Saturday, July 28, 2007

Thoughts while walking

  • Who looks more psychotic, people singing along with their iPods or people with those Borg-like Bluetooth earphones who look as though they're talking to themselves? If it's people singing along with their iPods, I'm in big trouble.
  • Speaking of the Borg talkers, a couple of years ago I was walking in London and saw a guy in front of me talking and gesticulating wildly. I thought he was on the phone, but when I got ahead of him, there was no phone there, and no consecutive thought process behind what he was saying, either.
  • I'm doing more running on the walk but am still no candidate for a marathon.
  • Playing music is better for fast walking/running than listening to audiobooks. Current audiobooks on my iPod: The Lion's Pride, on Theodore Roosevelt; The Omnivore's Dilemma, which was so depressing the other day as I was walking by a beautiful apple orchard and some fields that I switched away from it; A History of Rome and Team of Rivals, which I haven't started yet; and A Crack in the Edge of the World, about the San Francisco earthquake of 1906. I'm 4 hours into it and San Francisco hasn't been built yet. One disadvantage of audiobooks: no skimming.
  • Thoreau would be appalled to see all of us walking with iPods in our ears, but maybe he wasn't tortured with thoughts about all that he had left undone and the deadlines he was pushing against while he was walking, either. I know we're supposed to be contemplative and all that while walking, but the iPod helps to shut out those anxiety-producing thoughts, so what's the harm?

    ~profgrrrrl~ said...

    Definitely the bluetooth folks are weirder. For sure.

    jb said...

    Yeah, bluetoothers. Seriously. Singing along with a song in your head doesn't make you look crazy (right?), so why would the addition of an ipod?

    Sisyphus said...

    The iPod singing is fine --- as long as you dance a long with the music a little bit. I love it when people do that.

    I'm 4 hours into it and San Francisco hasn't been built yet. One disadvantage of audiobooks: no skimming.

    Ha! This might be why I can't do the whole audiobook thing.

    At least you can have music/books. I swim, so I just have all those whizzing thoughts and worries and randomness and what lap was this again? running through my brain.

    undine said...

    Profgrrrrl and jb, I'm glad you said that. I see so many of the bluetooth people now that I thought I was the only one who found it strange. The thing that irritates me is that if you're anywhere in their vicinity, they look annoyed, as though it's their world and you're not welcome in it. (Maybe they are the Borg after all.)

    sisyphus, I don't usually dance but just run along, singing harmony when I can. I had wondered, though, whether swimming put real swimmers like you into some kind of meditative alpha state where worries didn't intrude; I'm sorry to hear that that isn't the case.

    Sisyphus said...

    Hello again --- I can get into a "zen" like state for a little bit; probably the three or four laps at the center of my workout that are the most intense. But that leaves the warmup and cooldown and lots of the other laps where my brain is still chugging on overtime.

    But still, exercising and not feeling all sweaty? It's the best.