Sunday, September 11, 2011

Moonlight Sonata

It's been a strange 9/11 for me this year. I've written today about what many others were doing to mark the anniversary. I really had no idea what to do myself.
I found it hard to mark the day because to me it represents everything that's gone wrong since the attacks. Rather than use the opportunity to come together as a country, we're further apart. We are more paranoid, angrier and poorer. We are in two wars that don't look to have any kind of an end. Sept. 11 was a horrible day, and we are far worse as a country as a result. Why would anyone want to mark that?
This resonated with me in many ways, and so I do not want to repeat any of it, even though I already have. I can't help it.
Yet 9/11 IS a big part of our history, like it or not, and I can't forget it. I would have to mark it somehow.
I thought of a way early this evening.
There are so many, many things I do not like about our country. I hate our squirming politics, our selfish health care, our arrogance, our pandering to the rich, our refusal to even look at what needs to be fixed and our overindulgence.
But there is one thing I love, and that is our ability to be ourselves.
Individuality is not only allowed, it's encouraged, even celebrated. Politicians who appear fresh and free-thinking are the ones who are celebrated, at least initially, which explains why the crazier candidates get a foothold before (usually) saner minds prevail. We wear costumes to running races. Innovators like Steve Jobs are treated like Jesus when they are close to death.
You could argue the opposite of course. Airport security makes us take off our clothes before we can board a plane, and the entertainment business prefers movies that are reheated rather than created, and bands and blogs and tweets all seem to run together. But come on. The fact that we HAVE all these things, even the chance to go anywhere we want on a plane, is proof enough.
I'm many things, a writer, a father, a musician and a lover of words, movies, creativity, dogs and cats, music (especially the hard stuff), and most of all, I'm an active person. Climbing, hiking, biking, taking risks and, of course, running are all a big part of my life.
There was a full moon Sunday night.
It was probably risky to run in the park, on a trail, in the dark, with only the silver light of the moon to guide my footsteps. It was also magic.
Five miles about did it. I thought about those who died and those who had died since to protect our country.
I ran tired, a little worn out from my 14-miler the day before. But I also fast. I ran hard. Most of all, I ran free.


3 comments:

Grange95 said...

Well said.

There's a reason my favorite run of every year is my run late evening or early morning in the first snow of the season. It reminds me how good life truly is, how much we have to live for. So much has gone wrong in the past 10 years, but still, we have so many good things to appreciate.

StB said...

Politicians who appear fresh and free-thinking are the ones who are celebrated, at least initially, which explains why the crazier candidates get a foothold before (usually) saner minds prevail.

I am wondering if you have this sentence incorrectly written. Did you mean they are not celebrated? Because if they were, then the crazier ones wouldn't get the foothold.

pokerpeaker said...

My fault. It's poorly written (I scribbled out some thoughts after my run and it was late). The free thinkers and crazies are the same people, though not always. I'm not a political analyst, which I'm sure you can tell by my rants on Twitter :)