March 14, 2018

red bird

'We're gonna party like it's ...'
I'm considering joining Nikki Massey's StepBet challenge next weekend (where you put up money, meet your goal for steps walked each day for six weeks, and then get your money back plus a small portion of what other people put up who didn't make theirs).  It's not gambling because you're in control of your outcome, and I have a black Garmin step-counting thingie that for some reason I'm able to wear, in spite of the aversion to watches.

The Garmin site politely informed me last week that since I had not picked it up since 2016, it "lacked information" needed to set goals for me.  Whatever, Garmin.  Just because this hellish device got all dusty in a dark place doesn't mean you can forget about me.  StepBet suggested wearing it around for a week and then trying again.

I keep forgetting it, though most days I remember.  Today, it stayed home, and an hour ago, I said to hell with it because I want Garmin to at least acknowledge that I was ambulatory today, instead of saying I slept twenty-three hours last night.  I put it and some sneakers on and drove to a park in town, one that has a paved, meandering walking track that is, in my experience, nearly devoid of other people when I'm there, making it just right.

We do what we see others do, so before leaving, I downloaded a music-playing app on my phone, downloaded some 80's music from my cloud storage, and then realized I don't have a USB-C adapter for ear buds and all of that was completely pointless and in addition to not having a long, blonde, bouncy ponytail and a 26.2 sticker on my car, I wasn't going to have any music.

Well ... why did I need the music?  That's like staring at a screen somewhere, isn't it?  Constant distraction?  I chucked the phone, grabbed my keys and sunglasses, and headed out into the pleasantly chilly early evening air.

I walked over a mile, with the sound of distant cars and wind in the bare tree branches filling my open ears, punctuated by the occasional swish of my mental tennis racket, which has done a yeoman's work today.  Then I heard a bird chirp.  It was close.   I looked up and saw a male cardinal.  That never happens.  I never actually get to see which bird is holding forth, hear the sound a particular bird makes.  There are always too many leaves, or I'm indoors, or I try to see and it stops chirping and looks around at the other birds all innocent, like, "Who said that?"  It was a clear call, and I watched it for a while, and now, because I didn't plug in and shut the world out and listen to Prince jamming "1999", I got to hear what a cardinal sounds like.  A real one.  I got to hear his song.

Now I know.

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