Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Ranty Ranterson updates her blog.

Disclaimer: My apologies to those who are not into running, barefooting, or semantics. Feel free to move along and wait for the next post. I promise there will be new knitting content in the very near future.

On to my rant of the day

I just read this on a well-known running message board, in a forum geared toward experienced runners, most of who wear normal running shoes:
I checked out barefoot forum, but it seems to be populated predominantly with hard-core BF runners! I'm not there...yet. Some poster got repeatedly chastised for referring to running in VFFs as barefoot running.

Just for make sure for myself, I checked out the dictionary for a definition:
bare·foot (bârft) adv. & adj. With nothing on the feet.

I grow weary of the lack of clarity when people claim to BFR when really they just aren't in big clumpy running shoes. How is it so hard for people to get over that fact that they aren't really running barefoot if they are wearing shoes? Even when the shoes have visible toes. Running in minimalist shoes is a great thing-- but even little shoes are still shoes. It is not a value judgment to say that one is wearing shoes. It is a fact.

It reminds me of the first of The Four Agreements by don Miguel Ruiz,"1. Be Impeccable with your Word: Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean." I know that Ruiz was speaking more metaphorically, but its wisdom holds true here, too. Why is it so hard for people to just speak the truth? Live the truth? Most agree that's important in the big picture. Isn't that big picture made up of a zillion small moments? It seems to me that if we work on being true in each little experience, the big truths will be easier to come by.

Here ends Norm's Tuesday tirade.

P.S. I'll probably come back and edit this post in the very near future. I feel like I'm on to something here but am communicating it poorly.


  1. My daughter and I were reading about barefoot running the other day and we started laughing because we were saying "but what if it's hot?" "but what if there's glass?!" and so on. There were a lot of buts. Our feet always hurt and want to give barefoot running a try.

  2. You become very good at not stepping on yucky and/or pointy things when you have no shoes on. The heat thing is a consideration in your neck o' the woods, but if you run in the morning before the street gets too hot, it's not an issue.

    After a few weeks of being mostly barefoot, I really don't enjoy putting on shoes. My tootsies love the freedom. 

  3. I understand what you are saying, Robin. I am always telling the kids to be impeccable with their word. But I had no idea it was part of any larger set of agreements. On the one hand, I am often irritated by people who believe that thinking they would like to do something and actually doing something are the same thing. There seem to be a lot of hangers-on hanging on to nothing in particular...just whatever faddish thing takes their fancy. For those who do take whatever-it-is seriously, it's insulting.
    On the other hand though, I've gotten smacked by the literal stick and that also stings. When I quit eating dairy and eggs, but still ate refined sugar on occasion, I dared not breathe the word "vegan".

  4. Personal integrity is all important. It isn't easy to stop lying to yourself and to be absolutely truthful with yourself, but it's worth the effort. Like you, I just wish everyone would practice integrity, even if only a little bit. Takes courage however.

  5. I'm big on integrity, but I have to admit t hat it's surprisingly difficult to say exactly what you mean.  I took some philosophy of language in college, and after that class, I was nearly in tears because I wasn't really sure that anything meant anything at all.  I guess I settle for the closest thing to integrity: giving assent to the extent that assent is possible.  Meaning that I try to mean it.  Really hard.  But sometimes... well, sometimes, meaning goes all Derrida on me.

  6. Oops.  My mistake.  True, I'm not barefoot.  I didn't realize it was a sign of my lacking integrity though.  That's a little harsh, but you can't do anything that would make me like you less.  You're way too fabulous for that. 
    I can't change the past. I can only change my word barefoot to "minimalist shoe".

  7. Stacy, I don't mean to be harsh, exactly, it's just that barefoot and shoe-lite running are still pretty different. And I don't think there's a thing wrong with running in VFFs. I'd totally do it if I could find a pair that fit me. 

    And thanks for calling me fabulous. You're pretty snazzy yourself. And a way better runner than me.

  8. It's ok guest. :D  I was just trying to reconcile my honest mistake (albeit careless mistake) making me a person who lacks integrity, and I just couldn't get to a place where I wasn't feeling defensive.  That's my problem.  So, I should be very specific and say that I won't be barefoot running anytime soon.  I will, however, be VFFing it every chance I get.