Yesterday I went for a three mile run, the first in several months (on a related note, I’m delighted to finally be experiencing warmer temperatures here in my new hometown: it makes the idea of exploring neighborhoods so much more inviting).
While rounding the mile long loop about Cheesman park, I crossed paths with another runner going the opposite direction, and we exchanged the runner’s nod. You know the one: that quick bout of eye contact and the nod that follows when you get about 4 feet away. That mutual, oft simultaneous gesture that in an instant conveys a mutual respect for the other’s physical prowess and hardness of core.
It’s damn near an act of solidarity. One that says in an instant “hey, I know we could be both be sitting at home watching Family Guy reruns on Hulu right now like so many in our fair city currently are, but we, we are up to something greater“. The whole thing would be smug if it were spoken, but remains in check as a shared, silent gesture.
It’s the eye-contact equivalent to giving another the respect knuckles, which you would, but doing so would necessarily mess up your stride. It’s a celebration of human achievement.
At least that’s what I make it mean.
I love the runner’s nod.