Sunday, 10 August 2008

Woman problems

I went for an eight-mile run today as part of my training for the Leeds Half-Marathon in four weeks' time.

I haven't done a lot of training, if the truth be told. A combination of a new knee injury (in addition to my old knee injury), general lethargy and the arrival of a certain young man has ensured that my only goal is to finish.

But a problem has just arisen which threatens even this.

I've entered the race as a woman.

Filling in the online form a few months ago, I clearly remember putting a large "X" in the box marked "Male." Well, I think I did. Well, I must've done. Mustn't I? However, when I got the confirmation e-mail a few minutes after completing the registration process and paying my money, the "Male" had miraculously become "Female."

I didn't see this as a huge problem at the time. I mean, so long as I didn't actually win the woman's race (which clearly I wouldn't - I couldn't win the kids' fun run) then no-one would ever need to know. Surely.

But when I received my race pack earlier this weekend, it quickly became clear that things were not going to be that simple.

"Your running number is unique to you and cannot be passed to another entrant," said the cover letter. Yeah, yeah, yeah. "These are numbered 1-3500 for men and 4001 onwards for women." Okay, fair enough, but no-one will notice, thought I.

Then, in amongst the other bits and pieces, I found my actual number.

Yup, it's pink.

And you can be fairly sure the other male competitors won't have pink numbers. Bugger.

I've since fired off an e-mail to the race organisers, begging for mercy. But I read somewhere that the race is now full so the odds aren't on my side.

And there was I was hoping to make Jamie proud as I glided across the line like a haggered Sebastian Coe.

But there again, I suppose now's as good a time as any for him to discover his father's an idiot.


  1. Knut had a similar gender mix up when he received an invite for a cervical smear! Needless to say he politely declined the procedure :o) Great reading your blog, big hugs to you, Vanessa and Jamie, Holly x

  2. A more simpler way to get round the problem Barry, would be to fulfil all your fantasises, and do the run dressed as a woman, I'm sure Vanessa will be able to provide you with the appropriate attire!!!!!!!

    Anyway to be a bit more serious, which charity are you running it for, Seb?? let me know and we'll sponsor you, Love to you all Rachel Garry Mollie and Tom xx

  3. Hi Holly - I think Knut had a much rougher deal than me!

    Hope you're both well and please keep reading!


  4. Hi Rachel et al

    How did you know about my fantasy?! Word travels so fast!

    Thanks for the offer of sponsorship but, after my marathon exploits of earlier in the year, I've decided to leave my family and friends' pockets free from picketing for a little while.

    Hope you're all well.

    Barry X