The End of My Career

In writing this I’m going to hold the assumption that all my readers are aware of certain events in the Canary Islands this past weekend. If you’re not, I suggest leaving this web page immediately. The following article will probably offend your sensibilities and strand your sanity on a desert island off the coast of Africa, but definitely not attached to Africa in any way, culturally or geologically.

I’ve received several bits of good advice over the past few days, but far and away the best I’ve gotten is the suggestion to hire an agent. But not just any agent (or any one agent) – a bubbly, busty coed agent. You know, the kind who will organize my appearances while reclining on top of a piano in a low-cut skirt, or hand me flowers when I finish races ahead of barely-conscious competitors. Fortunately, I have this covered already with Reese Ruland’s Quality Crewing Company, who has been handling my PR for several months now and is responsible for catapulting me into international scandal. My career has never been more incomprehensible.

You’re probably wondering about my interpretation of European racing versus American racing. Well, once I get my hearing back I’ll try to come up with a cohesive answer. They love ultrarunning over here – it’s awesome. To race at that level of competition with that kind of intense media focus on the runners was invigorating. The energy and excitement surrounding this race really made it something special, and I’m proud to have been able to experience both an outstandingly beautiful course and play my part in an exciting race among the best in the sport. At the same time, I’ll be glad to return to the anonymity of Colorado. Both places have their merits and I’m lucky to experience them both.

This weekend I’ll be competing in the Zegama-Aizkorri marathon in the Basque country of Spain with many of the same competitors. Fortunately, I hear they grow lots of flowers in that area. According to sources who wished to remain anonymous (I made them up), all of Europe will be cheering us on. For my part, I intend to fully utilize every aid station, Slow Aaron style, and really get my mid-race baguette-and-pasta on, with a side of sparkling water. Because it’s not just running – it’s eating too. And if it’s not Shot Blok lasagna smothered in Clif Shots, it better be salami and cheese with olives. This race is also a great opportunity to try out the new rum and whiskey Clif Shots – inspired by literal interpretations everywhere. If you would like to try them out yourself, please get in touch with my agent. She’ll most likely be playing beach volleyball with her attractive and equally scantily-clad college interns.

There are 37 comments

  1. Derek

    I actually thought this article was funny. I love that he wants to be light-hearted and sarcastic. Great article, Dakota!

  2. FastED

    If you're gonna go "slow Aaron" style then why not try "PBR JT" style mid race.

    BTW – While you were galavanting through the Canary Islands, most of us local (anonymous) Colorado folks ran Quad Rock in the Fort. Transvulcania has nothing on Lory State Park. People were lining the edges of Tower road like the Col du Tourmalet in the TdF.

    See you in the San Juans Young Money!

  3. Reese

    Dakota- Thanks for the shameless plug for my Crewing Company. Though, if you keep up with scandals, writing controversial pieces and the like- its going to be hard to take on more clients. You've got our hands full right now. Though we do have some interesting and earth shattering plans that will rock the ultra community. We will discuss more when you return to the states. In the mean time- (and speaking solely as your PR agent) I recommend you buy 'shutter' style glasses (think Kanye West) it will shy rocket your status into complete a-hole/d-bag realm. Think about dipping your shoes in gold and throwing them into the crowds for the next race. lastly- start signing autographs for everyone. Even if they don't ask for it.

  4. Trail Clown

    I think I will retire. There is no place for me now. This new Trail Clown is both funny and fast. The old Trail Clown was just…well, neither, actually. Plus my real name is not even close to being as cool as "Dakota Jones". This is a sad day for this old Clown. But a good day for ultrarunning as a whole!

  5. Fernando N. Baeza

    Dakota is truly unique individual, but at the same time, demonstrates he is just like one of us. His humility should humble the rest of us, hes being sarcastic guys. C'mon, lets rally for the guy! Dakota, I personally apologize for the "ocassional" crude comments made, most of us are not that way! Go tear it up at Zegama, we will try to be there, each one of us… with rose petals, awaiting your arrival! Hehe

  6. Dominic

    Sarcasm was never your strong point.

    When you do sign autographs, give people unique versions of yourself like "Dakota Rex", "Dakota Sex", "South Dakota", "North Dakota", "Dakota Dakota", "Dakotrail", "Dakota Rails", or "let's —- in 20"

  7. Bryon Powell

    Hey Guys,

    I really hate to edit or remove comments, but this conversation got out of hand. Please speak to each other with the respect you would use in speaking with them face-to-face on the trail in a personable manner. All conversations can be carried on with civility. I'm going to demand that here on iRunFar.

    Disagreement is 100% ok. Not liking an article is fine. But please treat each other with respect and, if you feel the need to leave a negative comment, please do so without being unconstructively negative with regard to iRunFar's authors, commentors, and readers.



  8. NGtrailrunner

    Good stuff Dakota! Congrats on an awesome race and for keeping it all in perspective. Keep rolling young money…

  9. Mark

    So, just to bring some perspective here from a European. I say this because Dakota expressed some wariness of the whole marketing, hype, etc.

    I think that a lot of what is going on in terms of alleged hype, fame, etc is in Dakota's head or in the head of whoever the top people/winner's are. Why? Well, because as much as we want to secretly believe the opposite, trail running, heck even main stream marathon running for that matte is pretty niche and obscure.

    Why are there so many people in those little mountain towns cheering the runners? Because its fun, something, a large event is happening. It could be a cycling event, the same people would stand and cheer. We have those events in the little mountain towns all the time and its a chance for people to come out, that is all. Do you really think most of these folks know even the top runners? They may know about their local hero but that's about it.

    In short all the hype you are experiencing is from your perspective, you don't have to be afraid of it. If I were a really established plumber, I would probably feel some of this attention as well, if I were to say win an award and suddenly had to double the size of my business. What you are experiencing is success, that is all. Sure with athletes such as you, there is specialist media and web sites covering you, plumbers don't have that, however one doesn't need to worry about Brad Pitt level of fame either.

    As Charlie Chaplin said to Albert Einstein when the crowds were cheering them like crazy at an event: "It means absolutely nothing." What he meant was all that cheering wasn't about the two men and certainly not about them as people, it was about the people cheering, it was about the crowd itself more than anything.

    Just wanted to give some perspective.

  10. Mark

    Just re-read my post and found it a bit too negative. Calling trail running or marathoning niche and obscure? That's degrading a sport that I love! Heck, I'm on this here website often and love what is going on.

  11. Ted

    Not a trail/ultra-runner (just a regular marathon chump, and happy to be – you guys and gals with your distances are nuts), but enjoy trail/ultra-runners blogs and comments as the humor and sarcasm fits me well. And find this Dakota character's articles and blog posts bitingly funny. And it makes the races all the more enjoyable to read about when you get entertaining recaps and preludes from participants. Also it is good to see that he has apparently mentally and emotionally recovered from the trouncing it looked as though he was administered in some Beer Mile goofball race a while back.

  12. Coach Weber

    At the end of the day (or the next day for some of us :-), it's truly 'just' running … having a sense of humour and seeing that our accomplishments (or DNFs for that matter) are so transitory makes it all the more meaningful and interesting.

    Enjoy the day!


  13. dogrunner

    Late (again) to the party, but that was really funny, as usual. It isn't just running… it's running and entertainment :)

  14. Marcus

    The comments were removed but it is sad to see that some people didn't get the article. Dakota, keep being Dakota… most of us get your writing and I find it funny and a nice way to brighten my day.

  15. Anonymous

    "hand me flowers when I finish races ahead of barely-conscious competitors".

    You will have a good taste of humility in Zegama!!

    Imagine 100+ spectators not so happy about your presence ?

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