I'll admit that I'm not a big fan of Barry's, but I did grow up in the Bay Area. One of my most cherished posessions is a baseball that my father got from a San Francisco game back when Willy Mays and McCovey were playing. Whether he juiced or not, he got the fans attention and gave them something too look forward to. That he did it on his home turf makes it special to his devout fans.
What made this hard on me was that for the first time in a long while, I missed Bob. It hit me the morning after that I couldn't call him to talk about it. That made me sad. My father and I rarely saw things eye to eye, but when it came to sports, it was the one thing that we shared similar views. We liked the old school approach. You play for the love of the game, you play for the fans, you play because you can.
In his own way, my father was proud of the things that I did. Rarely did he tell me that he was proud of the accomplishments, but he used to boast about it to his freinds at the pub. What can you expect from an old, stubborn Irishman. When I run the Portland Marathon this fall, I'm running not just for me, I'm running for him. For the love of a father who was proud in his own way. For the man who taught me about sportsmanship, about doing what was right, even if I didn't agree with it.
Running isn't about the victory. It's about giving it your best shot, putting your best foot forward. At the end of the day, I can look back and know that I did my best, regardless of the final time.