In Search of A/The Point of Life

Posts Tagged ‘give-take’

KAIDIE DIES: Variation 16 (Happy Aprilsss Foolsss)

Discovered buried alive and burdened to death under layers and layers of her compulsive hoarding of mappings. Every mapping is unique; each mapping is capable of yet more mappings. There's simply no bleeding end to it because everything is connected to everything else. Huffed and puffed, overloaded, hence Kaidie kabooms, has a headache and heartburn and cold sores and piles under all these piles, implodes, as a rather happy April's Fool, smiling.

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KAIDIE DIES: Variation 2.

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REVERIES OF A SOLITARY RUNNER II: flights with Qu Yuan and his beautiful suicide lament (3BCE)

We seek not immortality - not even longevity (what for?), but a life lived to its fullest, every lifetime, each time we live it.

Qu Yuan’s description of his passage to death and beyond (3BCE) is simply one of the most beautiful passages we have ever encountered – the juxtapositions of internal turmoil with external journey, the spiritual and the tangible, the political and the personal, the metaphysical with the physical, the melancholic and the ecstatic, the extreme feeling of isolation and liberation, the unliving with being most alive – are so skillfully presented that the reader can not but feel happy (for the narrator) and heartbroken (for us, for there will be no more beautiful verses from him) at the same time. (Any experience that evokes 2 opposing emotions simultaneously – that the sublime embodies perfectly, with the interplay of the fearful and the awe-inspiring – is the most powerful experience for us). While we certainly cannot say that we fully agree with or understand it (with the multiple references to the religious/spiritual), Qu Yuan’s song hits us. According to Livia Kohn in her delightful The Taoist Experience: An Anthology, Later Printing (State University of New York Press, 1993), Qu Yuan’s The Far-Off Journey (Yuanyou) is ‘most classical of all ecstatic journeys in Chinese religion and literature’. In this song, the poet and official describes ‘a visionary journey that takes him from the sorrows bad afflictions of his unhappy life on earth through various physical practices and concentration efforts to the realm of the gods and immortals.’ Qu Yuan is of course renowned for eventually having thrown himself in sorrow into the Miluo River as a protest to the corruption of his government, the reason for many Chinese to mark the annual Dragon Boat Festival by throwing rice dumplings into the river from dragon boats in the futile wish that the fish would eat the dumplings instead of the tormented poet. Sensible 21st century beings that we are, we respect and enjoy the lovely story/legend/myth that makes Qu Yuan heroic and poetic, as much as we take it with a pinch of salt (as we wolf down the rice dumplings). At the same time, trans-dimensional runners that we are, we have 1 foot on the ground, and the other in cuckoo land, in blue skies; grounded and earth-bound as we are, we travel the world(s) (in spirit – whatever that might be? With more bags of salt? How heavy is that!?!) with the doomed anti-hero-fantasist-travellers, ala Don Quixote (Cervantes’ and Kathy Acker’s), Fitzcarraldo and Orlando. While Qu Yuan flies (and at some point of the song, GALLOP!!), we run, trans-dimensionally; while he seeks union / re-union with an ineffable force (the Tao), we dispel the notion of the existence of any convenient, centralised thing/being/institution; while he is disembodied, leaving his physical body behind, we run, embodied, burdened, with us, our physical, corporeal beings – which is the point, which is also the problem, the problem of our 1000-day troublesome endeavour, but the problem is very much the point. And, unlike Qu Yuan, we seek neither longevity nor immortality (as if one lifetime is not more than enough!?!). Yet, like Qu Yuan, and like Rousseau, we know, and we do, want to move on. Here, we reproduce Qu Yuan’s Far-off Journey (Yuanyou) from Kohn’s anthology (p. 251 – 257). Qu Yuan’s astral journey reminds us of that of the ancient Egyptian as we learnt at the British Museum at the wonderful Book of the Dead show, as well as the hauntingly beautiful paintings of Marc Chagall (so much so that we are compelled to pick up the brush and paint and canvas to paint [again]- although the production of paintings, of things, is is direct contradiction to our desire/purpose of wanting to not attach, to be free from burden, in our earthly travels and beyond…). The process of transcribing the translated text help us move closer to Qu Yuan’s mind, as he traverses the worlds, as every word comes off the page to the screen, from the poet to paper, from text in one language to another via the translator, from the translator to us, from us to you.

