The Staten Island Runner

View previous articles | Return to Homepage

October 21, 1999


by Chris Fekete

Back from the dead:
After about 2 months of inactivity the "Fekeditorial" is back in full swing. Personally, I would like to apologize to those who may have been looking forward to reading my comments on various issues and other crap. I'm sorry if I may have let you down, but things have certainly been difficult. Not to sound like a baby, but since school has once again began, classes not to mention track practice and other such activities have dominated my life. Time has been the issue and I haven't really had much of it until now. Now that I have the time, I plan on giving you some commentary at least twice a month. I'll try writing every week but we'll have to see what happens as far as that.

Team High Rock Labor Day aftermath:
I just want to say a little bit about what happened on Labor Day this year at Clove Lakes, which was the THR Labor Day 5k. I want to thank all those runner who participated in our inaugural event. You guys ran great and we at Team High Rock greatly appreciate your support. I would also like to thank the volunteers that helped myself and John Kane make sure this race went off smoothly. All the hard work of the day certainly paid off as we had 110 entrants, no runners got lost on the course and the refreshments were distributed abruptly as the runners came across the finish line. We got lucky with the weather, as Hurricane Floyd almost reeked havoc on us race day, but I guess someone upstairs was on our side. As John said in his column, we have heard very few criticisms about the race, but we want you to know we are going to make the necessary improvements in some certain areas for next year i.e. water stop....etc.
I also want to thank the sponsors and those who donated to the race. Without you guys this would not have been possible. The list is so long that it would be tough to name you all, but you know who you are. Once again I thank you.

Graffiti in our parks:
I would like to make a comment on the graffiti problem Eric Olsen and others think we have in Clove Lakes Park as reported on the sirunning web site. First off, I think that it is great to see so much concern about graffiti in the parks, such as Clove Lakes. The facts is, there shouldn't be arrows all over the place because it makes the park look like crap. I know for a fact, because I run there everyday. There are red arrows and white arrows pointing in every direction. Frankly, it confuses me, and I'm sure it does to so many other people as well. There is little reason for just arrows. I'm a firm believer in the correct marking and measuring of a course and making sure that everyone goes the right way during a race, but I don't think that arrows with no explanation does much for anyone. A possible solution is having a Key or Legend that shows a color or certain shape of an arrow to tell people what they are actually running. They can show up to the park, stretch, get some water and plan out which course they want to run. They can read the Key or Legend and say "Hey I want to run the 3 mile loop today" and thus follow the red arrows or whatever arrow the 3 mile loop uses. The same would go with the other types of arrows. This would cut down on confusion and also give meaning to all the arrows on the course that "seem" meaningless. The fact is that they are not meaningless, they are just misunderstood.
To all you runners out there.......keep in mind what graffiti really is: In the words of the great "Traildog" Ed Manganel......... "Graffiti is mindless and pointless narcissism." He is exactly right folks. When a person "tags up" on something such as a wall with the sole purpose of self promotion, then that is graffiti. The word "Graffiti" has a very negative demeanor to it, and to say that keeping runners going in the right direction is a negative thing then that makes you sound very silly. If there is reasonable markings on the ground for a certain course to run then there should be nothing wrong with that, but to have an arrow spray painted crooked on the ground then that should be corrected.
Just to make it clear I am not in favor of having all the courses that are run at Clove Lakes Park marked with painted arrows. I really believe that the only races that should use painted markings on the course are the races that are run every week or every 2 weeks. Those annual races such as the Wagner Invite and Marty Celic and other such annual races should really use markings that can wash off after time, kind of like myself and John Kane did at our race the Team High Rock Labor Day 5k. We used chalk to mark off the entire course and it washed away in the rain. Lets face it, after that annual race is over, there is no reason for us to see where the race course goes. Just a little something to keep in mind before you plan races at Clove Lakes...."If you spray, you will pay."

Trash Talking in the Forums:
A few comments on the whole trash talking in the forums issue. I really don't like to get involved in issues as far as trash talking against someone, but when my name and the names of fellow teammates of mine were brought up, I knew I had to say something. I am a firm believer in if you have a problem with someone or something, you should approach and talk to that person you have "beef" with one to one, man to man. I know it's a forum and that you have the freedom to state your opinion, but while stating your opinion you are supposed to be making "constructive criticisims"......not trash talking against other people. In a nutshell, if you use the forums to do other than constructive criticism, then you are abusing your freedom. In most cases the person who does the most serious trash talking isn't even man, or woman enough to leave their real name or email address. I have seen this before in the past. Why do these people feel that it is their job to put down or make fun of someone? Does this make them feel good inside to do this? I think a lot of immaturity comes out of trashy comments made in forums. We really need to keep that out if we want to be able to take criticisms.

Wagner College Track & Field heads to Florida:
The Wagner College Track & Field program plans to make a Spring Break trip to Florida for a week in March to compete in a 3 day meet on the campus of Florida State University. Head coach Joe Stasi of the Seahawks looks to have a great week of training in the warm Florida climate which would conclude with the 3 day meet at FSU. This of course is totally fund raised by the team and its athletes. It is a very expensive trip due to the size of the team, therefore we will be taking only 40 athletes. The team has been doing a good job of utilizing many resources in order to meet the quota that we have set, but it is still going to be tough to reach our goals. We are welcoming donations as well from people outside the school. Some families, companies and alumni have supported us thus far, but we still have a ways to go before we complete our goal. For those thinking about making a donation, I just want to say it's great for tax returns, because you can write it off. No matter how much or how little you donate, every dollar helps. We just want you to know that anything that you may donate is greatly appreciated and we want you to realize that it's going to a really good cause.
You can make checks payable to: Wagner College Track and Field, One Campus Road, Staten Island, NY 10301. Attn.: Joe Stasi. Once again the Wagner College Track & Field Team would like to thank you for your help.

"Man on the Street" gets his big shot:
The "man on the street" is now "da man!" John Kane after taking a small role in the Fekeditorial way back when, has since branched off and gotten his own column on the Staten Island runner. The "Man on the Street" by John Kane received rave reviews while it was a feature in the Fekeditorial. It got John to thinking, "I should just have my own column, so I don't have to wait for Fekete to get his stuff together." It's a good thing he did, because Fekete didn't come out with anything for a solid 2 months after his last Fekeditorial. And thus, he lost a very good writer. Now they are in competition to get out some high quality garbage for the people of Staten Island running to read. It's kind of like having the Daily News Vs. The New York Post. Well, personally I am very good friends with John and wish him luck in his column, he was good when he was with me, and he'll be even better alone with his own column. John good luck and godspeed.

Catone adapting well to his surroundings:
Scott Catone, former assistant coach Wagner College Track and Field, seems to be doing real well at his new position as head men's and women's distance coach at Manhattan College. At the recent IC4A meet at Van Cortlandt Park Bronx, Catone's Jaspers men and women went in looking to challenge for the top prize in the University race. As it turns out, both his men and women won in impressive styles. Catone is nothing but happy after their performances that day. "The girls stepped it up bigtime" said the exuberant coach, as the girls pulled off a mild upset. "We are pretty much training through this meet all the way to our conference champs" said Catone. Scott is enjoying his time thus far at Manhattan College. More to follow on Catone.

Chris Fekete