Two days ago I was standing in Central Park with Honey, packed in like sardines with 5,000 of our closest friends waiting for a NYRR race to start. In the midst of the jumping to stay loose, the stretching, the watch setting, barely anyone noticed as the national anthem was introduced. Back in the middle of the pack as we were we could hardly hear the announcer over one another’s chatter. But then those familiar marching notes strike and the angelic vocal chords of….someone…resounded: “O-o say! Can you see…”
And nothing else much changed. The jumpers kept jumping, the chatters kept chatting, nobody took off a hat or stopped poking at a phone and someone’s watch was beeping as he clicked through settings. I couldn’t help it. I started to giggle when I noticed the contrast between the pageantry of the race and the casual attitude of the runners. Honey and I looked at each other and wondered out loud about the whole scene.
So this week we want to know what you do while the national anthem plays on the starting line. Do you always stop with your prerace nervous routine to place your hand over your heart and sing along or do you continue on with getting yourself race ready? What do others around you do? Do you think the national anthem should always be sung or played before a race, or do you not care one way or the other?
As always we’ll take your answers in the comments!