Wednesday, December 07, 2011

I am a runner

I've been running since October.  Having great fun.  Feeling good to call myself a runner. 

Should I call myself a runner? How many kilometers must I have run to be a runner?

Some identifies can be had without practice or repetition.  One only needs to kill once to be a killer, cheat once to be a cheater, or buy the "right" lottery ticket to be a lottery winner.  To be a runner, singer or painter, however, one has to have committed to the activity and done a fair amount of running, singing or painting.  Some other identities, say, a parent or a good friend, take time and efforts to maintain.

It would appear that those identities that are hard to acquire or maintain are capable of delivering greater and more long-lasting happiness.  It may well explain why people are not necessarily happier as they become richer – they do not acquire any new identity as they move up the rich to richer to obscenely rich ladder.  Indeed, people report that they are happier if they kiss goodbye to some of their money.  They give, and they become philanthropists, educators, patrons of art and supporters of scientific discoveries.

There are people whose only sense of self-worth appears to derive from their status as one of the very rich.  They are glad that they are ten times richer than their peers but constantly fear that they may one day wake up form their sleep only to discover that they are nine, not ten times richer than their neighours and old friends.  My most humble advice to them – get a life, get a new identity, no matter what, or do some running.


Aileen said...

Killer, painter, runner - really liked your analogy. And your new template. Very nice (but so different I thought I was in the wrong blog :P)

W said...

Good that you like the new look. The change is not intentional - for some mysterious reasons Blogger changed all links to dark blue, which are hard to read against a dark grey background. I just pick a design from the template library. Me too need to get used to it.

HKP said...

And then there's Caravaggio, who was both a painter and a killer!

Gweipo said...

great on the running thing. You are right about it being an identity. Even when I've been laid off running for sometimes a year at a time I still identify myself as a runner ...

some more clues as to if you qualify as a "something"
* you read websites dedicated to it
* you subscribe to a magazine devoted to it
* you compete with others doing it
* you strive to improve your performance in it.

W said...

Thanks HKP for your comment. Much appreciated. I can name a few writer/runner, violinist/painter, photographer/painter...but not any killer/painter.

W said...

Hi Gweipo,

* you read websites dedicated to it - yes.

* you subscribe to a magazine devoted to it - No, but I have read Haruki Murakami's (村上春樹) "What I Talk About When I Talk About Running" more than once.

* you compete with others doing it - No, never. My runner friends are super runners. One of them just finished Macau half marathon in less than 1'40" (he drank until 2:30 am, slept for 2 hours and then ran the race).

* you strive to improve your performance in it. - Yes, I am tracking my runs with Endomondo. BTW, running apps like RunKeeper and RunMeter provide more functions but Endomondo is more pleasing to my eyes.

Having satisfied two and a half of your four criteria, I guess it's ok for me to call myself a runner.

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