Saddened by the hardships of the common world,

How I wish to rise up and travel ways far-off!
My own strength is feeble; there is no support –
What could I stride on to float up and away?

Encountering nothing but foulness and defilement,
I am alone and miserable – who could I talk to?
At night I lie restless, never sleeping,
My soul roving about till the approach of dawn.

Thinking of the infinity of heaven and of earth,
I cry with the eternal toil of human life.
People of the past I cannot reach;
People of the future I will never know.

Pacing with restlessness, I yearn to get away,
Confused and close to madness, I long for the eternal.
My mind goes wild, strays off without control;
My heart melancholy, I am ever sadder.

Then suddenly my spirit, off, never to come back.
My body, like a withered tree, left behind alone.

I look within, try to get back my grip,
To find the place where life’s energy arises:
All vastly empty and tranquil, there is serenity.
Quietly in non-action, spontaneous truth is found.

I hear how Master Redpine cleansed the world’s defilements
And wish to follow the model he has left.

Honoring the blessed virtue of the perfected,
I admire all who in the past have become immortal.
Taking off in a transformation, they were never seen,
While still their name and nature continue on and on.

Oh, how Fu Yue went to live among the stars!
How Han Zhong Succeeded to realize the One!
Oh, for the body to slowly fade off in the distance –
To leave the human crowd behind, to vanish so completely!

Oh, to follow the flow of energy, rising ever upward –
Swift as the spirit, wondrous as a ghost!
To see thaw rolled get hazy, look back from far-off –
All dazzling essence, flashing back and forth!

Oh, to go away from all the dust to greater purity –
Never to turn back to old home!
To escape all the afflictions and never fear again –
None in the world knows how this truly is!

And here I am, afraid of the passing of the seasons,
With every rising of the sun on its westward move.
A subtle frost descends, sinking ever downward,
I fear my fragrant freshness will fade all too soon.

Oh, to leave it all for free and easy journey
Through years eternal that will never end!
Here, who would enjoy with me my remaining fragrance,
Walk, through the country air and share my depth with me?

Gaoyang, my hero, is removed ever farther,
Where will this life, so lonely, lead me to?

Then again, as spring and autumn hurry,
How can I always stay in my old home?
The Yellow Emperor cannot become my model,
But I can follow Jumping Wang to please myself.

So I eat the six energies and drink the nightly dew,
Rinse my mouth with yang itself and swallow morning light.
Guarding the purity of the spirit light within,
I absorb essence and energy, drive out all that’s coarse.

Wandering in the wake of the gentle wind,
I reach the Southern Nest without a single stop.
I meet with Master Wang and pause to speak to him,
Inquire about the harmony and virtue of the One.

‘The Tao can only be received,’ he says,
‘It never can be given.
‘So small that has no within,
‘So big it has no bounds.

‘No twists at all inside your soul,
‘And it will come spontaneously.
‘Focus on energy and open up to spirit –
‘Let them grow in you at the midnight hour.

‘Wait for the Tao in emptiness,
‘Clear even of non-action.
‘All living species rise from this,
‘It is the Gate of Virtue.’

Thinking of my dear old friends in my imagination.
I heave a heavy sigh and brush the tears away.
Slowly again I float, rising ever farther:
Suppressing now my will, keeping myself controlled.

I point to the God of Fire and gallop straight to him,
Wishing to journey to the world’s southern end.
I gaze on wilderness beyond all known directions,
Float on and on over watery expanse.

The Blessed Melter of the South stops me on the way,
So I go back by phoenix and visit the River Consorts.
They play the ‘Pool of Heaven’ and sing me ‘To the Clouds’;
Both ladies then perform the Nine Songs of Shao.

Asking the Xiang goddesses to play their zithers for me,
I bid the Sea God dance with the River God.
They pull up water monsters ti step forward with them,
Their bodies coiling and writhing in ever swaying motion!

Gracefully the Lady Rainbow circles all around them;
The Phoenixes soar up, stay hovering above –
The music swells ever higher, into infinity.

At this point I leave to wander yet again;
With my entourage, I gallop far away.

