Way back in May and June of 2011, Christian and I discussed two specific activities taken up by many an aging man in our hometown of Portland, Oregon--lawn-mowing and running. In those posts, I tried to convince Christian of the merits and benefits of each activity, firmly believing myself that each one makes me a more righteous, ethical, handsome and charismatic person. I couldn’t convince him. Also, while he once ranted against some of our town’s bicycle riders, he has now become one himself. Rather than call him a hypocrite, I thought it might be nice to see if, in the over two years since those first discussions, he’s changed his perspective at all.
Pat: Well, Christian? What do you say. Have you had some time to break out those shoes and hit the pavement or trail? Or...have you reconsidered the joy inherent in a nicely mowed lawn? And tell me about your experiences on the bike. Please.
Anything you want to say that might indicate that I was right would be fine.
Christian: You couldn’t be more wrong. First off I’m not a hypocrite with regards to the bike thing. In that post, as you’ll recall, I talked about how I hate all bicyclists. Even though I have now become one, I still hate them all. So no waffling there.
As for running and lawn mowing, I still greatly dislike both but feel they are a necessary evil. Running because its important to exercise and lawn mowing because I’m tired of bringing my neighbor’s property values down. I did try to combine the two, to kill two birds with one stone, but it turns out I hate running while mowing the lawn even more.
And I still haven't experienced runner’s high. Although I did once have the entire left side of my body go numb, I then smelled sulfur and saw a bunch of dead relatives of mine trying to usher me towards a bright light. Is that runner’s high?
Pat: No, not really. At least not any high I’ve experienced.
(psst! By the way...I might have tried running in a state some might refer to as “high” one time. Not advisable.)
So it sounds like you have fully embraced the health-focused, landscaping lifestyle! I’m proud of you, Christian. Really. It takes a lot to change our patterns and lifestyles, and it sounds like you have made a truly mediocre and half-hearted attempt to embrace some new practices.
What do you have in mind for the next steps of your paradigm shift, buddy?
Christian: Nothing. That’s all there is.
Oh... I guess I did recently turn to a lifestyle of extreme religion and became a devout born-again snake handler. But other than that, nothing else.
Pat: Well, that’s a start. Are any of the snakes fast? Can you run away from them as a form of exercise?
Oh! Or can you sprinkle them across your lawn as a way to make mowing just a little bit more fun? If you see them as pets, then I’m really sorry. That last bit was maybe a little morbid. If not though...chunk ‘em up!
Christian: Well since I’m still relatively new to my Snake Church they haven’t let me handle any real snakes yet. Mostly just ropes and hoses right now. Although I have been bitten several times. Not by snakes.
One thing I have learned though is that you aren’t supposed to run from the snakes. Or hoses in my case. They are to be handled. Repeatedly. Lots and lots of handling. I think the idea is that if you can handle snakes you can beat the devil. Or something like that.
They speak a lot in tongues so I still don’t fully understand everything. I’ve had a hard time finding a translation app for my phone that does tongues to English so until then it will probably be slow going for me. Looking forward to that first real snake handling though.
Pat: The snakes speak? That’s weird. Or...wait. Do they do something with their tongues? Wait. Did you mean the snakes or the people. WHO THE HELL IS SPEAKING?!!?
Christian: Jesus Pat, the people are speaking in tongues not the snakes. We don’t talk to snakes. We just hold them deathly close to our major arteries as a way of showing Jesus we love him and that we are ready to fight cloven hooved demons for him. We’re not idiots.
Now if you'll excuse me I need to go practice sucking poison out of puncture wounds.