Tag Archives: having fun

Running Start _ When Two Worlds Meet

November 15, 2013

I am once again walking Aquatic Park. It is the easiest somewhat natural location within walking distance from my apartment which I can navigate without getting lost. Invariably, then, unless I’m at the gym I get my exercise here. As I near a turn on the sidewalk which takes me through a paved, even stretch of trail past a playground, I see Caoilte up ahead. I move to catch up with him, so we’re walking next to each other.

“Hi,” I say in pictures. I would give the hand sign for greeting but just now a manifest person walks by us.

Caoilte beams at me. “You’re walking tall,” he says, light dancing in his eyes.

“Of course I am,” I affirm proudly, smiling at him.

“Do you still want to run with me?” he asks expectantly.

“Sure!” I say, honestly ready to try anything at least once. I do however send Caoilte a picture as a bit of a warning that I have terrible running form, am extremely out of shape as far as running goes, and have been told, with special thanks to patriarchy, that I run “worse than a girl.” Some of this is hardly my fault. I can’t practice running on my own, because it’s not safe to run with a guide dog. For obvious reasons guide dogs are trained to walk ahead of their blind partnered humans, and it’s too easy through the jarring motion of running while holding onto the dog’s harness and moving quickly to pull the dog off course while simultaneously getting ahead of him. That situation can be rather dangerous. Hence why I run in starts and stops lest I get ahead of my dog, and move like I’m expecting to take a nose dive at the ground at any second.

Caoilte thinks this over for a while. Finally he says, “If you run tall like you move when walking tall, you’ll have a smooth motion over the ground. As long as you can see me in front of you, and if you keep in step, you won’t trip on anything or fall. That way you won’t need to run as if you fear a lack of self-protection—keeping your head tucked in and leaning forward so you don’t get hurt makes sense when you’re alone, but slows you down, is more effort on your body while you are going a distance. If you get too far ahead of your dog, too many times, we can walk fast instead.”

This all sounds like an excellent idea to me, even if it’s nothing I have done before, so we take off and have a go at it. I have literally followed in the footprints of otherworld beings before, in those instances on hikes, and in doing so have avoided getting lost, stubbing my toes on rocks and twigs, or veering off the path. It is easy for me then to keep Caoilte in sight, attempt to not run in the somewhat defensive manner I usually do, and place my feet where he does.

I run, easily, for five minutes. Then it gets difficult. Caoilte is deliberately running at my pace, rather than his own, but I haven’t run anywhere since 1996, and unfortunately, that’s noticeable. I am out of breath and a bit lightheaded, and the world is a bit blurry. I keep running for about three more minutes anyway, and then Caoilte stops and turns around. “This is new for you,” he says, ”You look very tired. We should walk the rest of the way.”

I think to myself that yes, there’s a part of me who’d love to switch back to walking now. It’s a lovely idea. The rest of me is not having any of it. Tired? Me? Giving up? Walking? No way. “Thanks,” I reply, “But really I’m fine. I’ll keep going. I really want to try.”

Caoilte’s eyes darken into a look that is serious and stern. “You’re not fine. No amount of tenacity will ever make up for refusing to be honest with yourself and others. You have no need to prove that you can persevere. You have need to learn to care for yourself. We’re walking the rest of the way.”

“I understand,” I say accepting this, and I have no need to argue. I think over what he has said as we fall into step with each other, watching the water and the trees and the crows overhead, and the people we pass by. I realize that we are communicating in the silence without pictures, without language. We do not speak, and yet we are each understood by the other. This is what it is to be seen. It requires no explanations, justifications, or sequences of thoughts to be who we are. I realize this is what connection, genuine connection, is all about, and it can only exist in the presence of authentic honesty and the living of the truth we find within ourselves. I understand beyond thought, because it is now within my experience. I grow.

The End: Fairy Tales Gone Awry

We’re taking a break from usual content today to bring you a large dose of ridiculousness, humor, and absurdity. As I am currently a very, very stressed out grad student, I happily present to you … in the style of pointedly pure procrastination … a diversion. So laugh, cry, or do whatever else you were planning on doing today and have fun!

You’ve heard all the old fairy tales and stories about superheroes before. But here is what your mother never told you:

In her old age, Bat woman decided to stop taking life so seriously and just wing it.

A much older Superman admitted the joker was right in one respect, and from then on laughed at his mistakes on the fly.

On the day the ex-men and Zoro crossed paths, they traded conversation and ideas. Zoro left convinced of the power of fighting tooth and nail, and the X men began representing themselves with the sign of the Z.