At the world’s far end at the Gate of Coldness,
I race the rushing wind to Clarity Springs.
I follow Zhuanxu of the North over piled-up ice,
Turn from my path to pass through Mystery Darkness.

Striding on cosmic mainstays, I look back behind me,
Summon Qian Lei the Creator to appear,
To go in front of me on the level way.

Thus I tour all four outlands,
Traverse all the six regions,
Up to the crakes of Heaven,
Down to the Great Abyss.

Below just lofty openess, there is no more earth;
Above just empty vastness, there is no more heaven.

I look but my vision blurs, nothing to be seen;
I listen but my ears are numb, nothing to be heard.

Going beyond non-action, I reach the Clarity,
Become a neighbour of the Great Beginning.

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REVERIES OF A SOLITARY RUNNER I: Following the footsteps of Rousseau and his final work, Reveries of a Solitary Walker (1776-1778)

One of the images we collected in our solitary runs - a picture of peace and a fecal-matter-smeared wall and the defecator in Nondon.

The philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau wrote Reveries of the Solitary Walker (Les reveries du promeneur solitaire) between 1776-1778. When he died in 2 July 1778 at the age of 66, the work remained incomplete. The autobiographical series of essays is structured as 10 walks that Rousseau undertook in Paris alone. The work was written just after Rousseau ’emerged from the darkest passages of his life’ (says Peter France in the introduction to this 2004 Penguin edition, which we read at the Waterstones at Gower Street in Nondon one difficult midmorning), after many years of exile. During these final 2 years of his life, Rousseau felt misunderstood and unhappy. Rather than a work that is about walking, or has walking as a subject matter, Rousseau uses the act of walking as a medium, as a form, to express his final thoughts, before his death. Although Rousseau was not a runner, we identify with his sentiments as a solitary wanderer, and especially so in these unshiny days of ours. Bitter but at peace with himself (or rather resigned to his fate, whatever ‘fate’ might mean), Rousseau’s contemplations remind us of those of the other hermit-philosopher-poets, EM Cioran and Fernando Pessoa. We are also reminded of Viktor Sjostrom’s character in Ingmar Bergamn’s powerful Wild Strawberries (1957), who is also a bitter man looking back at his past, laden with regrets. While there is a salvaging epiphany at the end of the film/road-movie of sorts (and much quiet humour – Bergman or Scandinavian style, if we could say so? – throughout the film – some of which Woody Allen later played up), it is a nicely dark and murky. This is one of our favourite works of art of all times that continues to haunt us all these years and lifetimes, to our death(s). As Rousseau expresses in Emile (published 1762): ‘Every attachment is a sign of insufficiency […] A truly happy being is a solitary being.’ As we draft ours, Rousseau’s pre-death message in the Reveries of a Solitary Walker enables us to feel a certain delirium – as much as despair and desperation:

WALK 1

Everything is finished for me on earth. People can no longer do good or evil to me here. I have nothing more to hope for or to fear in this world; and here I am, tranquil at the bottom of the abyss, a poor unfortunate mortal, but unperturbed, like God Himself.

A recent event as sad as it was unexpected has finally extinguished this feeble ray of hope and shown me that my earthly destiny is irrevocably fixed for all time. Since then, I have resigned myself utterly and recovered my peace of mind.

…realizing eventually that all my efforts were in vain and my self-torment of no avail, I took the only course left to me, that of submitting to my fate and ceasing to fight against the inevitable. This resignation has made up for all my trials by the peace of mind it brings me, a peace of mind incompatible with the unceasing exertions of a struggle as painful as it was unavailing.

Even physical suffering would take my mind off my misfortunes rather than adding to them. Perhaps the cries of pain would save me the groans of unhappiness, and the laceration of my body would prevent that of my heart.

Actual misfortunes have little effect on me; it is easy for me to accept those which I suffer in reality, but not those which I fear. My fevered imagination builds them up, works on them, magnifies them, and inspects them from every angle. They are far more of a torment to me imminent than present; the threat is far more worse than the blow. As soon as they happen, they lose all the terrors lent to them by imagination and appear in their true size. I find them far less formidable than I had feared, and even in the midst of my suffering I feel a sort of relief. In this state, freed from all further fear and from the anxieties of hope, I shall learn from mere habit to accept ever more easily a situation which can grow no worse; and as my awareness of it is dulled by time they can find no further way of reviving it. So much good my persecutors have done me by recklessly pouring out all the shafts of their hatred. They have deprived themselves of any power over me and henceforward I can laugh at them.

