People Watching > Exercise in Central Park

In a perfect world, people-watching would be a competitive sport. Who doesn’t love people-watching? It’s part of the fun of going to Disneyland, the mall, sporting events, airports…any public place.

Central Park has been a great people-watching destination for decades, and during my run in the park this evening, I truly came to understand why. (Although my high school cross-country coach coach wouldn’t have called it a “run” if he had seen how much walking was involved toward the end.)

See, in Central Park, you not only witness the full spectrum of humanity – ranging from people who love running above all else to people like me people who are struggling just to take the next step – you also get to see what college sports teams they support.

Gratuitous LaMichael James photos seem to be a recurring theme on my blog.

My theory is that people have so many leftover t-shirts from college that those shirts naturally transition from everyday wear to workout clothes. During my run, I saw people repping Michigan, Harvard, UCLA, Wellesley and Tennessee, among others.

I was sporting a kelly green t-shirt with “Ducks” written across the front. Any knowledgeable college sports fan could decipher what that means. Few people probably thought twice about my shirt, but I know one person did.

In a great Pac-10 triumph, I ran past a guy wearing a white shirt with a red and yellow warrior image that had “Trojans” written across the front. Obviously a USC fan. I’m probably building up the moment in my mind, but the guy TOTALLY looked at me with an expression that read, “Darn you, Duck fan, whose team has absolutely crushed us the past two years.” In my head, the split-second encounter could not have been greater had I run past Lane Kiffin himself.

All that to say, people watching is great. If anything, it confirms that you’re not the craziest person or slowest runner or only Pac-10 football fan out there.

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