Sunday, December 22, 2013

Another Marathon? Seriously?

Marathons suck. Hear me out on this one.

I work in New Orleans most of the week, and one of the things I hate about working in the city is having to pay for parking. The hotel I work at charges its employees six dollars a day for this privilege. Six bucks doesn't seem like much of an expense, but it adds up, and it's still money I could be spending on books or the Catching Fire Blu-ray when it comes out.

Note to Santa: Hint, hint. Nudge, nudge.

Another thing I hate about working in New Orleans? I'm directionally challenged. Driving to unfamiliar places is a nightmare for someone like me because I get so easily lost, especially a city like New Orleans where every other street seems to be one-way. Hell, I get lost on the Westbank, and I grew up there! If it weren't for the wonders of GPS, I'd never make it out of my driveway. Once I've driven to a particular destination a few-cough, hundred, sputter-times, I'm good. Once I learn the route, as long as I stick to the same roads every time, I won't need the GPS. Eventually. If, however, there's something like a marathon that closes most of the street I need to use to get to my destination like say, ALL OF FREAKIN' POYDRAS, then I have a problem.

The first time this happened to me, I was lucky. I had convinced my boyfriend to drop me off that day because it was his day off and I was tired and lazy and my boyfriend is easily plied with promises of sex. I don't think he will be so easy to ply in the future considering the annoyance that followed. Poydras was closed. All of it. He took another route, took some side streets, got me as close to the hotel as he could get, and let me out right in front of the building-which, by the way, I didn't realize I was standing in front of until he rolled down the window and pointed at it in exasperation, probably wishing he was dating a woman who came with a GPS device installed in her brain pan instead of Ryoga, the perpetually lost girl.

Those of you who watch anime will totally get that last reference.

That was the first time. It certainly wasn't the last. There seems to be a lot of marathons in New Orleans as of late. It's one of the reasons I leave for work early. That, and I'm paranoid I'm going to be held up by Superdome traffic or abducted by aliens or sasquatch or some damn thing. I try to keep myself informed about events in the area, but yesterday, I was caught off guard when I came to the Poydras exit to find it blocked by police cars. I had forgotten to watch the news that morning. If I had, I would have know that the entire street was closed all the way up to Magazine due to the Run For the Goal Line 5K Run. Sigh.

I drove around blindly, searching for any street that would get me close to my destination, hampered by a GPS constantly trying to get me to that destination via my usual route-did I mention I'm technologically challenged? Yes. I am chock full of irritating quirks of uselessness. I finally got fed up when I became trapped on a one-way street by a streetcar that couldn't move because it too was blocked by parade barriers. Luckily, there was a pay-for-parking lot right next to me. It was like they KNEW! Irritated, I paid the fifteen bucks to park in the lot, slammed my door closed, and got out to trek the seven blocks it would take to get to work, cursing under my breath and glaring at the runners as I went. I wasn't alone. There were others just like me spitting and cursing and glaring as they went by while those marathon jerks jaunted down the street, happy as sweaty clams.

As I plodded along, it occurred to me there had to be some sinister purpose behind all this running. Perhaps the participants are all a part of some dastardly plot to take over the city using EMP's to make our cars useless hunks of metal while we non-runners walk around in a confused daze without transportation or a means of escape. Easy targets. Don't think I don't know what you're up to, marathon runners! I'm wise to you now.

Beware: The Enemy!

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