First of all, the books: I had to run errands in town today, and since I had a little time, I decided to wander into one of the several used bookstores in my town. This particular one has a lot of really cheap slightly damaged and remaindered books for sale; they had a bunch for only $1, so I spent quite a bit of time looking through those. Unfortunately, most of them weren’t the kind of book I wanted to read, but I did find two.
I came home with Elaine Scarry’s book Resisting Representation; since I enjoyed her book On Beauty and Being Just so much last summer, I snapped it up. This one is about “the complicated problems of representation in diverse literary and cultural genres,” according to Amazon. I also found a small collection of Katherine Mansfield’s stories called The Garden Party and other Stories. I read good things about her in Francine Prose’s book, and have heard so much about her because of Virginia Woolf, and I enjoyed “At the Bay,” which I read for A Curious Singularity, so I’m happy about this one.
But on to the race. Today wasn’t so good. I dropped out somewhere around lap 15 or 16 out of 25, although I was dropping out in good company; Hobgoblin and a couple other teammates didn’t make it to the end either. Today’s race was a points race, which means that instead of the usual format, where whoever crosses the finish line on the last lap wins, there are laps designated as points laps. This means that whoever wins those laps (or the top 2 people or 5 people or whatever the race organizer decides) gets points, and the person with the most points from all the points laps wins. What that means is that every lap that can earn somebody points is a sprint, so it can be a lot of hard work.
And the way it worked today is that laps 14-25 were all points laps, so every single one was a sprint. It was too fast for me. It’s not so bad if there are breaks between the points laps so everybody can have time to recover, but with no break, it was just too much. Oh, well — there’s always next time.