Running the Canberra 42km Marathon for the Heart research Institute (HRI)

Talofa lava and Gidday from Brisbane,

This year has started off very tumultuously with natural disasters throughout Australia and across the Tasman, in New Zealand. Somehow, I feel abit paranoid about providence and the affects and effects of fatalism which has been very unkind to my environment.

For starters, I live in Brisbane, where we have had recent flooding, which has prompted me, along with some 23,000 other Brisbane residents, to feel compelled and obligated to become a “do-gooder”, admittedly, this is something which comes natural for me, people, even if I am an atheist and a devout irreligious citizen of both Australia and New Zealand.

I was born in Christchurch, New Zealand, which has now become famous throughout the globe for all the wrong reasons. As they say, “you may take the boy from the village but you can not take the village out of the boy”. Well, I am a New Zealand born Samoan, and although, I am a very dark brown skinned Polynesian man, I was born in a very temperate and cool city called Christchurch. This going back a few decades mind you, say back in the 1960s when the flower power era was nouvou and Vietnam and Cuba were sending fearmongering Capitalists to war in an Asian country no one up until then had known ever existed, well, at least for most of the modestly educated diggers whom were sent there to fight for ideological politicians.

I like to do a bit of narssicistic self promotion over the internet which is my own right to do so since no one in their own right mind would or should give a shit about anything I have to say anyway. It is all irrelevant unless you do take notice and respond. I don’t care if anyone ever reads any of my blogs at all. Suffice it to suggest, just like my sister would agree with me in stating, that this is a very therapuetic pyschological cathartic exercise, in prose. Unlike an Anne Frank foreboding moribund diary, these entries are not fatalistically tragic nor action packed, in fact, these entries are simply a window into a world of which I view the world and which I share it with you. I gain nothing from this exercise except a purely individualistic glimpse into my life even as moribund, morose, exciting, sensationalist and outright mundane. I don’t care for anyone’s opinions let alone a pyschological profile of yours truly.

So, I have received a commendation certificate for helping out flood victims along with some 23,000 other volunteers. SES and Australian military personnel are simply doing their duties and are not included in this ‘mud army’ accreditation, the difference is that the SES, politicians and the Military personnel are fully taxed funded employees whereas we, the volunteers, spent our own personel effects, brooms, shovels, cleaning agents, clothes, and our own elbow grease, to proffer a civic and civil duty to our community.

Now, on a less than self gratifying sense of achievement, I am about to embark on yet another adventure on the roads, by running my fifth 42km marathon in as many years.

I have run the Gold Coast 42km marathon, then my second 42km ever, in 2008, for the Cancer Council of Australia. I had tried, in vain, to fundraise for my 42km effort. Unfortunately, I had not fundraise a cent from any donating people, and so I donated my own money to the Cancer Council of Australia, only $25 though, I was unemployed at the time. Not only did I fork out my own money to contribute to Cancer sufferers throughout Australia, I was jeered and heckled as I was running the 42km marathon.

I have, therefore, assumed that people are not mind readers, and that if someone does do a good deed for others it may be miscontrued, or may be not so misconstrued as serving some other ulterior motive by people with more skeptical views bordering on my true insincere motivations for doing some endurance events and paying for it from my own meagre sources and income. I was ignored by people which is good in a way because in truth I would always shy away from public profiling especially by strangers within the media. So I had resigned myself with having to be labelled as a “do-gooder” ego-centric, at least, in my interpretations.

So, factually speaking people, as an unemployed man, running a 42km marathon, and even forking out what little meagre resources from my wallet to fundraise monies for some stranger dying in a hospital bed for his or her cancer medication, I thought, that being human and showing an inkling of humanity is considered as self serving and self precating to most people. In truth, I do agree about some of these motives. In fact, I had considered all these actions as suitable for my resume and curricula vitae, so in a sense, they are so correct. I have always considered doing such a do gooder deed as feather on my cap as a decent human being and a fully self actualised man.

In the meantime, I have decided to re focus my energies once again on endurance events and after doing the Ironman triathlon in 2010 for the second time I had decided to do the Canberra marathon for the first time. However, since this will be my fifth marathon as already mentioned, I will be more wary of the tortures that my body will undoubtedly be expected to endure. Not only will I feel this torture physically but more than likely financially as well.

So, I will have to approach my fundraising efforts for the Heart Research Institue (HRI) differently. Instead of trying to cold call and door knocking and seeing people scoff at me seeing a mesomorphic ex-rugby player, stating that I am about to run another 42km marathon, I will allow Fairfax papers, and the Canberra Times newspapers assist me in my fundraising efforts.

Once, again. I am sceptical about the enthusiasm by sado-masochists endurance athletes especially if they are muscle bound and weighing 82km as I do. But, I do endure and I will cross the finishline with some sense of regret of my oft mediocre efforts in my four previous outings. This time, I hope to have a self satisfying grin on my tortured face when I complete number five.

Good day to all. Tofa soifua

Tim Tufuga

3rd March 2011

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