Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Running Against the Grain

Counter Cultures are a funny thing. So are perceptions. What is dorky and what is cool? When I was younger, I used to skateboard around San Francisco with my friends and remember telling them that if I ever became a "jogger" to shoot me. Part of what I love(d) about skateboarding was that we were moving through the streets against the grain. Most people looked down upon skateboarding. We were different than these people. They were safe in their cars, taking the bus, walking or on bicycles.
We were pushing our and society's limits, albeit maybe it was more dangerous but it was fulfilling (isn't that part of what life is about?). I have a similar, going against the grain feeling (and almost more intense) when i am running through the streets of San Francisco (or any other city). There are just not many people who run compared to the general population. It is a strange but motivating feeling when you're running through a heavily populated city but still feel alone.
There are whispers of judgments being passed but you cannot hear them and pay no attention because you're deep in your own consciousness which is leading you along your path. There are no laws for runners (well, except for j-walking i guess)... after all, pedestrians have the right of way. Cars, buses, and bicyclists have to stop at stop signs and yield to you. You're pushing your limits while someone in the car you just passed is driving 10 blocks to the movie theatre while snacking on McDonald's. To the rest of the city, you are "working out" but this couldn't be farther from what you're doing. You are traveling, covering ground, lots of it and you are simply using your own two feet. No gears, no gas, no oil, no wheels, just your body, nature's perfectly designed human foot and your endurance.

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