Everything external is henceforth foreign to me. I no longer have any neighbours, fellow-men, or brothers in this world. I live here as in some strange planet on to which I have fallen from the one I knew. All around me I can recognize nothing but objects which afflict and wound my heart, and I cannot look at anything that is close to me or round about me without discovering some subject for indignant scorn or painful emotion. Let me therefore detach my mind from these afflicting sights; they would only cause me pain, and to no end. Alone for the rest of my life, since it is only in myself that I find consolation, hope and peace of mind, my only remaining duty is towards myself and this is all I desire.

WALK 2

These hours of solitude and meditation are the only ones in the day during which I am fully myself and for myself, without diversion, without obstacle, and during which I can truly claim to be what nature willed.

Today there is more recollection than creation in the products of my imagination, a tepid languor saps all my faculties, the vital spirit is gradually dying down within me, my soul no longer flies up without effort from its decaying prison of flesh, and were it not for the hope of a state to which I aspire because I feel that it is mine by right, I should now live only in the past. Thus if I am to contemplate myself before my decline, I must go back several years to the time when, losing all hope for this life and finding no food left on earth for my soul, I gradually learnt to feed it on its own substance and seek all its nourishment within myself.

The country was still green and pleasant, but it was deserted and many of the leaves had fallen; everything gave an impression of solitude and impending winter. This picture evoked mixed feelings of gentle sadness which were too closely akin to my age and my experience for me not to make the comparison. I saw myself at the close of an innocent and unhappy life, with a soul still full of intense feelings and a mind still adorned with a few flowers, even if they were already blighted by sadness and withered by care. Alone and neglected, I could feel the approach of the first frosts and my failing imagination no longer filled my solitude with beings formed after the desires of my heart. Sighing I said to myself: What have I done in this world? I was created to live, and I am dying without having lived.

Let men and fate do their worst, we must learn to suffer in silence, everything will find its proper place in the end and sooner or later my turn will come.

WALK 3

Secluded meditation, the study of nature, and contemplation of the universe force a solitary person to search with tender concern for the purpose in everything he sees and the cause of everything he feels.

When death is already at the door, is it worth learning how we should have lived?

The sad truth that time and reason have revealed to me in making me aware of my misfortune, has convinced me that there is no remedy and that resignation is my only course. Thus all the experience of my old age is of no use to me in my present state, nor will it help me in the future.

Since the days of my youth I had fixed on the age of forty as the end of my efforts to succeed, the final term of my various ambitions. I had the firm intention, when I reached this age, of making no further effort to climb out of whatever situation I was in and of spending the rest of my life living from day to day with no thought for the future. When the time came I carried out my plan without difficulty, and although my fortune at the time seemed to be on the point of changing permanently for the better, it was not only without regret but with real pleasure that I gave up these prospects. In shaking off all these lures and vain hopes, I abandoned myself entirely to the nonchalant tranquillity which has always been my dominant taste and most lasting inclination. I quitted the world and its vanities, I gave up all finery–no more sword, no more watch, no more white stockings, gilt trimmings and powder, but a simple wig and a good solid coat of broadcloth–and what is more than all the rest, I uprooted from my heart the greed and covetousness which gave value to all I was leaving behind. I gave up the position I was then occupying, a position for which I was quite unsuited, and set myself to copying music at so much a page, an occupation for which I had always had a distinct liking.

All the sharpest torments lose their sting if one can confidently expect a glorious recompense, and the certainty of this recompense was the principal fruit of my earlier meditations.

