadow never could.
Complete mud immersion therapy can balance out imagined flaws. Insecure a-cup girls? I'm going to guess you could pack on at least a cup size worth of muck after crawling through 6+ miles of it. And c-cup girls? Oh, who the hell am I kidding? You all looked great right from the start.
I want to be perfectly clear that my point isn't anything lurid or crude. Seriously. (I climbed a lot of steep hills on Saturday with my face mere feet away from Rachel's or Jodi's ass [or Justin's ass, too, I suppose]. And, since both Isaac and Chad could swiftly and easily beat me senseless [as, I suppose, could both Corinne and Reba], I want the record straight that my mind was always exactly where it belonged – on the searing pain in my left calf and the jabbing rocks in my right boot.
I'm talking about the pure, wholesome beauty that every person possesses when glistening in the glorious filth of human kindness. And that's straight-up hot.
*Shorthand versions of Mud Run stories
• We signed up two teams. My Curmudgeons ran in the competitive-coed-teams-of-five division. Corinne's Angels With Dirty Faces ran in the DGAP division. (Don't Give a Poop. No, seriously. That's what they call it.)
• After much shuffling and more who's in / who's out than an MLB all-star game, the rosters that lined up to face the starting gun were:
• Justin Gauerke
• Jodi Rohe
• Rachel Watkins
• Rachel's fellow-phy-ed-teacher buddy, Mark (a.k.a., Grambo)
Angels With Dirty Faces
• The always angelic Corinne
• Corinne's sister, Annette (who must have some angel in her, genetically speaking, given Corinne's angelic status)
• The must-be-angelic-because-everyone-seems-to-like-her Gina Nacey
• Honorary angel and much better sport than he gets credit for, Eric Nacey
• Gina had a plane to catch that evening, but she wanted to get all the way to the end of that course, just to jump off the tower into the 7-foot "mud pool".
So she and Eric sprinted off from the beginning (they ended up running a faster time than our competitive team) and left Corinne and Annette to spend some quality bonding time that they don't get much of. I think that was really cool. There's a gap in age between Corinne and Annette. I'm not going to get into how big a gap it is, but suffice it to say that Corinne's Barbie clothes were out of style by the time they got handed down to Annette. This was one of very few times that they've gotten to spend a few hours together without kids or spouses or anyone, just working together toward a goal. Worth the price of admission, right there.
• No one got seriously hurt. That's a legitimate concern here. I'm not sure how we managed to get 9 of us through that course with nothing more than some truly nasty looking blisters. I think I was the most wounded of anyone and my greatest injury occurred when I pulled a muscle making the always-dangerous parking lot run from the gas station to the ATM before we even left Sartell.
• Chad Gertken has the patience of a saint. He showed up with us, waited through the Angels' wave, then continued waiting while the Curmudgeons ran, and never complained at all. Not even an eye roll. Chad – and I say this in the most reverent tone possible – you are the consummate bag bitch.