It’s not my fault. I was driving in Brooklyn, on Eastern Parkway as I recall, when I heard Brenn Jones’s description of his NYC HM on his (and Gregg Lamos-Stein’s) most excellent podcast Cloud259. He said matter-of-factly that he stood freezing in the corral for 30 minutes before the start of the race and that it took a few miles for his feet to thaw.

Having suffered similarly in NYRR races, I got to thinking. Why did the runners have to be in their corrals 30 minutes beforehand? I’ve been puzzled by the shorter periods in other races, and that is a major factor in my not doing NYRR races anymore. I don’t understand why I have to be standing for 15 minutes before the start of a 4-miler. Not to say that there’s no reason. I don’t understand.

So I posted on NYRR’s Facebook page. So as not to belabor things, it was suggested that I write to NYRR and, you know, ask. So I did and after receiving no response asked why I hadn’t received a response to my prior inquiry. And no response to that.

So I posted a follow-up on Facebook saying among other things, that I hadn’t gotten a a response from NYRR. To which I got no response from NYRR.

Then someone named Andy Greenblatt, who I believe is a woman, posted:

OMG- give up this ridiculous question. Why? because 15000 persons takes awhile to get lined up. DUH….. You don’t run NYRR events (As you have posted before) and are not a member, so stop asking just to get a reply.

Which got me thinking. And led to this response:

I guess if the runners and NYRR don’t care, I shouldn’t. If the runners and NYRR don’t care that, say, the Scotland course was short, why should I?

But I think the runners do care. Most of those I know, though, think that NYRR doesn’t care about them at all. I”m talking people always in the hunt for awards and middle-of-the-packers. As to the issue-at-hand, I would think that even the NYRR’s greatest sycophant at the NYC HM wondered, if only for a fleeting moment, why she had to be there so early.

I wanted to give NYRR the opportunity to explain. There may be a perfectly-good explanation. It may be what you say. I don’t know. I don’t know the mechanics of getting 15,000 into corrals. I don’t know how many corrals there were.

I think NYRR does care about runners. It is consistently awful, though, in letting them know it.

I try, I really try to help NYRR. Smoke-signals? Which is pretty much all I have to say on that.

[edited to add: I noticed a few weeks back that NYRR responded to complaints that one had to go to Brooklyn to pick up number for the Brooklyn Half — and no race-day pick-up — that it was looking into additional pick-up locations. I didn’t follow what happened but Eric Freedman Goldhagen posted this on NYRR’s FB Page: “NYRR compounded this problem by holding back any details [about pick-up locations] until an hour or so before registration started. It got even more confused because NYRR then stated that they were considering having a Manhattan pickup option, and without even saying ‘we looked into it and it just won’t work’ they simply announced the details of the pickup expo“, i.e., only in Brooklyn (emph. added).]