WALK 5

Everything is in constant flux on this earth. Nothing keeps the same unchanging shape, and our affections, being attached to things outside us, necessarily change and pass away as they do. Always out ahead of us or lagging behind, they recall a past which is gone or anticipate a future which may never come into being; there is nothing solid there for the heart to attach itself to. Thus our earthly joys are almost without exception the creatures of a moment; I doubt whether any of us knows the meaning of lasting happiness. Even in our keenest pleasures there is scarcely a single moment of which the heart could truthfully say: ‘Would that this moment could last for ever!’ And how can we give the name of happiness to a fleeting state which leaves our hearts still empty and anxious, either regretting something that is past or desiring something that is yet to come? But if there is a state where the soul can find a resting-place secure enough to establish itself and concentrate its entire being there, with no need to remember the past or reach into the future, where time is nothing to it, where the present runs on indefinitely but this duration goes unnoticed, with no sign of the passing of time, and no other feeling of deprivation or enjoyment, pleasure or pain, desire or fear than the simple feeling of existence, a feeling that fills our soul entirely, as long as this state lasts, we can call ourselves happy, not with a poor, incomplete and relative happiness such as we find in the pleasures of life, but with a sufficient, complete and perfect happiness which leaves no emptiness to be filled in the soul….What is the source of our happiness in such a state? Nothing external to us, nothing apart from ourselves and our own existence; as long as this state lasts we are self-sufficient like God. The feeling of existence unmixed with any other emotion is in itself a precious feeling of peace and contentment which would be enough to make this mode of being loved and cherished by anyone who could guard against all the earthly and sensual influences that are constantly distracting us from it in this life and troubling the joy it could give us. But most men being continually stirred by passion know little of this condition, and having only enjoyed it fleetingly and incompletely they retain no more than a dim and confused notion of it and are unaware of its true charm. Nor would it be desirable in our present state of affairs that the avid desire for these sweet ecstasies should give people a distaste for the active life which their constantly recurring needs impose upon them. But an unfortunate man who has been excluded from human society, and can do nothing more in this world to serve or benefit himself or others, may be allowed to seek in this state a compensation for human joys, a compensation which neither fortune nor mankind can take away from him.

WALK 6

I have never been truly suited for civil society, where everything is annoyance, obligation, and duty, … my naturally independent temperament always made me incapable of the subjection necessary to anyone who wants to live among men.

There are types of adversity which elevate and strengthen the soul, but there are others which depress and crush it; such is the one of which I am a victim. If there had been the slightest leaven of evil in my soul, this adversity would have fermented it to excess and driven me into a frenzy, but it only succeeded in reducing me to inactivity. Unable to do good to myself or anyone else, I abstain from acting; and this state, which is only blameless because I cannot avoid it, makes me find a sort of satisfaction in abandoning myself completely and without reproach to my natural inclination. No doubt I go too far, since I avoid opportunities for action even when I think nothing but good can come from them. But knowing that I am not allowed to see things as they are, I refrain from judging by the appearances my enemies give to things, and however alluring the motives for action may seem, it is enough that they have been left within my grasp for me to be sure they are deceptive.

I have never believed that man’s freedom consists in doing what he wants, but rather in never doing what he does not want to do, and this is the freedom I have always sought after and often achieved, the freedom by virtue of which I have most scandalized my contemporaries.

WALK 7

Seeking refuge in mother nature, I sought in her arms to escape the attacks of her children. I have become solitary, or, as they say, unsociable and misanthropic, because to me the most desolate solitude seems preferable to the society of wicked men which is nourished only in betrayals and hatred.

WALK 8

In all the ills that befall us, we are more concerned by the intention than the result. A tile that falls off a roof may injure us more seriously, but it will not wound us so deeply as a stone thrown deliberately by a malevolent hand. The blow may miss, but the intention always strikes home.

Since by the light of reason I could see nothing but absurdities in the explanations I tried to give for everything that happened to me, I realized that, as all its causes and operations were unknown and incomprehensible to me, I should ignore them completely, that I should regard all the details of my fate as the workings of mere necessity, in which I should not seek to find any intention, purpose, or moral cause, that I must submit to it without argument or resistance since these were useless, that since all that was left to me on earth was to regard myself as a purely passive being, I should not waste the strength I needed to endure my fate in trying to fight against it. This was what I told myself. My reason and my heart assented, yet I could feel that my heart was not entirely satisfied. Whence came this dissatisfaction? I searched and found the answer: it came from my self-love, which, having waxed indignant against mankind, still rebelled against reason.

