Inside Texas Running - The Private Thoughts of a Non-Runner

I think all of us can relate to "being in the zone", "hitting the wall", "going on auto-pilot" or "completely losing consciousness and drooling all over the front of your shirt". Whatever you wish to call it, it's the time that you become one with your activity, when you reach that vaunted higher plane. I'm certain that the Hindus and Zen Buddhists have fancy names and beautifully touching stories for it, but it all amounts to being at the top of your game.

And as my running pals will freely admit after sixteen shots of Aquavit and being sat on by a large, sweaty Finnish woman, those special moments can also open the dark recesses of your brain and unleash some strange and random thoughts.

To that end, and in the interest of science, I decided to channel my innermost… what the psychologists call…crap. And what better time to let stream of consciousness brainwaves reach the page than the moment each year when I reach my true peak: The frenzied rush of channel surfing that takes place among Bowl game and NFL final weekend nirvana. So I strapped myself into my 1983 version of Corel Think N Draw. Let's see what's on my mind, shall we?

"What is with these graphics and sound effects? It's a football game, for crying out loud. If I wanted to watch a music video, I'd… No, if I ever thought I wanted to watch a music video, I'd just hang myself from the shower rod…. I've been watching football for seven days. I should do some exercise….Okay, the first 26 times the guy put on eight suits of clothes to go on his business trip, it was kinda funny. Get a new commercial. But that's good where you can't bend over to kiss your wife …"

"How do some of these announcers keep jobs? Shouldn't somebody have backed their Buick over Brent Musburger by now?... Is that a zit or a mole? I never noticed that before. Oww! …. Florida State and West Virginia? Booorrrriiiing! Maybe I have time to clean the garage. That would work up a sweat… Wow that Michigan kicker has a huge head… "
"Karen Rosen. What ever happened to her? Man, she was hot. I loved that thing she could do with her left leg… How does that pinky toenail get so much thicker than the other ones? I mean it's so small. You'd think it'd be thinner… Inagoddadavidababy… Jeez, how much money does David Spade need?... "

"There is no way he was in bounds. He did not get a foot down. Ooooh. I guess he did… Shut up, Musburger! You have got to be the most annoying man on Earth…. Whose idea was it to buy yellow mouth guards? Those are really unflattering…. Hey! Get your dog out of my yard! This is not a park! Hey! You're gonna pick that up, aren't you?!?! … "

"Why is my chin so big? I need to go workout… Bite me, Martz. Your team is not even .500. What are you so smug about?... I know you need to go outside. Just lie down till a commercial. Here, catch the rope. Catch the rope. … Tuna. With pepper jack cheese and onions… "

"I wonder what would happen if you tied Louie Anderson to Brent Musburger's head and fed him nothing but bran flakes and Dr. Pepper… A few five pound curls while I'm watching TV. See I'm not lazy. All right! Time out. I need Tostitos… Damn it, Philadelphia. If you'd even tried to lift a finger last week, I wouldn't have to worry about the Rams…"

"You are kidding me. He missed the kick. Put the grocery sacks back on our heads. We are never going to the playoffs again…. Droughns. What kind of name is that? … Why does this one stupid hair keep growing back? Is that some radioactive follicle or something? People have got to be staring at that. You know, Mrs. Coats in second grade had stray hairs growing all over the place. And she smelled funny. Maybe that's why she was such a worthless … Get him! Make a tackle! Don't just let him run! Come on!... Man, cabbage really causes gas, huh?.... "

"What if you tied Musburger's feet to a ski rope and pulled him through cold, choppy waters behind twin Evinrudes? With no pants…. That actress is gorgeous. Get the referee off the screen and show her again. Not the Bud Light guy. The brunette…. Woooo. Got to ease up on the cabbage…"

And this seems like an ideal time to turn the machine off. I must say I think we learned a great deal from this experiment, though I'm not sure what it was. It might be that when adrenalin and endorphins start flowing, dark corners of your brain open up like the bottom of Hoover Dam. Or it could be that we found out exactly how Andy Rooney writes those pieces for 60 minutes. Then again, maybe it has something to do with Beano.