Laboring against Hercules

“A small daily task, if it be really daily, will beat the labours of a spasmodic Hercules.” – Anthony Trollope

Since it’s February 1st (Rabbit rabbit) I figured I can update everyone on the progress I’m making using Day One and Everyday

I didn’t miss a single day writing in the journal and I only forgot to take a selfie 3 times during January. Given my previous performance completing either of these types of tasks in the past, this is a huge win.

My hope is that I’ll have a cool montage (in the case of Everyday) and a wealth of memories and self-knowledge (via Day One), such that each of the small steps I took each day will turn in to a marathon when I’m finished.

I also recorded my second-highest mileage total, running about 90 miles, but it wasn’t nearly daily. It’s the busy time for me at work, so I’m not too concerned about the routine as much as I am the miles, which were high & rewarding.

Maybe through all of this I find some more time to meditate – a habit where my longest streak is about 15 days – to add to my growth potential.

What it is really teaching me is how much time I actually waste that I could be using to contribute something for myself and others. A modicum of effort for a return only time can reap? Compound interest truly is an amazing thing.

Bowie

Other people are saying it better than I could today, so I’ll let them say it. I just want to post this blog as well to add my own raised hand. RIP, David Bowie.

And then there’s this, which is being attributed to the actor Simon Pegg, but was actually retweeted by someone named Simon Pegg (not the actor) on Twitter. Still a great sentiment:

I’ll add one mention of own and that’s the fact that David Bowie was an artist in every sense of the word. Music, theatre, fashion, you name it. And he just kept doing his thing regardless of popular culture, so much so that, for a time, he was “pop”.

That’s the dream, I think. Doing it well, doing it for a long time, doing it your own way.

RIP, David Bowie.

Jet Fuel

Commodity Coffee

Most of my weekday coffee comes from the office Flavia Creation® 400, so I’m not a total snob about coffee. Mostly I experience coffee as a comforting ritual and a vital part of my daily routine. I simply need the caffeine!

Since it’s the foundation for my every day, it’s good to see other folks espousing the virtues of commoditized coffee. In his article Keith Landolfi refers to it as “bad coffee” but I’m the type that thinks the only bad coffee is the kind you didn’t get to drink (caffeine withdrawal is no joke).

That isn’t too say I don’t still indulge in the snobbery of “no cream or sugar”, or only drinking the “Dark Magic” or “Black Silk” Keurig pods when I visit my In-Laws. I’m just happy that I have my morning joe, no matter how subjectively “good” it is.

The story Keith tells is as much about his personal journey as it is about coffee, but this part really stuck out to me:

Cheap coffee is one of America’s most unsung comfort foods. It’s as warming and familiar as a homemade lasagna or a 6-hour stew. It tastes of midnight diners and Tom Waits songs; ice cream and cigarettes with a dash of Swiss Miss.

This, to me, is how I think of my coffee drinking. It’s a part not just of who I am, but a part of the fabric of adulthood and Americana and life. It’s the (literal) bitter that brings the sweetness of living into starker contrast.

Okay, that was a little saccharine, but I think you know what I’m getting at.

For the record, here’s my weekend coffee snobbery:

  • Whole beans that I grind myself (preferably 100% Kona, if I can get it)
  • Brewed in my Aeropress, inverted method, with hot water from a hot water tap
  • Drunk happily in the kitchen like a Folgers Christmas ad

Until next time, enjoy your java, even if it isn’t locally sourced from Java.

Half Marathon Finishing Line

A True Runner’s High

Turns out it may be endocannabinoids (like those in cannabis), not endorphins, that produce the so-called runner’s high.

Whatever the chemical compound, the result is real and it’s spectacular.

That said, I really enjoy this bit:

To survive as a species, we seem to have needed to run, and nature obligingly found ways to make this strenuous movement pleasurable by providing us with a runner’s high.

I certainly experience the runner’s high when I run or I probably wouldn’t be so inclined to keep doing it.

Here’s visual evidence from this past weekend’s half marathon.

Half Marathon Finishing Line

Half Marathon Finishing Line

If you’re still not convinced, the only way to know for sure is to lace up your shoes and go out for a run.

Running Towards Consciousness

Bruce got it, because he created Kung Fu.

Jiro gets it, because he is a sushi shokunin.

Henry gets it, because he’s a runner.

Ruben gets it, because he’s human.

I get it (and ignore it), because I’m human & I run.

There is this connection between mind & body – we call it consciousness & it reveals itself as intention – and I am BAD at being fully aware unless & until I lace up my shoes to go run.

We all struggle.
We all strive.
We all run.

Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.