Expect lots of shin splints next session
Filibusters are supposed to slow the legislative process, not speed book sales or promote exercise fads. But state Sen. David Brinkley’s choice of filibuster reading material this week might have some of those unintended consequences.
When the Frederick County Republican wanted to stall a vote on granting in-state tuition to certain undocumented students, he took the Senate floor to read aloud from Christopher McDougall's “Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen.”
The book, which promotes barefoot running, suggests that high-tech running shoes are to blame for many running injuries. (Sounded good to my husband when the book came out a couple of years ago, until he wound up with plantar fasciitis.)
Brinkley is not a runner, much less a barefoot one.
“Hell, no,” he told me by phone. “If you saw my physique you’d know I wasn’t a runner. I bike. If you’re 220 pounds, you got no business running.”
But he is nonetheless taken with the book.
“I’m into it,” he said. “I just bought it the day before. I was at a Borders book store waiting for my daughter, she was going back to college. I looked down and I became fascinated by it.”
Brinkley only got five or six pages into the book before the Senate agreed to send the bill back to a conference committee. But that was enough to hook some listeners.
“I had four people send me an instant message and e-mail, ‘Tell me about that,’” he said. “This is the first time that somebody read something on the floor that people were actually enjoying listening to.”