WALK 9

Happiness is a lasting state which does not seem to be made for man in this world. Everything here on earth is in a continual flux which allows nothing to assume any constant form. All things change round about us, we ourselves change, and no one can be sure of loving tomorrow what he loves today. All our plans of happiness in this life are therefore empty dreams. Let us make the most of peace of mind when it comes to us, taking care to do nothing to drive it away, but not making plans to hold it fast, since such plans are sheer folly. I have seen few if any happy people, but I have seen many who were contented, and of all the sights that have come my way this is the one that has left me most contented myself.

…if my pleasures are brief and few in number, it is also true that when they come they give me an intenser enjoyment than if I were more used to them. I ruminate on them so to speak, turning them over frequently in my memory, and few as they are, if they were pure and unmixed, they would perhaps make me happier than in my days of prosperity. In extreme poverty a little is enough to make one rich; a beggar is gladder to find one gold coin than a rich man to find a purse full of money. People would laugh if they could see how my soul is affected by the slightest pleasures…

It is only when I am alone that I am my own master, at all other times I am the plaything of all who surround me.


WE ARE STILL RAISING MONEY FOR OUR RUN FOR SHELTER AT THE 2011 NONDON MARATHON  NEXT SUNDAY- PLEASE HELP! ANY AMOUNT IS APPRECIATED!

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Mathematically-speaking, we SHOULD take 4 hours to run 42.1km. Non-mathematically-speaking, we may take 40 hours.

Reproduced from SAFRA Bay run 2009 results

How long will we take to complete 42.2km at the Nondon Marathon on 17 April 2011? We will finish, by hook or by crook or by crawling. But the million-pound (or £1500) question is, in what time? To be sure, every run is different, and every race – a particular competitive run session with a specific start and finish across a set route; a heightened run session – comes with its own sets of quirks. The variables are infinite (climate, route, scenery, traffic, fellow runners, clothes we wear, if the race is well-sign-posted, audience/spectator-support, number of yummmmmyyyyy jelly-babies [and Snicker bars] we manage to pop into our mouth en route at feeding stations, et al), but we can begin by examining our running and race history: (Go ahead and mock, spit, laugh at us, but you would have realised by now that we are painfully slow coaches, such slow runners we are that we are probably better off walking, but at least we have lasting power for the endurance race of our lifetimes…)

1) 2010 March: 10km race by the Friends of Medicin Sans Frontieres Nondon:  This was an easy race of 10km which we completed in 52 minutes, which works out to be a speed of 11.54km per hour (or 7.17 miles per hour), or a pace of  5 minutes 12seconds for every 1km (0.822 minutes per mile)  It began as a crisp early Spring morning but turned 8 degree celsius, so we were dressed in short-sleeved and long tights, although we were carrying the burden of stomach cramps (!!! TMI !!!). In this race, we raised money for the Medecins Sans Frontieres. We had been kidnapped before the run, was released on time by The Good Pirate.

2) 2010 September: 42.2km: Farnham Pilgrims’ Marathon, Surrey. This was our first ever full marathon, which we ‘accomplished’ (sic) in a disgraceful 5 hours 29 minutes! We have plenty of excuses, however: 1) it was off-road in a hilly terrain  – we stopped to WALK at a steep hill climb at a point (it was said that most runners had to add 30 minutes to any of their times for this race) 2) We had spent the entire summer running all over Nondon, in a bid to train for our first ever marathon. However, in the final 2 months, we were brought down by injury (tendonitis and shin splint), which came with us to Farnham. Yet we do not fret, and were delighted to have completed the race. All in all, it was a most wonderful experience, against the gorgeous and meaningful mise-en-scene that the pilgrims had once walked, the fellow runners a tremendous joy to be with, and beautifully organised. We also raised a weeeee bit of money for the Farnham hospices.

3) In a previous life: 2009 August, Singapore, 21km (13.1 miles) SAFRA Bay Run Half-Marathon: This was our first ever race since casually picking up running in January 2009 in a previous life, at the same time of still being chlorine addicts.  We took 2 hours 21 minutes – which is the amount of time taken by the world’s elite runners to complete FULL marathons!! However, we were not displeased, with the high humidity, and at 30 degree-celsius of the (paradisal) tropics. We are proud however of the fact that in our final 4km sprint, we managed to bypass 655 men and women (and yes, allowed 20 to bypass us). Running alongside more than 20,000 people of all size, shape, age and colour was also tremendously enjoyable. By default, happiness and pleasure are inevitably short-lived- but our entire 2 hours 21 minutes was a skyrocketing morphine-high. It was an extraordinary trip.

