ATLANTA -- Sixty-thousand runners clogging Peachtree Road in a sea of humanity. Ponytails and bald heads bobbing up and down in a steady stream of spandex. The individual stories blend together in a tapestry that is the story of the AJC Peachtree Road Race.
Except those that don't blend in. This is a story celebrating the truly unique running the Peachtree.
Wonder Woman who had capes on her socks and somehow ran 10K in a strapless bra.
Ariel the mermaid in her seashell top and bright red hair.
Two friends dressed up as beer-themed astronauts, sweating through their plastic suits in the 71% humidity.
And the runner simply known as the "I-85 Collapse Woman".
Her head was topped in a flurry of red, orange, and yellow "fire". She wore a gray drape with a white line down the middle, clearly marked with "I-85". She explained the tubes attached at her shoulders: "PVC charred at the ends."
Her southern accent embodies all that makes Atlanta great: the biting wit with a "Bless Your Heart" finish. The fire and collapse of I-85 threatened to bring Atlanta traffic to a grinding halt. But, we found a way around it. We took MARTA and sat in traffic and complained. A lot.
"You don't think it's too soon for this outfit?" 11Alive's Chesley McNeil asked her at Cardiac Hill.
"Oh no," she said. "Atlanta is celebratin' the fixin' of I-85."
"All of this is in memory of what we went through and survived, and today we are celebrating," she said.
Carry on, I-85 Collapse Woman. We celebrate you and all of your fellow refuse-to-fade into the crowd runners. You make the Peachtree great.
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