On St. Patrick's Day weekend — a dreary one, weatherwise, in Des Moines — I arrived at work Saturday to find my friend Annah in a hoodie, jeans and Birkenstocks.
When I applauded her courage/foolhardiness/hardy Michigan blood for wearing sandals, she shrugged off the praise.
"When the sandals come out, they're out. There's no going back," she said firmly. (We'd had at least one pleasant day earlier that week.)
I thought of that determination Monday as I did post-half-marathon laundry. All of my running clothes needed washing, but I had thought that some of the cold-weather gear might stay clean for a while.
The Midwest has something else in mind, I see, but I'm drawing inspiration from Annah as I write this: The spring gear is out, and it's staying out. I refuse to dirty all of my winter gear again.
This declaration, I admit, is somewhat less brave considering that I'm coming off a half marathon and thus can keep winter gear clean by "recuperating," i.e., not running.
It's also less dramatic when you realize that only two days are forecast to be below 50 degrees, which is when I begin thinking about covering more skin.
Nevertheless, I don't want to grow moss — so if you see a shorts-and-T-shirt-clad runner shivering at a stoplight this week, don't pity her. Salute her.