Friday: Escaping or Connecting?

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As the day winds down and I anticipate rushing like a lizard across a hot tin roof toward the exit door of my place of employment this Friday afternoon, I keep asking myself this question: are you escaping, or are you connecting?

Don’t get me wrong, I like my job – it’s not like I dig ditches for a living.  I also enjoy putting food on the table and being able to replace worn drivetrain components with shiny new pieces of various esoteric forged alloys that allow my gearshifts to artfully fly through the ratios like Hendrix playing the Star Spangled Banner at Woodstock.  In a weird way it’s kind of comforting sitting here in my air conditioned office listening to the shake rattle and roll of the HVAC systems overhead as they struggle to provide me with fresh air and rid this enclosed space of my heat and humidity. Am I really that full of hot air?   But putting that deeper question aside for a moment, at the end of the week I have to wonder if there’s more to life than this daily grind.

Which is why I’m lucky to have found a hobby like biking (although it could easily have been hiking, skiing or surfing etc.) that provides two important survival tools for daily living: escaping and connecting.  At first glance there might seem to exist a dichotomy in those two terms, but they both bring about the same results for me.  Retreating into a world in which I feel I’m in control allows me to shed light like the sun rising over a coastal mountain range. As day spills across the fissures and cracks of difficult situations on the valley floor I can begin to see possible solutions out to sea and beyond. In the pursuit of answers this ability has become an important tool, and lately it’s also given me a medium (through this blog) to help connect with others who hopefully understand what I’m all about.  I guess you could say this is my art.

I’ve never intended this space to be one of those “been here, done that” sorta blogs.  I don’t do enough interesting stuff to qualify for that sort of title and even when I do manage to get out there and accomplish something my “feats” are from great.  Yet looking back over my entries I seem to have babbled on about lots of things over the past year and a half that I’ve been typing away on this page.  What the hell have I been writing about? No wonder why the HVAC system is groaning under the strain right now!

The truth is I’m actually a pretty boring guy (just ask any of my friends) and I often struggle with sharing some of these stories as I wonder what purpose they serve in the grand scheme of things.  But writing about these little escapes have somehow become my connection, and if in the everyday, mundane drudgery that life occasionally is we can sometimes find the unique, challenging and thought provoking, isn’t that the point of this entire existence?

Ahhh who am I kidding?  I don’t create art, I post pictures of my bike on the internet and spit a few words out – but it still feels good to do so.  I hope this blog is at least occasionally thought provoking for you.  Enjoy your escaping… or connecting… or whatever it is you find yourself doing this weekend.  I intend to.

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