This was a short, exhilarating, heart pounding run. But first, ever watch Star Trek? From its start in the 1960’s as a campy TV series to its glitzy big screen movies, such as 2016’s Beyond, Star Trek has moved words into the general lexicon that just weren’t there previously; just look at “Beam me up” and “warp-speed”.
With those random thoughts bouncing around my head, I set out to join the Steel City Road Runners for their Saturday run. I was jogging through the Upper Hill, trying to warm up. The Upper Hill is a part of the Hill District neighborhood. The Hill District stretches from Downtown to Oakland. The Upper Hill is a small round area on the crest of hill right above North Oakland, the University of Pittsburgh, and above the Bloomfield Bridge. The streets are mostly wide open affairs, going up and down the steep hillsides. It is an area with a bad reputation (perhaps deserved, perhaps racism) and I am somewhat vigilant as I run along. As with all of the Hill District, the housing stock varies. There are boarded up brown brick row houses. There are bright, well-kept brick homes. There are new townhouses rising three stories and freshly painted.
Running past one of these new townhouses, thinking “This looks nice”, I hear the muffled barking of a dog. No worries, inside dog. Nonetheless, I look around hoping to see the mutt in a window. Then, I hear the a garage door rattling open and see the beige door slowly rise. Now, the barking is louder and there it is! A big brown dog of uncertain breed is galloping at me, trailing a leash. Warp Speed 1 Sulu! I take off. Usually if I pass the dog’s territory, it’ll stop. But no, wolf-spawn is still chasing me. Warp Speed 10! I gave it my all. Then with Fido a few yards away, he gives up. He must have finally heard his Master’s voice calling him back. Whew! That was the fastest 100 yards I’ve run in a long time, a 5 min/mile pace.
Sometimes you just need motivation.