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RE: If I see someone wearing a Boston jacket I know they’re a hobby jogger
There are 3 distinct cultural mindsets when it comes to things like Boston jackets.
OP is of the first group. These are people who ran competitively in HS and college and were pretty good; maybe even very good or sub-elite. These people know what it’s like to train at a highly competitive level, be genuinely very good, and still get your arse kicked. These people view running primarily as a competitive activity.
The second group is chiefly people who were slower in HS and/or started running later in life. Most of these people enjoy running as a personal activity and vehicle for self-fulfillment. They may or may not worry about beating their age-group peers, but mostly running is a “man vs. self” affair for them. Many of these people enjoy sharing their running accomplishments with friends and family, who are supportive.
Group 3 is genuine elites. They do not care about this discussion.
Group 1 sees the Boston jacket as a “participation trophy”, an obnoxious thing used to show off for non-runners and claim a level of prowess that isn’t really there. Group 2 sees the jacket as a fun symbol of a meaningful personal achievement, which will also prompt postive affirmation from friends. Group 3 doesn’t give a hoot about the jacket beyond the level of exchanging pleasantries with enthusiastic fans.
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