Monday, October 10, 2016

Lust for Life

"All human beings are also dream beings. Dreaming ties all mankind together."
- Jack Kerouac

We stand on the balcony and look out into the night, mesmerized by the spread of lights that extends as far as the eye can see. We wait for it to offer its hand, and take from it aggressively, or slip into it passively, or light it on fire when it doesn't smile or say the right words. Humankind wants for immortality rather than conception. The universe, in all of its indifference, just pushes onward without need for trust or disdain; the world only wants for survival. The relationship can be traumatic, but also, in all of its chaos, the relationship can be symbiotic. We have to want for survival, too. Immortality? Immortality we have already, when we dream.

I've consumed a lot of caffeine. In three hours I'll be running down the road in the cold, in the dark, with the night and a stockpile of daydreams to keep me company. People say we do this because we've been afflicted by something, and we've got a deep seeded need to either run from it or learn to overcome it by stripping our illusions of perceived physical limitations. I think we run with it, whatever it might be, because when we're in pain we feel the most alive. It's an affirmation of our mortality, and an opportunity to see ourselves for all we are, and have been, and want to be; we dream without pain, but only in the depths of mental and physical anguish do we understand how precious and fleeting our own mortal existence is. And, in that, we become more than dreamers. The tangible and intangible lose their definity. Consciousness is not so easily discernable as we've determined it to be, separate from our surroundings. We become the world. And it lends itself to us, the way any functional part of an entity works to maintain homeostasis.

My feet have seen better days. The ravages of the Last Annual Vol State 500k have been hanging on like an old boyfriend who doesn't know when to stop calling. Nagging aches, toenails that forgot their purpose, an extra 10 pounds that hung around for an after party that never happened: my body retaliated. Though, it did warn me. For more than 250 miles my body shouted belligerantly, in every way it knew how, "I'm going to do it". It forced me awake while begging for sleep; and, I'd lament my hungry soul and eat another corndog. The wires were always crossed, but I wanted it, wanted for it, and languished in it. Again and again, I loved the wanting, and it consumed me-- the intrusiveness of people upon my agonized conception, the wanting for physical validation of my passion for the experience. It was there at every corner, in every pained step, every deep gaze at the stars and neon lights and into another dreamer's eyes. I love hard, and then I loved harder. And it hurt.

...and still hurts.

Whatever exists beyond the confines of these walls isn't waiting for me, and I'm not going to wait for it to catch me. We're in this together, tripping over potholes and catching our breath, crawling into the places that make us wonder, wandering in the space between dreamed conception and the conception of reality. We're all dreamers. And we're all here, laughing, languishing, lucid, in love, and lusting for life.

My shoelaces are tied and I'm ready.

1 comment:

  1. Good morning Kim-

    Apologize for the intrusion of a message from a total stranger, but I am sure you will understand the intent. My name is Paul Schmidt, I am a marketing executive and single father living in Southern California. I wanted to ask if you would assist me in gaining access to entry details of the Barkley. I have been taking some extensive time and research this past year into looking to participate in the 2017 race next year. With the close of the 2016 race, I feel that it is time for me to take the steps to making this happen. As I have read, been told and have heard lectures about…the only way to truly get in touch with Gary is to engage and ask a fellow runner who may be willing to share entry details.

    After reading many of the reports on Matt Mahoneys page, from Jared, Jennilyn and the group…I read through yours and followed you through to your blog, which I also enjoyed. Being a creative guy, I also am a writer, outdoorsman, blogger, ccomplished chef, etc…so I appreciate anyone with a creative outlet.

    Ultimately I am looking for your assistance on getting some information on the race, getting in contact with Gary and perhaps your insights and steps into the application, your experience and the race. My reasons for taking on this challenge are extensive…call it a personal journey, a connection to my love for my daughter…I could go on. Perhaps someday I can maybe share those with you over a coffee after we finish a loop.

    If you have any reservations about sharing the information, I understand.

    I hope this message finds you well and I send my regards.