For as much as any reason, I pedal first to escape the chaos in the headlines. Still, the top news stories of the day usually occupy the first 5-10 minutes of every ride. It takes a few miles to outride them. Breaking news pedals fast.

Eventually I’ll slip into a rhythm, leave the news cycle behind me, and welcome thoughts of more pleasant things as they coat the walls of my mind with more peaceful images, if only for a couple of hours.

405D99D6-0683-4400-AF17-7B9DAC83176E.jpeg

I remember playing my first game of Pong in the mid-70s. Once the fascination wore off, the game got boring quickly, even at the most advanced level. I was more likely to walk away from Pong due to boredom than to end a game in a crash due to the increasing pace of the game.

But video games advanced…

Soon there was Pac-Man, Frogger, Super Mario, Centipede, and all the classic games of the 1980s.  The speed and the complexity of the games increased as the levels advanced, and for most players, they would crash before they would get bored and walk away. Pong, by comparison, became obsolete.  It was just too slow to be entertaining or stimulating

And that’s where we are with the current news cycle…

Though I may yearn for the slower news days and the broadcast journalism speed of the 1960s and for the monotone delivery of Harry Reasoner or Howard K Smith, I would be as bored with them and as unstimulated as I would be playing Pong after an all-night Call Of Duty bender.

535773BD-C4D7-4136-8D05-F890F7514614.jpeg

The term slow news day will never be appropriate again. We will never have another slow news day.  That’s what increasing social complexity brings us.

But the idea of them — the idea of a slow news day is a romance thing, like the idea of once again playing Pong. I may yearn for it, but I would be bored, unstimulated, and unentertained. And for most people most of the time, the news isn’t really about being informed anyway. It’s about being entertained and stimulated, just like a video game.

70FF63F3-9881-4243-80F2-4147B695B834.jpeg

The ride completed, I carry my bike across the threshold, reach for a workout towel and soak up the sweat from my forehead while I  simultaneously close out my riding app.  Next…? I click my Reuters app and checkout the news — to see what I missed while I was escaping the headlines. Doh… Jhciacb.

This week in numbers…

Bikes ridden: 2

Miles: 147

Climbing: 9,200’

Average Speed: 16.1mph

Time in the saddle: 9 hours 09 minutes

Calories: 9,970

F40A6063-DD8F-410B-82D5-81CD0C48EA10.jpeg

Whether you ride a bike or not, thank you for taking the time to ride along with me this week.  If you haven’t already, please scroll up and subscribe. Oh, and there is this from the Marcus King Band . Enjoy…!

 

5 thoughts on “Noose Cycle…

  1. “Breaking news pedals fast.” I like that line. I ran on roads for years. That allowed me to be constantly in thought, solving problems, designing soon to happen surgerys, and the like. Now that I run off road, I need to pay more attention to where I am stepping. To which yesterday for example, I took the dog on a run. The path had a lot of roots going across it from the beautiful trees that lined our way. He had gotten too far ahead of me so I looked up at the perfectly wrong time. Next thing I know I went face first towards the ground. I said when I got home to share my story, “I fall good!” as I was not injured other than a bruise on my knee. Followed by, “That is not something I want said about me too often, however,” lol

    Like

  2. True story: The highest compliment I get has a trainer, is when a client says to me that they fell, but they were able to catch themselves through their upper body strength and balance, and prevent any type a serious injury. Sounds to me, sir, like you’re doing all the right things

    Like

  3. Very topical for me, Roy, as I’ve spent the last few hours trying to figure out how to schedule my time in the new year in order to do all the things I want to do, only to face the harsh reality (for the umpteenth time) that I can’t do everything I want to do – I want to do more things than are humanly possible. So, I’m now in the process of deciding what is most important to me and letting the rest go…at least for the time being. I remind myself I can bring back anything I miss if it eventually becomes more important to me again in the future than my top items are now. I am overstimulated and exhausted – and I absolutely realize it – I’ve just been afraid to do anything about it until now. My brain has been hooked on the novelty of the stimuli…even when it’s not anything I’m interested in…my brain just likes that it’s something new. As I was going through my inbox just now unsubscribing from clutter like store emails enticing me to buy things I don’t need, I ran across two emails right in a row that I did want to read – an article about JOMO (Joy Of Missing Out) and your blog post. I think the universe is confirming for me that, as uncomfortable as hitting this breaking point is, I am heading in the right direction for my health (mental, emotional, and physical) and my creativity. Be well, my friend. 🙂

    Like

    1. One of the bigger battles that I contend with each day, it’s how to remain calm in the face of increasing social, technical, and intelectual complexity. It has been theorized by more than a few, at the rate in which these complexities are expanding is faster than the rate that the brain can keep up with them.

      The highest discipline anyone of us can truly know, is knowing when to let go.

      Hint: Few people are good at this.

      Each month when I pare down all that I am involved with, I’m actually pretty successful — right up to the point of adding two steps in for each one I remove. Shut down one blog…? Start a new one. Then, decide to open a bicycle shop. Shit.

      Good luck, Shannon. If you find a secret to the art of letting go, I’ll rent it from you…

      Like

  4. Having spent years in medical device manufacturing,running lean Six Sigma. I can not stop thinking about” Process Time “ When I see you out Cycling and read about your rides/Cycle time. I can imagine your process with purpose,mentally and physically. Ride healthy my friend. Thank you for your writing healthy my friend.
    Love and looking forward to your works of words.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s