[Updated: I canceled. Given the advice I received from some smart people (SB said, “From lessons learned, unless you compete for the Olympic Games, I would cancel, especially if you know you are not going to finish. However it could be just a minor ache.”) and because I would give the same advise were I asked.) Factored in the hassle of getting my number tomorrow and getting to the start, the danger of the knee going early, the loss of the chance to watch the race, and the loss of an automatic for 2010.]

I admit it. I like the idea of a three-digit number. My plan: To enjoy running the first part of the race, particularly the crowd in Brooklyn, not worrying about anything except running relaxed, particularly given the complete absence of mileage in my legs. So my goal was to have fun and make it into Manhattan.

Alas, yesterday I tried to run through an ache in my left knee. Bothered me early, but then was gone. It has since been aching. Normally I would just take a couple of days off and get back. Now, however, its impact on Sunday looms large.

Add to that a change in NYRR policy. For guaranteed entry into the marathon, the HM-qualifier must be run by Jan. 31, instead of by May 1 as in years past. Since I haven’t run an HM since 2007, largely because of injuries, I don’t have a time, although the standard is pretty soft for 50+ (1:40). If I cancel the Marathon, I have my 2010 spot covered. Still, I figure getting the qualifier in January in the Manhattan HM will be pretty easy, assuming I can run.

So as of Thursday night, the question is whether to cancel. I can do it as long as I send something post-marked by October 31, i.e., Saturday. This has been aggravating/agitating me. I realize that there’s a good chance that the pain is psychosomatic.

A pimp’s convention?