One thing I forgot in my race report: Ever since I have been doing triathlons, each event begins with the U.S. national anthem. (This didn't happen when I did road races before September 11, 2001.)
I have learned to associate the anthem with being slightly on edge and concurrently impatient to start and a little scared. No matter how many races I do, there is always a little anxiety at the start.
At Sylvania, they typically have canned music played over a loudspeaker while someone holds a flag from the lifeguard stand. This year, though, the music wouldn't play. As the race officials fumbled and tried to get it to start, the crowd of racers started to sing the anthem, and immediately we were all in sync. It was one of the most moving things I have ever seen as we all sang together, with the sun coming up over the lake.