“It was just this whimsical idea,” Politzer said. “It’s an opportunity to be an actor and to contribute to something that makes a difference.”
A copy of her passage, written in a stream-of-consciousness style with no punctuation — “. . . and then I thought well as well him as another and then I asked him with my eyes to ask again yes and then he asked me would I yes to say yes. . . ’’ — from the Penelope section of “Ulysses,” is kept in her car’s glove compartment all year long, she said.
The performers will have a new audience this year.
USA Track & Field holds its national 10K competition for the masters age group, runners aged 30 and older, at a different venue each year. This year’s race was scheduled for Michigan, but when those plans fell through the Ramble was chosen as the replacement venue.
“I’m so happy Martin got the national recognition of this being the American Masters 10K Championship,’' said Dick Smitley, who as the race’s codirector strikes a gong to start the runners each year. “It means a lot to him and to me.”
Tom Derderian, president of USA Track & Field New England, has run the Ramble numerous times. He said the combination of culture and athletics makes the race similar to the original ideals of the Greek Olympics. Besides that, it’s well organized, which helped it land the national championship.
However, Derderian admitted, the Joyce readings would be “pretty irrelevant to top runners who are flying by.”
The Ramble will also include “Take a Walk,” a 4.5-mile fund-raising trek for the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.
Hanley always wanted the Ramble to have meaning, and used to donate race profits to Dana-Farber. But as expenses rose, the annual donations fell.
The fund-raising role was assumed by Take a Walk, which is organized by Dedham Savings Bank and the family of Janice Stanley, a bank employee who died of cancer. The walk has raised $12,000 to $22,000 a year for Dana-Farber, said Robert Stanley, Janice’s son.
The race also dedicates each race to people whom organizers describe as “prisoners of conscience.”
The first was Vaclav Havel, the dissident writer who became the first president of the Czech Republic. This year’s race is dedicated to a Bahraini activist, Nabeel Rajab, who has been imprisoned for his opposition to the government.
The Ramble this year will also give participants and spectators a way of responding to the Marathon bombings.
When she heard about the bombings, Politzer said, she knew instantly how important the Ramble would be. Though she doesn’t like crowds, she hopes people will show up in droves and enjoy the race.
“I don’t care what happens, I am going to be there and I am going to read,” she said. “I will not let an act of terrorism limit the size and scope of my world.”
Same-day registration for the James Joyce Ramble and Take a Walk begins at 8:30 a.m. Sunday at the Endicott Estate, 656 East St., Dedham. The race begins at 11 a.m. More details about the events are available at www.ramble.org.