Awesome ’80s 5k Run


Another month, another 5k in the books!

I ran the inaugural Awesome ‘80s Run on Saturday in beautiful Pasadena, California or more to the point, the Rose Bowl loop. I had contemplated long and hard about doing this one or the Conquer the Bridge event since I’m not exactly made of money and must choose between events most of the time. In the end, this event won and I’m glad it did.

As the name implies, the event was ‘80s themed with participants encouraged to dress in ‘80s fashion and believe me, the neon was out in force for this one. Well, maybe except for me:


But at least I have stories behind my outfit. The hat was from the 1984 Olympics which were held in Los Angeles, the shirt was from Depeche Mode’s 1988 concert at the Rose Bowl, and the Walkman (not visible) was the one I had in high school in 1986. The rest of the stuff was thrown together and were the best ‘80s-like items I had.

CAM01223At any rate, the vibe was excellent with everybody checking out each other’s outfits and costumes. I saw people dressed not only in ‘80s fashion but also ‘80s icons: Ghostbusters, Hulk Hogan, Boy George, Richard Simmons, and a few were even dressed up as Rubik’s Cubes and Simon games. It was amazingly cool, and there was even a replica Back to the Future Delorean you could get your picture with. To see some of the craziness yourself, click here to view their album on Facebook.

Okay, costumes aside, there was a 5k and 10k to run. Unfortunately there was a delay in getting the run going as the police had to limit the number of runners to 100 per pack. By the time I started going, it was almost an hour past the original starting time. Not cool but not something I’d cry over. It’s not like I had a job interview or anything.


By the time I started going, I realized that maybe standing around for too long may not have been good after all as I started cramping up before I hit 1/4 mile. But I persisted, told myself I was fine and kept going. Just keep going…uphill…

One of the big complaints with runners was the lack of water stations during this event. There was one at about the halfway point which worked out fine for me but apparently not with others. It’s turned into a great, big ugly discussion on the event’s Facebook page, complete with name-calling and profanity. There was also a lack of nutrition at the race’s end, something I wasn’t prepared for as every run I’ve done has had either fruit or bagels at the finish line. Simple advice even for me: people, always come prepared with your own just in case.

In the end, however, my experience was more positive than negative. I met a few friends there and we started off together but then separated about 1/2 mile into it. And hey, I also met someone who was also at the Depeche Mode show in 1988!


Sadly, she admitted to throwing out all of her shirts from that tour and offered to buy mine. Not for sale, I told her 🙂

Finishers got what will probably be one of the heaviest medals in the collection:


This medals is seriously thick, seriously heavy, and seriously cool! Despite a few glitches, the Superhero Events team – they are also responsible for the Hollywood Half events – provided a memorable event and venue, one that was a bit more nostalgic for myself and my fellow DM fan. You could tell that people were loving this event despite the fact that most were probably born in the ’90s.

I left the event with yet another medal for my wall and a yearning to go back to the ‘80s for only a moment to see if we actually did dress as hideous as we did that day.

But I think we know the answer to that.


Next event: Long Beach Marathon Bike Tour on October 7!

20 Years Later

On June 18, 1998, I was just another punk kid a year out of high school. I had a really bitchin’ Chevrolet Chevette which I aptly named The Silverfish because of its paint job.

That day was also the day (or night) of Depeche Mode’s infamous Concert For The Masses at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, CA. The bill also included Wire, Thomas Dolby and OMD.

Was it an amazing show? You bet your sweet ass it was. And in case you want to know the prices of the event, let me consult my ticket stub which is in a frame with my autographed “Music for the Masses” LP.

  • Ticket cost: $22.50
  • Parking cost: $5

Wow! That’s, like, almost $30! I could have filled up my Chevette for the month with that money! Yeesh! But remember, $22.50 was a lot of freaking money for a 18-year-old back then (especially one working at a photo lab making $4.25 an hour). And what was great about the parking was that I parked on a golf course and made some serious donuts on it after the show. I bet some golfers were seriously pissed off the next morning.

But I digress. The 101 show was about as memorable as any I’ve ever been to: 80,000 fans, the food fight, the thunderstorm during “Something To Do” and “Blasphemous Rumours,” visiting all the local record stores in Pasadena before the show began. And did I mention 80,000 screaming fans? It was truly a day to remember.

I bought a couple of t-shirts at the show–$20 each–and still have them today. In fact, I tried one on tonight and guess what?

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