So. How on (google)earth would we fare on 17 April 2011?

1) For the first / last 450 days of our lives, we have been working hard at our running. Outside of a race, our comfortable pace is approximately 10kmh – 10.5kmh. At this pace, there is neither exertion nor discomfort. (Under artificial conditions, inside the gym, our average is around 10.5kmh – 12kmh, though this figure we should ignore, since it is climate-controlled, and we are running on machines that move nowhere, hence using different muscles of our body. The psychology of such locomotion differs from that outdoors as well)

2) Since February, we have been training longer distances (20km and above), but our fourth toe on our right feet has been harvesting a blister (!!! TMI !!!) This has never happened previously so we are slightly worried, wondering if we should go ahead and buy a new pair of shoes of a slightly larger size. Yet, already armed with three pairs of trainers, we do not want to buy another pair right now. Then there is also a new bone-like thing sticking out of our left feet recently, that prevents us from wearing any shoe without feeling pain. (!!! TMI !!!) Again this is new, and did not happen in our Summer training.

3) The past year of running means that our technique would have improved, but at the same time, we are aging as we speak.  We are juvenile at 430-days-old, but because we have only 1000 days in our lifespan, we are nearly middle-aged. While we come with the charms and beauties of a mature wine and even more mature blue cheese (as well as iron-will power, truckloads of stubbornness, and plenty of drive), we might not win a spring chicken in a photo-finish. We will come back to this issue of running and mortality in a separate post.

4) As anybody knows, there’s such a silly law called the law of diminishing returns. Whichever sillier eejit came up with it, we have no idea, but when it comes to a slowburning, longhaul endeavour as a long-distance run, no one is sparred from this law. We can get increasingly worn out and deriving less and less satisfaction from the run over hours and distances. And from experience, we know that we are excellent practitioners of the law. This can translate what should take 4 hours into to a pathetic epic 5 hours (first 10km takes 1 hour, because we are warming up and do not want to over-exert; for the next 10 km we dip a little, as we are still conserving our energy at 1 hour 10 minutes; then the 30th km takes 1 hour 20 minutes, and for the final 12km, we have the sudden epiphany that we have to get our arses moving, and hasten a little but alas it is too late as our glycogen-levels would have deteriorated so we complete it in 1 hour 30 minutes).

So there we have it. On 17 February Sunday, we may take anything from 4 hours, or, 40 hours.

But let us think of positive thoughts. Next year, in our final year of existence, we would like to sign up for the midnight sun run in Norway. How beautiful and hyperreal an experience it would be. And, with all that sunlight one cannot possibly sleep anyways, so why not go for a run. For a few hours, the duration of a sleep. We currently devote about 8 hours of exercise each week (at least an hour a day); training for a marathon means a minimum of 10 hours or exercise each week. We must not neglect our run in other dimensions, so this running about in Life 1.0 may be taking up just too much time. We decide that the half is the best distance for us, also since we can sustain happiness for a maximum of 2 hours at any one go. Anything beyond that, at 4-5 hours for instance, the law of diminishing return sets in and the dreaded dip, the hitting-of-wall happens. 10km races are too fast/short. Hence, we intend to take part in the 2012 Bath Half Marathon. With a companion.

WE ARE STILL TRYING TO RAISE MONEY FOR OUR RUN FOR SHELTER FOR THE 2011 NONDON MARATHON! DO LEND US A HAND! OR TOE! OR DOLE! OR DOUGH!

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In the chaosmos of RUNNING AGAINST and RUNNING AWAY: Our deliriouslydelicious 6am loops in myopicdarkness at Regents Fark. Alternatively, hitting the hamster wheel.


The first snow of Nondon, November 2010.

In the face of a snag, what can we do?

1) Our natural (insofar as there is such a thing as nature?) instinct is to fight it. Resist it. Put up a bloody good brawl and, if in the end we are nearly dead from the bloodiness, at least we have put up a good fight.

