A couple of interactions I’ve had on the web today reinforce the idea that even when a person is talking about an idea, event, or even another person, it is really more about them than it is about the topic at hand. When we feel (correctly or not) our relevance dwindling, we rush to say something- anything- that will get us the attention we feel we need or deserve. I’m guilty of it myself, and today I was on the receiving end of a couple of other people’s insecurities.
The Toast recently published a funny piece on criticism that is particularly relevant, I think.
The take away is that when someone is being a butthead, it’s not about you. It’s about them.
So, I ran that 5K yesterday morning. Unbeknownst to me (until I arrived there), I had signed up for yet another trail run. I don’t think I blogged about it but I did a 4 mile trail run back in May and it was miserable. Trail running is hazardous! Too many opportunities to fall and hurt yourself, at least in my opinion. But that race was a mountain bike trail, and this race was a trail that was mowed through some private land that’s usually used for leased hunting. I didn’t realize that until I ran by some camp chairs and a blind that seemed to be a more or less permanent installation, and then I quickly figured out that this was not a place to run any other time of year. Anyway, I ran yesterday’s race in 38:09, which is about two minutes over my personal best. Considering all the soft ground and sand I ran through, I think I made a pretty decent showing.
Next race is a 5K on August 16th, which is Saturday after next.
I’m running a 5K in the morning, you guys. I don’t think the race will be chip timed, so my Garmin watch and I may be on our own to determine my time, but I’m still looking forward to it. Running is sort of a funny sport. It’s a solitary pursuit, but through racing we find a community. Well, a community and a collection of commemorative t-shirts of varying comfort and quality. Those t-shirts are a separate post unto themselves. I’ll come back to that topic sooner or later.
I’ve heard it said that at some point in many pregnancies, the woman, despairing of ever seeing her feet or reclaiming agency over her own bladder again, reaches the desperate conclusion that she is going to be pregnant forever. I don’t remember having such a watershed moment, but for such a life-altering experience, my pregnancy has faded into the background of my life- which is to say that just because I don’t remember thinking that my child would never come out doesn’t mean I never thought it. Nine months is a long time and is exceptionally difficult to remember in detail, or even generalities, come to think of it.
What I do remember (funnily enough, I was pregnant at the time) was having the thought that I would never be done with my Bachelor’s degree. My college education has been a meandering path, cluttered with changes in major and breaks between degrees. I used to run degree audits weekly, hoping that the requirements would magically dwindle if only I checked diligently. Fortunately I applied that diligence to actually studying, and I eventually finished.
I’m now four classes from completing my MBA, and again I am burdening myself with the ridiculous idea that I’m going to be in school forever. I am exhausting myself.
Please, someone remind me that I don’t need a PhD for anything. Having people call me “doc” is not a good enough reason.
doing a clever thing is not a “life hack”. knock it off.
It’s 1:00 AM and I’m up because I napped during the day. My penance is having nothing interesting to watch on television. How is it that in the 30+ years I’ve been alive, we’ve progressed from having three channels with nothing good on, to hundreds of channels with nothing good on?
I’ve been working on several projects. Let me tell you about them.
The first project is minimalism. I know, I mumble about this one periodically. I also make progress with it periodically. Lately I’ve been pretty ruthless with my closet and my jewelry box, donating items that I don’t love or that don’t have some sort of meaning for me. I also went through a phase last year in which I was buying a lot of eye shadow. As in, more eye shadow than one person could ever hope to use before it begins to expire. Fortunately most of what I wasn’t really that crazy about turned out to be drugstore makeup and not the high end, expensive things I had purchased. The one thing I’m having a tough time with paring down is timepieces. I have a watch that belonged to my dad and a watch that belonged to my brother (both no longer with us), and various watches given to me as gifts over the years (including one that’s shaped like a cross that I’m surprised doesn’t cause me to burst into flames when I look at it, much less wear it). When someone makes the effort to pick out a watch as a gift, they are giving you the most literal version of their time. Time is all we have. It’s precious. I’m sentimental about watches. Even the ugly ones. Even the ones I never wear. Even the ones that might cause me to burst into flame. So I hit the occasional roadblock with minimalism. Which is why you see me mumbling about it periodically.
My other project has been running. I got bitten by the new year’s resolution bug this past January and decided I wanted to be a runner. Notice I didn’t say “lose 15 pounds” or “fit into smaller clothes” (because lord do I hate clothes shopping. HATE.). I quite simply wanted to be a runner. I wanted to be able to run without getting winded, without surrendering my will to live after jogging a hundred yards. I wanted my joints to stop hurting and I wanted my flexibility back. I wanted “I’m getting too old for this” to stop being the truth and start being a joke again.
It’s been a resounding success, you guys.
I started the Couch to 5K program the first week of January, finished it in March, and have just been sort of freestyling it since then. I’ve run several 5K’s since then (four or five I think, they blend together after awhile) and I’ve registered for the half marathon that will be taking place in my city next March. I just ran my longest run of 5.12 miles last night after I got home from work, and I am logging between 10 and 15 miles a week. I may not do that half marathon in record time, but I’m going to do it well, and I’m going to run the whole thing. It’s going to be awesome.
And I’m not too old for this anymore.
So that’s me. What’s you?