Next Year, I'm Not Doing Anything Stupid Award

The Gene-pool improvement project: Trail-running sub-division...

It's time again for the VHTRC "Next Year I'm Not Doing Anything Stupid Award!"

This award was inspired by an experience I had on a training run several years ago with a group of fellow Furrbutts. The members of the club generally avoid the standard Washington conversation of "What do you do, and for whom do you work."

One day several years ago, with the temperature close to zero, several members of the club were out on the Maryland section of the A.T. for a run. Fingers & toes and drinking tubes froze solid as did the hot water I had cached that morning. Talk somehow turned to work and credentials. We took an inventory and found that the group contained two JDs, three PhDs, a CPA, a DVM, and several MBAs. Dr. Bill Parlett observed that we were a club of "over-educated idiots." All sensible high school drop-outs were warm at home, while we were shivering in the woods.

This award is named in honor of longtime member Bob Coyne, who was heard to utter these bitter words when his Grand Slam attempt ended badly. The award pays tribute to our own distinguished membership of over-educated idiots.

If you have an example of especially bad decision-making by a member of the club, which occurred in the award period, please e-mail Brian McNeill at bmcneill@imf.org the individual's name and a brief description of why you believe the decision is more noteworthy than our usual baseline idiocy. Photographs would be most appreciated.

Previous Winners

  • 2011 Stephanie Wilson
    What happens when you take an unintended detour to Signal Knob in January while wearing not much more than those trendy arm sleeves and a singlet and it gets dark...and your turnsheet, map, and headlamp are safe in your car.
  • 2010 Eva Pastalkova
    In which Eva decided to counsel residents of the Virginia Highlands on the proper care of their huntin’ dawgs and lived to tell her story
  • 2009 Mike Bailey
    Running 180 degrees in the wrong direction for hours, then bonking, and wildly gesticulating at passing motorists on forest service roads because his jaw was too frozen to talk made Mike a true ambassador for the club
  • 2008 The MMT entry process
    The TARP bailout made more sense
  • 2007 Scott Crabb & Quatro Hubbard
    It's easy to mistake Montana and Wyoming when navigating on a trail run. They're both big, generally square states out west
  • 2006 Gary Knipling & the snake.
    For demonstrating how not to milk a venomous snake while on a trail run. The snake should exercise better judgement. He doesn't know where Gary has been or what he might have picked up.
  • 2005 Vicki Kendall
    For running TWOT on wet-leaves, while carrying a bruise the size of a bath-towel on her leg and hip.
  • 2004 Deb Pero
    For a case of frost-bite developed while dodging snowmobiles that passed her at 60 mph and bushwhacking through 6' deep snow across a mountain in sub-zero temperatures.
  • 2004 Peyton Robinson, Special Lifetime Achievement Award
    Anyone who would push a baby-jogger 185 miles in the cold rain while Keith Dunn taunts him deserves it.

Brian R. McNeill
bmcneill@imf.org