The Connection Runners + [the thought process]

Pondering Utopia on a Solo Run

Happy Wednesday!

It's been quite the productive day here in the Mitten.

This is mostly due to me being up at 7:30 (early for me in the summer!) because I had to take Kevin to the VW dealership to drop off our Jetta for an A/C fix. Nothing like having the A/C go out right when temps are reaching into the upper 80's and low 90's. Eeek.

After dropping him off, I downed a bowl of Multi-grain Cheerios and laced up my Mizunos. They were happy to see me.

Then I took off for a 3-mile solo run, the first time I'd been out alone in weeks. Ok, nearly two months.

I've been on several runs with Megan, and a few with Kevin & (friend) Kevin, but I've been too lazy to venture out by myself.

I'm not usually one to take post-run photos, but today was different. Today, the sweat made me happy. Even though I ran slow - a 9:59 pace - I was happy to be back out on the road... er... sidewalk.

And so the trial of finding my new Easy pace continues.

Blog Updates

Today was also a day to sit indoors and give the blog a little lovin'. Poor thing. It's been neglected for some time since I was busy working. What? Working? Yeah, that crazy part of life.

Here's what I've updated so far:

  • Katy Widrick always advocates for a simple and clean blog, so I took her advice and spruced up the home page a bit, included reducing the sidebars from 2 to 1 and reorganizing elements found there.
  • The About page also received a facelift with new text and new photos of my ugly mug. Go check it out!
  • And, finally, the blogroll page, a.k.a, the Want More? Run Over to... Page was straightened out and updated, complete with categories for most of the blogs I follow daily.
Whew! No joke, that took a lot of time. But it's worth it. I feel so fresh and so clean, clean now.

Lastly, I'm continuing on in my summer reading quest by working through Brave New World.

Several people commented on that post and said they'd read it in school at some point. I have to say, that it's an interesting choice for young people (not knocking on you folks who did read it back then; I'm just surprised that with the sexy content that people didn't object to it as an assignment).

Basically, the novel revolves around the idea of a Future "Utopia" where:

  • 600 years into the future, most of the global population is controlled by the World State, a collective organization that controls population growth, the economy, and free though (somewhat).
  • People don't reproduce to create new life; instead, the World State runs "hatcheries", which centralize and streamline the reproduction process. Embryos are created by lab technicians and placed into bottles on a giant conveyor belt where they receive certain traits.
  • Children are conditioned at a very young age to follow particular norms and understand limitations and freedoms of the caste system in which they live.
  • Pre-determined caste placement and conditioning practices dictates where each adult works in a specific job-market.
  • Actual relationships and emotions are a thing of the "Past" since males and females no longer need to create a family unit for procreation.
Whew. A fascinating concept, really. Though I'm not done with the novel, Huxley sure has me considering both the pros and the cons of a so-called Utopia, although I'm sure his plan was to highlight the negatives and atrocities only.

I have to wonder: a world without the need to think, to feel, to react, to obligate? I'd have to say that, at times, that sounds blissfully and ignorantly wonderful.

On the other hand: Thoughts, feelings, reactions, and obligations are mostly what fuels this world. To have that all controlled by some outwardly force would just be... scary.

Thoughts on Brave New World?
-If you've read it, what did you think?
-If you haven't read it, do you think you want to explore Huxley's vision of our future?

Thoughts on the idea of Utopia?
-What does a Utopia look like for you?