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  1. Wealth
November 2, 2009

Fast Times in the Big Apple

By Spear's

All New Yorkers wondered how they could party into night on Halloween and yet run or cheer the marathon the following morning. Work hard, play hard!

Even the City that Never Sleeps can be given a run for its money, and this year was more exhausting than most. 

Late October and early November have always been dominated by one color here: orange, the color both of Halloween and ING, the bank that sponsors the New York City Marathon. 

This year, one event followed on the heels of the other, testing the stamina and creativity of New Yorkers, who all wondered how they could party into night on Halloween and yet run or cheer the marathon the following morning, for New Yorkers never do anything by halves: work hard, play hard — or in this case the other way around.

Halloween is a strange phenomenon here: a much bigger deal than New Year, even attracting tourists; many Brits fly over to New York simply to experience the unbridled partying that happens in couture costumes in pre-parties, parties, post-parties, after-parties, what-are-you-still-doing-up parties, and the doormen-are-now-changing-shifts parties. Then run 26.2 miles to cure your hangover. Only in New York. 

I know one person who boasts he did it: got home at 9 a.m. and was running the marathon an hour later, finishing it in under four hours. Testosterone-infused boast? Hard to tell.

But I don’t have that kind of stamina; I was going to say “not anymore,” but I’m not sure I ever did.

I was fortunate enough to be invited yet again to New York’s premier society Halloween party — indeed, given the importance of Halloween, possibly the premier private party on the New York social calendar. Held annually in a private home in the West Village, it always has an art theme; downtown New York graffiti art of the 1980s was this year’s. 

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After all the Madonnas, club kids, and Basquiats moved on into the dark night in pursuit of other spills and thrills, I still had another day and night to prepare for my minor contribution to the marathon: sympathetic carbo-loading with my oldest friend at a West Village Italian restaurant on Saturday night.

As I joined her husband on marathon day to cheer her on in Brooklyn and at two other spots in Manhattan, it looked as if a few people had indeed come straight from their Halloween parties: a Lion King, a clown, a Mr. Incredible, and a Spiderman were only a few of the costumes running the marathon. But nothing compared with the show at the finish line: after that grueling exertion, even costumes couldn’t hide the tears of joy all around. 

My friend, having achieved her personal best and her self-imposed goal of finishing in under four hours, is already signing up to do it all again next year. In the meantime, I better get some sleep!

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