Philadelphia [earlier]

I’m never drinking again, 2019 edition.

I swear it for real then as I run up to the front of the class. 

Maybe 30 minutes pre-stair climb:

I’m standing up front about to suffer the consequences of my own actions and I’m tasked with doing roll call. No sweat. Only 110 people to run though and a bunch of names. That was pretty fun. I enjoyed being up front and yelling names out.  I crushed most of those names and only got held up on one. The biggest issue is I was getting dry mouth. Anyway, that was as good as the night was getting for me – not butchering names. Or words (use your words damn it). If you’re going to mispronounce something, mispronounce the shit out of it with confidence. I peaked early…late.

Not butchering names

This is a great night. I show up late, don’t get yelled at, and I get to talk instead of doing PT in front of the class.

Roll call is the fun part of events ’cause you get to see your peeps or hear their names and that’s how you know you’re going to have a bad time. Or at least people who are Facebook famous (it’s a thing, good or bad thanks JB). You don’t see these peeps during the good times. Honest. Chicken or egg thing. Do the bad times come before these friends show up or do the friends show up and does that cause the bad times to happen?

Nothing but good times here.

Quick run down since this post has been baking in the oven since November – PT on the steps, welcome party, walked around the Schuylkill River, got in the river (did a pushup, came out, penguin huddled for five or ten glorious minutes), then back to start point at 0600. It got cold AF. Handley mentioned standing in front of the museum at that time was colder than being in/out of the river. I love being downtown in a city because chances are there is a giant clock that’s visible everywhere. It’s at the moment you realize how slow time can move when you’re wanting the event to end. Or maybe it’s moving too fast and I’m just concentrating on it too long. Good point – GORUCK and mindfulness go hand in hand. Or perhaps that’s just suffering? You can’t be more in the moment when you’re focusing on carrying a heavy log and all you can think about is the next step, next step, next step.

Back to the penguin huddle. I’ve done it fully clothed and in Silkies- getting down to your Silkies is seriously that much better. It was a fantastic way to get warm.

Second penguin huddle.

I met some great GRTs on this night and I probably met some mediocre ones (myself First of House Mediocre). But my new buddy Ray is cool. He started GORUCK a week before I did and that was cool. This is way back when GORUCK got easy (allegedly). I found this out later when we were joined at the hip. I was standing behind him in formation while we were doing squad/rank based PT up the ROCKY STEPS and introduced myself because we have a mutual friend (his sister Carm). I did my training for this event by watching a shitload of Rocky movies but I didn’t do any of the actual training. One of the exercises was to do 25 push ups, then run up the steps, and come back down one at a time. This took too long so cadre had all of us left do the push ups and then run our asses up there (Handley had the fortunate timing to do the push ups and then do them again as a bonus). There was an award for not being in the last four to finish and surprisingly, I wasn’t among the slowest 4! 


This does not mean I am a high performer and this is mosdefs not a high performer kind of blog – you want Mattie Rogers or David Goggins or Jocko or one of those peeps who advertise their discount links because I assume you have to have more get-up-and-go than the average dude to get a referral link. So back to why Ray is in this post.

What happened is the class got to the bottom of the steps and everyone was standing around and breathing – hard if you’re out of shape. Cleve yells for the four slowest GRTs and two were up there but nobody else was moving. Ray decided that this situation was not satisfactory so he got grabbed his gear and ran up there quickly to end the cadre yelling. Well, he seemed like a reasonable guy at the time, and since we’re now friends (this lasts as long as the event does at minimum), and the GRT code (not a thing) means I couldn’t let my new friend run up there without a battle buddy. I got my stuff and we got up there and wouldn’t you know it, those carabiners you never need for events? We actually needed ’em this time! As every class knows, there are a million carabiners in the group and no rope. After trying to rig up a daisy chain of carabiners Cleve told us to gtfo and only gave us one carabiner and he linked us up on the side of the ruck.

This is not a secret but I am most assuredly not tall. Ray is a tall dude.

We were best described as Twins à la Arnold and Danny DeVito. Ray was tall, got the hair, good looks, and fitness. Sucks to be him ’cause I got all of the good traits – short, balding, and a weak/nonexistent cardio game.  I…yeah.

Our dumbasses were carabiner’ed for ~5 miles so we had to walk side by side and shuffle everywhere one carabiner apart. This has several positive results – the class can’t take you seriously cause you look ridiculous, you aren’t able to really help the class, and if you think being TL means people take you seriously, you find out that that is not true and also people laugh at you. First time that’s happened.

Walked through there a few times on the trip (not event)

I guess some other stuff happened but imagine carrying the world’s heaviest sandbags (heavier than fucking Normandy) for a hundred or two hundred meters and then switching to a slightly lighter or heavier sandbag, depending on your weird, and doing that without a break. Seriously we had to imagine it because we couldn’t help. I imagined it was really heavy and that’s all you need to do to be there. To top it off, you have two idiots carabiner’ed together yelling at you to switch sandbags. So many death stares. All we could do was…ask them to keep switching. You don’t win many popularity contests like that but I guess we ain’t here to win those.

I’m not actually sure why we’re here. 


17 miles
104 finishers
33xx class number
3 pints
4 pints
8 pints
All the pints

From my count, I had 8 pints. Handley said I had 4 beers. Dustin said 3. I don’t know who’s right but I know those two are mosdefs wrong.


Schuylkill River