Wednesday, March 26, 2008


This link from the super awesome Mind of a Runner blog about a runner who was recently stabbed and mugged while running in the Park really got me thinking. Considering that 90% of my running is done in situations that are in the very least risky for a dude in tights, and possibly moronic, I’m probably a prime candidate to run into a stabby vagrant one dark night. But the more I think about it the more I’ve decided that I’m more concerned about alien abduction than being mugged while I’m out on a run.

Not to say that I’m not concerned at all about getting a shiv in my kidney, but it just seems like my quirky personality would make me a prime candidate for a good old fashion extraterrestrial exploratory probing, and that doesn’t sound like a good idea to anyone.

But as far as muggers go, runners in general seem like terrible targets. They’re sweaty, they smell bad, they’re moving around a lot, they’re typically not carrying anything of value. It’s like robbing a crackhead with an iPod. Obviously you don’t get into mugging because you have a history of making sound decisions, but you’d think even the novice mugger would be aiming a little higher than jacking a dude for a DriFit windbreaker.

But even if Mr Mugger decides that jacking a jogger is a good way of spending a Tuesday night, I’m still a terrible target. I mean it’s not like I’m just plodding along around Harlem Hill - on my typical training run I’m dropping 6:30 pace, and I just don’t see an urban camper with a ski mask being keen on cardio-vascular fitness. The thought actually makes me think of this commercial.

But say our mugger is jonesing to get his hands on my $12 Elite socks (just how I roll playa), and he’s decided it’s time for action, well I still run with a ninja-like alertness akin to an NHL goalie in the height of the play-off push. I’m constantly formulating what kind of roundhouse ninjitsu kill thrust I’m going to employee if confronted by a straggler looking to get in a donnybrook when I’m putting in a quick 4 at 4am. I hear a twig snap and I’m dropping the hammer like Michael Johnson at the ’96 Olympics.

So in conclusion, my real reaction to this article is tell the muggers, the vagrants, the crackheads, the vagabonds, and the all too common nogoodnicks to bring it. I’m out there, I’m running, and as long as you’re not one of the grays I’m ready, punk.


Laura said...

You know, I've often thought the same thing. I'm not nearly as fast as you, but I feel like I could run most muggers, as long as they don't have a gun or something.

Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to English said...

IMHO, here's the problem. Some runners have made themselves *great* targets. They're at least somewhat fatigued, and if they're listening to an ipod, they are a) vulnerable because they can't hear as well as their music-less counterparts and b) advertising that they're carrying something of value for a mugger to take. The mugger doesn't have to outrun you for 10k - he has to jump out from behind you and tackle you. If you're listening to music and are caught unaware, all the speed in the world isn't going to help. That said, a young, able-bodied, pre-military male getting mugged at 8:20p is particularly curious.

TheRunnerChick said...

Ahh.. thanks for the shout out!! (I know, I'm super quick on the uptake these days.) I still think your thoughts are totally twisted... amusing, but twisted! :)