Friday, March 09, 2007

The lone runner, an unsustainable future and an experiment

I was walking to work the other day, and as very often happens, I saw a person running. Not really a big deal, but when ever I see runners it makes me think that I am not exercising at all, I only kind of watch my diet, and all in all I live a relatively unhealthy life style that will eventually come back to get me. It probably already has, I just am not really feeling the effects yet. This time though, I thought about the contemplative time that you probably get from running. Usually, it seems to me, runners run alone. Yeah I do see the whole Willowbrook track team out at the same time, and occasionally I see pairs of runners, but basically running seems to be a solitary endeavour. I only know 2 people that run; my boss and Jimmy, and they both run alone. I don't know about Mr. Skeen, I've worked with the man for nearly 5 years, and I guess I know him as well as you know someone you work with, although I think he obviously is determined and disciplined or he wouldn't run the way he does. But Jimmy I know better; I don't see him as much as I did at one time, but I read his blog, I've seen some of his plays, Jimmy is pretty introspective as well as being determined and I'll even say disciplined, at least when it comes to running. (Carla might say that's the only thing he disciplined about). How many of his ideas, his thoughts about things, his creativity, comes from that whole process of being in a solitary world when running? That in and of itself is enough to make me think that maybe this is something I should consider doing, health benefits would just be an added bonus. I know when I walk to work (which hasn't been enough, although that's about to change), it gives me time to think about things that I might not if I were riding in the car. It's something to consider.
Speaking of reading Jimmy's blog, he and Carla were just in LA. He wrote, and Carla mentioned to me, that they were stuck on the free way and both of them commented on how it made them think that this life we are living is not sustainable. Now I have to admit that for awhile there I stuck my head into the sand as far as peak oil is concerned. After thinking about all the possible repercussions and scenarios, it just became overwhelming. I couldn't deal with it anymore, at it's very worst it's a fate that is scarier than anything else I've ever read about. I wanted it to not be true which is why I turned to John and had him read some of the stuff I'd been reading. He's my reality check, if I'm flipping out about nothing he'll let me know. Well, instead of telling me to stop flipping out, he first talked about it as a problem, and then as the repercussions started sinking in he stopped talking about it too. He told me he didn't want to think about it because it was too big. Well, I have taken my head out of the sand and really tried to think about what I can do, which brings me to the experiment. Now I have thought of this before, and I know there are other people who actually are doing it. I am making a commitment to make do with what I have, if I need something to buy it used if I can, and only after I cannot get it any other way, will I go buy it new. And if I have to buy it new, I'll do my damnedest to try and find it manufactured here in the US. Melissa pointed out that buying American is probably not part of the answer, and I agree with that, but it does go back to my belief that the hemorrhaging of manufacturing jobs overseas and the resultant shrinking of the middle class in this country is a bad thing, and it's my little token resistance to that. I'm also going to walk to work always unless it is dangerously cold, or really dark. Since the weather is probably not going to get that cold anymore this spring (although it's been so weird, it might, which is another subject), it should cut my rides down to about 2. It will be a moot point soon, anyway, because another thing I have to do is leave Hancock. I can't in good conscience, work for a company that imports and sells goods cheaply as a result of cheap labor and cheap transportation when energy is becoming such a problem. Not to mention the fact that most of those countries probably don't have pollution controls in place so they are also guilty in the changing climate. It's kind of too bad, because lately I've really started to enjoy working there again. I look forward to going to work, I really like the people I work with; I like having Joanie around a lot of the time, it's just been fun.On the other hand, though, sometimes I want to scream at the women who can't make up their minds between the blue or green 99 cent a yd. fabric. I just want to tell them to go get in their SUV's and go home, that the way of life they are living is already entering it's death throes and they should spend what time they have left thinking about what they can save for their kids and grandkids. Yeah, it's definitely past time for me to start walking the walk. So let's see how I do.

1 comment:

Melissa said...

You go, Mom!