Wednesday, May 26, 2010

As I walked into the airport to take my flight down to Atlanta on Saturday morning May 22, I was excited, but nervous. Excited that I would spend the weekend with my dear friend, Arica Ebersold, but nervous that she and I would have to endure the unknown of the Warrior Dash Southeast presented by Chicago based Red Frog Events. Warrior Dash is an obstacle course in muddy, wet, wilderness conditions. Beyond that, Arica and I did not know what awaited us. A special thanks to Laura Colvin for getting me a great deal on airfare to Atlanta on Delta and the return flight on United. Laura is the best travel agent in the business!! Atlanta was hot. I met Arica at the airport as she made the long seven hour drive from her home. It was such a pleasant experience to see her again after over two years of not. We spent Saturday afternoon and evening reconnecting as she drove to Athens. In the morning we would make the trip to Mountain City where as the Warrior Dash gang kept informing us in their frequent emails, "The greatest freaking weekend of our lives" awaited us. The great news was that Arica is a military veteran so whatever was out there on the course would be made easier through the calming influence of someone who had been through military training and experience. Since Arica had never been through Warrior Dash, she was nervous. What would be the most difficult event of the course? The one where we'd have to leap over fire, crawl through muddy waters under barbed wire, the log jumping? I tried losing myself in Arica's stories as I listened to her pretty voice, but in the back of my mind, I kept asking myself, what are we doing here? Over a month ago when Arica volunteered to guide in this event, she insisted we should not concern ourselves with how we perform, but focus on simply completing the course as best we could. After all, even if we came in last, we still would have come in and that beats never having the guts to try. At one point, I told Arica about an interview I read where David Mamet said that he believes the quality of writing has suffered because so called writers stopped living. He insisted that young people call themselves writers, but then sit in coffee houses all day drinking and pretending to write, but at the last minute they churn out the same type of script about an abusive mother or upbringing. The reason they can not create an original story is that they do not live and experience life. Mamet said the reason Hemingway and other great writers were so is that they lived then wrote what they lived. So to answer my question of what are we doing here? Arica said we're living. One thing I did not do on Saturday night was sleep. Too nervouse. Unfortunately, time does not stand still and soon we would have to face our destiny. Ready or not Warrior Dash is coming.

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