First there was a Man. Then a Woman. Then in quick succession, two cats, a confused dog beast, and two kids. I stay at home with them. I'm the Man

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Rooster, Run

So I'm lurching my way through my little 3 mile (generously measured) run the other day. I've started running again because I'm stupid and I also I don't like taking my genetically disadvantaged fat guy  medications. I'd do anything to avoid taking that shit. Even running. Funny though, if Percocet lowered cholesterol, I'd never run again.

But I'm running and I'm at about the 3/4 point and I have the headphones in and the Alice In Chains song Rooster comes on and even as I am aware of how awful I am,  I start to identify with the song. The Rooster is a song written by the band's guitar player about his father. His father was a member of the 101st Airborne division and Team Leader of a Long Range Recon Patrol during the Vietnam War. Which of course is exactly like a chubby jew gasping his way through a half- hour run on a sunny Sunday morning in America. I need more shame.


Me: Sweating and gulping and jiggling and trudge-jogging and wishing I had a burrito.

My headphones swell with the intro. The lyrics kick in:

"Ain't found a way to kill me yet"
Eyes burn with stinging sweat"

And even though I know how I sound, in my head I'm still like, "Holy shit. That's me! My eyes are totally burning with stinging sweat. And I'm still alive. I'm the Rooster!

It deteriorated from there:

"Seems every path leads me to nowhere"

No shit. I'll barely make it home at this rate

"Wife and kids and household pet
Army green was no safe bet"

Check, check, check, and running is extremely dangerous for a man in my condition.

"The bullets scream to me from somewhere"

If one interprets"bullets" to mean "yippee dogs" then fucking check.

"Here they come to snuff the Rooster
Yeah, here come the Rooster, yeah
You know he ain't gonna die
No, no no, you know he ain't gonna die

Walkin' tall machine gun man
They spit on me in my homeland
Gloria sent me pictures of my boy"

This part is where it gets to be just a little bit of a stretch. Although, I was about 59% certain I was going to live, and I spent some formative years in a small town in New Hampshire and while I wasn't often spit on, I did not get along with many people. Ok, so I'm hanging in.

"Got my pills 'gainst mosquito death"

Cutter with Deet. Bam, I'm back!

"My buddy's breathing his dying breath"

Took the dog with me and she is panting pretty good at this point. Check

"Oh God please won't you help me make it through"

If I had a nickel for every time I said that when I went for a run in my life I'd probably have upwards of two dollars.  Because I hate running.

Then that refrain comes in again and at that point I'm just about home and filled with an electrifying simultaneous sense of shame and accomplishment. Felt that A LOT as teenager. At least I'm exercising again.



  1. Simultaneous shame and accomplishment? Sounds like a Tuesday to me. And Wednesday and Thursday and...I have to go eat something now.

  2. Hey, sounds good to me! And avoid that Lipitor - more and more studies are coming out questioning the long-term benefits. I'll think of you while I am attempting my bike-a-thon on Saturday. Maybe I should download that song.

  3. Sounds about right. I find that exercise always come with a healthy dose of self-loathing. Helps me REALLY feel the burn.

  4. I'm struggling getting the kids to TRAIN to run 3 miles. Grrr.

  5. Okay, that had me rolling. Seriously hit the funny nerve with me tonight. Great piece.


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