The chief enemy of creativity... is "good" sense. ~Pablo Picasso

Rainbows and Striped Socks

“Ann, the world isn’t all rainbows and striped socks...”
I furrowed my brow. Of course the world isn’t all rainbows and striped socks. 
I’ve suffered through tax season, and caucus raucous, been delayed at airports for days and gotten teary phone calls from parents diagnosed with cancer. 
I traded in my SUV for a hybrid when gas hit $5 a gallon and been glued to the TV as the severity and consequences of natural disasters and corporate scandals rocked the world. 
Just recently I read in dismay, the treatment of POW’s in Japan during WWII, especially one Louis Zamperini.
But I’ve also been the recipient of a much needed refund check, at the right time. The appreciation that someone else is willing to run for public office, because I’m sure not. 
A few of those delayed flights resulted in meeting some of my closest friends and one influential Southwest employee who was able to bring Lorna Doones back...  The “cancer card”, well just ask my dad who is now acutely aware and actively embracing “eating healthy” - a realization only the diagnosis of cancer could provide him. 
That hybrid not only saved me money in gas, but fit so much better in those tiny little Southern California parking spaces. Those natural disasters and corporate scandals helped put in check my annoyance with a little “May gray” and a few reminders as I entered the working world... about making a “good” living - as in quality not quantity. 
And Louis Zamperini??? I can’t tell you how many conversations just the mention of his name or the book about him, Unbroken, has facilitated. 
And I can promise you that today isn’t anything like liberation from a POW camp, or the checkup ensuring the cancer hasn’t returned...
Today is the day. The year is up. The imaginary locks at Target, and online shopping carts have been removed. It’s kind of like Black Friday... or should I say Neon Friday in my case... but maybe you should know something about Black Friday. My mother goes to bed early and sets an alarm... I furrow my brow and squint my eyes as she calls me from inside the chaos ridden stores. 
I will be purchasing conditioner, lotion, mascara and out of pure symbolism... a new pair of neon socks... But that’s because this weekend marks the beginning of a “job” where for a few hours in the early Sunday morning hours - my world really is all rainbows and striped socks, and always "something new"...

Swarms of colored jerseys supporting various causes cheer at the top of their lungs. Parents and children stand side by side and pat each other on the back, people dressed as crayons, super hero’s, Gumby, Elvis, Mickey and Minnie... And couples who have found running and training has helped them with “empty nest” syndrome, and groups of friends who have made t-shirts and trained together and can’t wait to cross this off their bucket lists. A rainbow of runners starts my day and the last finisher and the dedicated supporters stay until the end as we reach that pot of gold at the finish line... it never get's "old"... does that mean it's "new"?
The Rock n Roll Marathon was born in San Diego 15 years ago. The idea of music and running took off and now with almost 30 events this year they’ve so graciously allowed me and my striped socks and high fiving, dancing ways to join in the fun. As I sit here writing this I can promise you I still have too many clothes. I’ve given away multiple pairs of shoes and jackets and various other pieces but I still have too much. And I didn’t even get through all the awful lotions because sometimes I would just forgo lotion all together... I hated the smells that badly. This year was a great way to re-form an “old” habit. But now that I’ve gotten this far, it seems silly to jump back on the bandwagon, completely. 
I’ll actually be sewing on my flight to San Diego. I’ve taken two pairs of old Umbro shorts, cut them apart and will be making a skirt for the Rock n Roll race this weekend. I suppose I could have stopped by a store to see what I could buy, but what’s the fun in explaining that when people start asking :)
I’m having too much fun “creating” and “building” and of course the storytelling of the adventures... and conversations that take place during the adventure. Thanks to my ADHD brain, my mind is always running away from me so I’m sure I’ll have plenty more “projects”. 
This summer I’ll be embarking on not one but two week long bike trips... and I’m not even that big of a biker. Yesterday I fell off my bike at the top of a mountain thanks to my jello legs... As I sat there, pulling myself together it dawned on me... maybe I should try no swearing for a year... especially during biking weeks :) 
My goal this year is to try and keep an eye out for the rainbow even when the clouds are  thick, and pull up those striped socks and make my own if I have to. 

I guess maybe starting today... it will be a year of seeing something "new" everyday.



  1. I'll have you know that was one of the first things I thought about as I woke up and started packing today. "Ann's year is up. Wonder what she'll buy first?"

    See you in SD :)

  2. Good job! Besides the IA bike ride, what else are you doing?

  3. Congrats! I have really enjoyed following your story :)