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17-Nov-2008 SMC

Monday 17 November 2008 Leave a comment Go to comments

On Saturday we all went out for dinner – the missus got a new job at Sutherland and it was our 17th wedding anniversary. we went to an indian restaurant in liverpool. it was great. Was most impressed that the kids all tucked into the food also. I love indian food and so my plan is working (ie get the rest of the tiller clan to love indian also).

On Sunday I ran at the sydney marathon clinic for the 1st time. I was keen to see how my training would stack up to a flat fast road run and a half marathon is about as standard as you can get. 1.47 was the answer. I had no real pre-conceived idea but figured whilst running that sub-1.50 would be good. clearly I am going in the right direction. the course was good, aid and markings good. I will probably try to go more regularly as its a good hit out. lots of people I knew there, so it made it worthwhile. I won’t list them for fear of missing anyone off. It was pretty much exactly one hour from home so a lot closer than striders.

This week the bushies are running at garie beach Garie Beach carpark (flat beach run – suitable for newcomers) – Bill Hicks really cracks me up (there are mountainous hills on 3 sides of garie and the 4th is the sea). I will probably go as I feel bad to have been such a rarity there. Suspect they will start approx 6.45am Saturday if anyone is feeling foolish.

Last week I went out twice socially. Makes a change from being a pariah. Friday was at a pub at cockle bay. lots of coolrunners. some new some old and some in between. Couldn’t drink much as I had to drive home and late at night its 90mins or so. met miners and brewer and tfive for the 1st time. I am sure tim said he was going but he missed it, or maybe I dreamt it.

Weds was a coolrunning film night in cremorne. Saw the marathon de sables video for this year. Have never been keen on that run – sounds like a lot of money, but I was quite impressed. if time/money were unlimited then I could do this, but they are so I won’t. the spirit of the marathon was a strange film. I really liked the build up and quality and bit of history but in my mind it was spoilt by focussing too much on virgin marathon runners and their over-complicating the training, and carrying gear etc. jesus just go out and bloody run. ignore all the crap and run. it annoyed me and speaking to some others it annoyed them too. having said that it was great to see a fillum about running and great to see 200+ runners go along.

I enjoyed meeting the Simon boys who organised the evening. Having met them a couple of times, there is something I like about them. I bought the room to read book they were flogging. As you know I am a sucker for a book. Particularly about quitting your job to work for people in the 3rd world. I would have done that if I’d had the guts. there I said it.

As this was posted to my old blog on coolrunning, it had these comments attached :

Comment by “John Stevens” a pseudonym from a well-known fun runner in NSW, or his wife 😉 :  Haven’t read the book, either.  But is it a question of “guts”, as to whether to down tools here, and go physically to where people are struggling, for enormously complex reasons, to live?  (Sorry, I’m not having a good afternoon with words, again).  I think of the problems in the poor areas, in two loose categories – those of geography/climate – drought, poor soil, isolation – just a darned hard slog, on and on for generations.  Then there are the cultural/political/social problems – health, exploitation of people and resources, fighting over tribal and racial issues, -> too many issues to list.

Anyway, what I’m saying is, seems to me you are in a good position to help, living in a well-resourced nation, with a good education, technology at your fingertips, and relatively speaking, the income to contribute to other people’s lives.  Not to mention the political freedom to act as you choose.  If you leave all that, plus your own children’s upbringing in the mix, to “go” to a poor area, so you can feel you are “there” making a difference, I wonder if that just serves to lessen the juxtaposition of your “wealth” against their poverty?  Yeah, I would agree, there is a need for people with expertise and willingness to live under the hard conditions, to help communities work towards survival, safety and freedom.  And it is satisfying to physically exert an effort towards something you want to see achieved.  But whenever someone is added to the community, the local resources are stretched that bit further.  That is, not all of us who are unhappy about the continuing poverty of 50% of the world’s children, can physically go to them.  Supporting the NGOs with your $ is not as immediate or exciting, but on the ground, maybe it’s a pretty effective contribution after all?  Book review of “Leaving Microsoft” when you are finished it?

ETA – Sorry, I know that is a simplistic view, and not battling out the issues of the World Bank, globalisation.  I am too frustrated by the enormity of the big picture to think of where it begins and ends. But unless you can take down some of the world’s biggest corporations, and share the market more evenly, then I can’t think how else to make a difference as one person, than to share my own income and resources.  In that, I am willing to stand alongside you, and say that it takes guts to do what you can, and how can I ever be satisfied with my efforts, if I know I could do more, if I tried harder?

My own comment back: john – arrrgh, jedi mind tricks! At a certain point in time I realised I could do anything I wanted in the whole world, and I wanted to travel and not get a job and DO SOMETHING. So I got a job and sat in the office -> that’s what I meant by I didn’t have the guts to do what I wanted. Which path was most effective in the long run wasn’t a question that I asked. But that decision taken 20-odd years ago sees me here sitting at a pc at bedtime – middle aged, middle class and middle of the road old fart living on past glories.

ps nice blog, and no not everyone uses facebook 😉

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