An aged Rapunzel refused to let a bad hair day get her down.

Snow White sat with her grandchildren enraptured at her feet as she told them of her childhood. “It’s not true what they say, that a bad apple ruins the whole bunch,” she concluded. “After all, I learned, didn’t I, that what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.”

An elderly Hansel and Gretel sat at the table having dinner together. At one point Gretel turned to her brother and said, “There’s something I need to tell you. You’re the only living relative I have, and I can’t keep this a secret any longer.” “What is it?” her brother asked encouragingly. “I’ve grown to be more spiritual in my old age. I’m learning to become a witch.” Hansel was quiet for a long time. Finally he said, “hmmm. Well in that case I don’t think I’ll be having any more chicken tonight, thanks.” “Not that kind of witch!” Gretel laughed. “Oh forget it, I must be getting old,” Hansel grumbled irritably, “Could you remind me again which witch is which?”

After Goldie Locks went through two nasty divorces, she had an epiphany. Of course! She said to herself, I should choose my next man in the same way I chose which chair to sit in in the house of the three bears: not too big, not too small, but just right.

Cinderella’s face was ashen as she held the hand of her dying Prince Charming, now in his eighties. “Do you have any last requests of me, dear?” she asked solumnly. “Yes,” he said, his eyes serious and cloudy, “Live the rest of your life to the fullest. Tend the hearth of your heart and don’t let it burn out. And remember, if the shoe fits, wear it.”

After Rumpelstiltskin stomped and fell, unconscious, through the queen’s floor, he landed in her private indoor garden, was mistaken for a garden gnome, dressed in a ridiculous outfit, and taken to kindergarten by a servant’s daughter for show and tell. After that, babies just never had the same appeal: and he always checked before leaving on a nepharious mission that he had the right floor plan…

On her deathbed, Sleeping Beauty admitted that her waking life was not nearly as interesting as the dreams she had from age sixteen until her prince woke her up. “Ah perchance to dream,” she said longingly of the possible life she might have after death, “I wish I never had to kiss it all goodbye in the first place.”

The aging ex-wife of Bluebeard wanted to take the car to get groceries.
“You look fretful my dear,” her loving second husband observed, “Is there anything I can do?” “My keys!” his wife cried in distress, “I can’t remember where I put them. I had them in my hand just a minute ago. I can’t leave without them.”

The little match girl was actually taken into the warm house before freezing to death. Much much later, at ninety-five, she died from heart failure and exhaustion. “Her body was just burned out,” the doctor told her grieving family.

Ariel the mermaid, now no longer little in any respect, turned to her loving husband and asked, “Remember our wedding day when I finally found my voice and you said you would love me for all time?” “Ah dear, I do,” her husband replied. After a thoughtful pause he added, “You were so beautiful that day. The whole event went swimmingly.”

Spider Man was called back from the waiting room at the doctor’s office. “I’m sorry to tell you this,” the doctor said soothingly, “But we’ve confirmed a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s. You will slowly lose your memory until your grasp on reality is hanging by a thread.” “Oh, that’s all? Well if that’s the case I can handle it,” Spider Man replied with confidence.

Dorothy passionately espoused that there was no place like home. Then she got married, adopted a rescued dog, a stray cat, and two rabbits … and had three children…

The ugly duckling learned he was a swan. After that, he started making money treating psychological patients—until he was exposed as a quack.

Beauty was talking with a friend after her husband’s funeral. “How are you doing?” asked the concerned friend. “Terribly,” Beauty confessed. “They served roast beast at the funeral reception.”

“Where do babies come from?” a grandchild innocently asked Mother Goose. “I don’t know,” the old goose answered honestly, “But I’ll take a gander and find out.”

A not so little, aging Red Riding Hood was asleep in her bed. Suddenly the door swung open and an irritatingly gregarious youthful grandchild bounced into the room. “Grandma! Grandma! I’ve come to visit!!!” the little girl screamed. “Arrrrrrrrrrggggg.!” Came the reply from the bed, as Red Riding Hood opened her mouth, revealing fang-like dentures. “Grandma, what big teeth you have!” the little girl cried. “The better to eat you with my dear,” her grandma snarled, her dentured mouth contorting into an eerie grimice. With a shreak the frightened grandchild ran out of the house and back into the woods. Yawning, her grandmother promptly fell back asleep. Peace restored, she thought smugly, as she drifted off.