Running with Scissors

Microsoft Word 6.0 and Microsoft Word for Windows 95 had a “Tip of the Day” feature that could be configured to display a tip about Word features every time you started the application. Someone with a sense of humor (there are more of these at Microsoft than you might imagine) had included a number of “tips” designed to make users smile. One of these was “You can hurt yourself if you run with scissors.” Just as our mothers always told us!

I thought about this today as I was walking, thinking that “walking in traffic” is another dangerous activity. This is the weekend of Fairhope’s annual Arts & Crafts Festival, which started today, and my walking route takes me through much of the vast parking lot that the side streets become at this time. The parked cars were just an obstacle; the moving ones were a downright hazard. And today is mild compared to what it will be like tomorrow, as thousands of people hunt for parking spaces (we can be sure that at least two of them will park in our front yard, since we’ve given up on trying to block it off, but with any luck they won’t block our driveway—not that we can get anywhere from here, anyway).

Admittedly, I was walking rather late today (around noon), but walking earlier is not necessarily the answer, either—at least not tomorrow morning, when our neighborhood becomes the scene of the Spring Fever Chase 10K and Fun Run.

Still, I am determined to get out and walk insofar as possible. The weather is absolutely glorious, and I have been balked of walking for too long. About a month ago, I reported being laid low with a cold. Although it (thank goodness) did not settle in my chest, it did hang on for quite a while, making air travel rather a trial (my ears are still popping occasionally). After we got home from the Pacific Northwest on March 5, I spent the next week catching up on mail, email, newspapers, newsgroups—oh, yes, and work (luckily not too much of the last). Still, I did manage to get in three walking days before last weekend, when it started raining; we got four inches over the next three days, and the rain never let up long enough to suggest that it would be possible to squeeze in a 40-minute walk.

The bottom line is that this morning’s walk was only my fifth so far this month, and one day out of four is not a very good track record. I will try to do better in the future.

As for thinking, the way things have been going lately, you would not want to know my thoughts, which have been somewhat blistering at times. But I did see something amusing this morning: several of the downtown streets are blocked off for the Arts & Crafts Festival, and a sign in the middle of one of the semi-closed ones said “NO THUR STREET.”

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