Book Review – The Oatmeal

My awesome husband, who really is awesome, (I’m not just saying it because he reads my blog-because he doesn’t), bought me a book for Christmas that I had been longing to read:  The Wonderful and Terrible Reasons I Run Long Distances.

If you’ve never heard of The Oatmeal, you need to. RIGHT NOW. The stuff this guy’s brain comes up with has made me laugh more than half of the posts I’ve seen on Facebook – combined. But besides being an amazing artist, he’s also a real-life runner. Not a professional athlete, but a person.

He created “The Blerch.” I have a Blerch. I hear from it quite often. Mostly when I see donuts or go the store to food shop with my husband. I also experience my Blerch on weekends when it feels oh so good to just stay in bed. And, why shouldn’t I eat that entire family-sized package of Oreos in one sitting?

But anyway, let’s get back to the book, shall we?

cover of oatmeal

Now, there are multiple sections to this book, and not all of them are directly about running, some are about Japanese Bees….which was actually a very interesting section not to be skipped over. However, my favorite part of the book has to be when he goes through running a long race.

comic 1

I too, felt like this after my Marathon, but I wouldn’t say it happened immediately. It took a few days for my brain/body to recover and realize what I had accomplished. I did feel like that race was a Kraken, and it was calling me to defeat it. Large, scary, ready to eat me whole. The reality at the end of the comic is ridiculously true for us regular-old runners.

I shuffled, and I groaned. I gorged on chicken noodle soup from my favorite local restaurant and gummed a cheeseburger down, telling myself that I earned it. I celebrated with my friends like I had slain that Kraken, leaving it bleeding along the streets of Pittsburgh. Because, in the end,  I did slay that Kraken. And just like we all have a Blerch, we all have a Kraken that needs to be slain.


If you want to experience the awesomeness that is the Oatmeal, or you want to purchase one of his books, check out a local bookstore or order online here


About AlyL

A wandering spirit drawn to running, music, theater, and those that give life to others. Functioning in a life that's next to normal.
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