Friday, March 18, 2011

JJ Playing Doctor

The Borneo International Marathon will be on the 1st of May, which is just a few weeks from now. For those running the full course, i.e. 42km race, it is becoming increasingly important not to miss training for the remaining weeks leading up to the event. It may be OK to miss a run or two during the weekdays, but not the long run over the weekends. However, I try my best to keep to the 3 weekday runs and 1 long weekend runs as much as I can.

Unfortunately, this lately the weather hasn't been very conducive for marathon training—it's always raining in the evenings. So one would need to have a Plan B for the training. In my case, if it's raining heavily, I would force myself to the gym and do my 10km runs on the treadmill. But if it's just a light drizzle, I would still go to the track to run. I prefer the track because running on the treadmill is just too boring.

Last week, there was a massive earthquake in Japan which triggered a horrible tsunami; and hard upon that, the nation is now struggling to prevent a nuclear catastrophe. A nuclear power plant's cooling system had been crippled in the earthquake, thus resulting in overheating. Leakages had been reported, and spikes in radioactive levels were detected in the atmosphere. Conflicting reports suggest that the radioactive levels may or may not be dangerous to humans. But to be safe, residents from the surrounding areas have been evacuated by the hundreds of thousands.

Thousands of miles away in the "Land Below The Wind", a number of idiots decided to compose a hoax via text messages for the fun of it. I haven't seen the message myself, but a fair number of my friends have received it. I was told that we are to stay indoors, especially when it's raining, because the raindrops from the sky can capture the radioactive particles in the atmosphere, thus bringing them down to the ground.

Well, yesterday evening, although it was cloudy, it was not raining. So after two days running on a treadmill, I was very happy to run on the track again. Little did I know that I would get a lecture from JJ when I arrived home after the run.

"Dad, did you run in the rain?", she asked me impatiently.

"Well, it wasn't raining this evening, Jay, perhaps just a few drops from the light drizzle," I replied, adding, "but that's hardly anything. I was all wet from my sweat rather than the raindrops."

"But, dad, you're not supposed to run in the rain!", suddenly she became excited. "The rain is poisonous and will make all your hair drop off your head, and won't grow back for a very, very long time to come!"

"Oh is that so, Jay?", I said. I knew there was a special reason why those girls were overdoing it when they did their stretching—I thought they raised their arms a tad too high, thus exposing their armpits to the sky.

I turned to JJ and asked, "Well, how did you know all this, Jay?"

She explained that Aunty Jackie told mommy about the poisonous rain based on the text message which was forwarded from Uncle Charles. And Uncle Charles in turn received that forwarded text message from another friend.

It reminded me of the time when, many years ago, Mia, upon the recommendation from a doctor, took the birth control pills, and her mom tried very hard to play doctor by saying that those pills were poisonous and would "spoil her body" somehow. She went on to recommend the "withdrawal method" of birth control. But no, thankfully, she did not demonstrate the method to us. I would probably have lost my appetite for weeks if she did.

Anyway, I asked JJ the same question I told Mia to ask her mom. I said, "Is Aunty Jackie a doctor?"

She frown and said, "Well, no, she's not. But she received that SMS from Uncle Charles."

I said, "OK, is Uncle Charles a doctor?"

"Ummm, no, he's not... but..."

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