I'm in the fourth kilometer of a 5-K race last Saturday, pushing myself as hard as I can, when suddenly a runner gives me a hard elbow as he passes me.

This is very unusual in these polite British races, and before I can summon enough breath and New York City attitude to say something like "Hey, what are you, blind?" I see that he's got a rope around his wrist, attached to the wrist of a guide runner.

And on the back of his shirt are the words VISUALLY IMPAIRED.

Yeah, he's blind. And he apologized for bumping me. And suddenly I was glad I'd been too winded to say something stupid.