Wednesday, September 1, 2010

View From The Street - Posers

Its amazing all the stuff you see when walking.  By being on foot and moving at a pace that lets you take note of your surroundings, you really pick up on a lot of things you might not normally see.  There's the normal stuff like historical markers, picturesque views, snakes on the sidewalk, drunks in the alley, etc. and there are the comical things like "posers."

A poser is someone who tries to give off an impression of being something they are not.  For example, true surfers are quick to notice the ones who wear the clothes, talk the talk, adopt the look and even buy a board, but never set foot in the water. 

Well posers ain't limited to the waves!  The other day I noticed a couple in their 30's (who were actually pretty fit) drive up to a parking lot on the Wrightsville Beach loop and hop out of their BMW.  Nothing significant about that, except they were loaded to the gills with all the proper accoutrement's for jogging.  The perfect clothing, the assortment of water bottles mounted on the waste belt.  The high dollar shoes, the gold plated ipods, the designer sunglasses.  The term Yuppie Jogger (yogger???) comes to mind.  I mean they were decked out, looking deadly serious about jogging.

Then came the extensive warm up routines.  They stretched 1000 different ways for at least 15 minutes, making sure they were in full view of everyone that passed by.  It was a really big production. 

Then they strutted up to the sidewalk, posed for a moment side-by-side, looked at each other and appeared to count down to zero then off they went, in a perfect cadence.  (Boy did they look stupid).

So I laughed a bit, then started out on my 5 mile walk, without hundreds of dollars worth of hardware and designer goods, just my trusty shoes, shorts, t-shirt, pedometer and zune.  Less than a 1/4 mile later, I passed by them.  They had switched from running to walking - barely.  But they were walking in step with each other and making an animated production out of looking at some kind of athletic mini-computers attached to their waists.  I snickered and kept on moving, quickly leaving them behind.

I made a detour off the loop for awhile, then rejoined it further down and lo and behold there they were again, moving like robots in perfect synchronization.  This time they were walking fast, but not fast enough, as I easily passed them by at my sustained pace of 4.5 mph.  I never saw them again, but when I finished my walk twice around the loop, I noticed their car was gone, which meant they did one measly lap and left.

Wow, all that preparation for so little health benefit.  I walked twice as fast in half the time with half the investment.  True walking or running requires very little investment, other than time and commitment (and good shoes!).  All that other stuff is decoration nothing more.

Posers, you gotta love them...

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