Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Should the Show Really Go On?

That is the question I am struggling with and it seems that I am not the only one. 

I'm referring of course to the NYC Marathon that I'm supposed to run this Sunday.  I have been glued to twitter and various news sites as well as the official ING New York Marathon site and the NYRR site, looking for some kind of answer as to exactly what is going on.  It's still a little unclear although the latest reports suggest that it will go ahead as scheduled. What is clear is the fact that many folks are struggling with the whole idea of hosting such a huge event mere days after the biggest natural disaster they've seen in a long time. 

The selfish part of me hopes that the show does go on.  I've paid all sorts of money to be there and I've booked the time off.  If I cancel things now, there is a good chance I will lose pretty much everything I've laid out dollar wise.  I will lose my $357 entry fee but I am guaranteed a spot in next years race.  I will then have to pay another entry fee.  I realize that is a small price to pay compared to all the folks affected by Sandy but it is something to consider.   I am not the only one in this boat.  There are an estimated 20,000 runners that come from out of town or overseas.

On the flip side, it seems so trivial to hold an event like this when there are thousands of people that need help.  They need basic things like food and shelter.  The marathon will take away the ability to provide those resources.  It will close roads and prohibit people from perhaps getting more food and water.  Or even getting to a place that actually has power.  How is that fair to the residents of New York and surrounding areas?  It's not.  Relief efforts should be focused on getting the city back up and running and helping the locals get back on their feet.  

All that being said, I am still going to make my way to the Big Apple in case the show does go on.  If it doesn't, well then it doesn't.  There is always next year.  Either way I will be in New York on Sunday.  If the race happens, I'll pin on bib number 13117 and be ready to face the day, whatever it may bring.  If I'm not running, I will do my best to spend my tourist dollars and give what I can back to into the economy. 

What are your thoughts on this situation?

Would you cancel or would you go?
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