2) Yet, if fighting seems futile, and if it is wiser to not fight but fight by opting out, so be it. Rather than a sign of weakness, running away is a tactic of survival and can be a wise sign of strength, too. The Tarahumara Indians of North Mexico – superathletes capable of running ultradistances for days on nothing more than skimpy rubber sandals – first resisted the colonisers by running. The more danger encroached, the further and deeper they ran. As Bernd Heinrich observes (and reports of himself), (we) runners are guided by dreams and madness as much as we are by logic; stubbornness (the sisu that we see in the amazing flying Finns) and resilience as much as pragmatism.

In December, as Nondon experienced what has been repeatedly described as ‘unprecedented’ ‘arctic’ weather conditions, we ran into the conundrum of ‘running away from’ versus ‘running against’.  We were undecided if which was better (or the lesser evil), to fall in icy conditions outdoors (as we did in January 2011 in the Swiss alps while visiting Heidi, and on 17 December on our way to the opening of our exhibition), or to admit defeat and run indoors instead and risk falling off the treadmill (December 2009)? Which is a better fall? Which lousy choice is less lousy?

As 1.57m (Yes, when fully erect. Yes, back fully straightened. Yes, neck standing upright.) ex-tropical beings in a most recent life, our war with the Nondon weather looked like a farcical David-versus-Goliath mud-wrestling (or snow-sloshing) match. Yet, in our determination to raise two or ten fingers or twenty fingers and (callused) toes at the weather, we have been undertaking 10km dashes at Regents Fark at 6am, whenever the weather was clear. Being myopic, the darkness protects us from being fully awake and alert, but also grants us an other lens of lucidity, enabling us several orgasmically endorphin-filled sessions. Then, the first heavy snow fell in Nondon in late November, we were initially in denial, and continued to run outdoors. Wrapped up as Michelin Man, we treaded carefully and slowly. Did it feel good? NO, of course not. Running in layers and layers of heavy clothing will never be a comfortable option; neither is having to run watching every single step. In some senses, we could read that this sort of running as so compromised as to not do justice to the notion/spirit of running (do we hear shades of the pro-life versus pro-euthanasia debates here: better a bad quality but prolonged life, or one shortened  – perhaps while one is on top of one’s game – but lived to the full?).

Hence we decided that it was perhaps wiser that we stopped being obstinate in trying to outrun nature, but to let her do her job, or whatever it is that she desires or needs to do, and that we went for an alternative option. So, it has been the claustrophobic and soggilyventilated hamsterwheel in a gym for the wussy hamster. Outdoors, we have no problems whatsoever running 10-20km at a pop. On the treadmill, however, we sometimes struggle even with ONE kilometre. Yes. We are shocked too, and could not decide if we should laugh or cry (and use the tears to lubricate our psychological resistance to the machines)? Where has that inertia/animosity/fear come from?

Fortunately, that was then. The arctic conditions seem to have left Nondon, and we are back to our 6am (and lately, 5:30am, for our day does not feel begun unless/until we move our body) runs at our beloved Regents Fark. At the expense of paid gym membership, but feck it. Give us the great outdoors, anytime. (and save us from the disturbing phenomena of swinging ponytails in OFFENSIVELY LOUD west coast accents, trashy TV programmes, short men pumping iron, mouldy floors of showers). We take comfort in the darkness, as if the darkness protects us. On average, we meet (or rather, sense, or run into, and sometime bump into, given that we can’t really see them) about 15 runners (and about 8-15 cyclists, who go about in groups/herds, unlike us runners who go about [in life too?] necessarily [?] in solitude). We say neither ‘hello’ nor ‘good morning’; instead we are quietly work on, as if there is a tacit understanding that we are doing what we have to do. Of particular significance is an elderly (or simply beard-y? For, once again, being myopic, and especially so in the dark, we have no idea) man whose waist is tied to his labrador (or what looks likes of such a dog, for we are not able to differentiate dog-types, though we are certain that the most loathed of the canine family would be the chi*&%hua, which looks more like [somebody’s idea of] a joke. Except that it is unfunny). (We think/ assume it is a dog (?), although once again we have no way to confirm, unless we put on our glasses, but any extra thing we attach to ourselves is but a burden, and surely we do not need any burden, so we will have to take it that it is [or was] a dog.). A strong dog (and master) this labrador, or labrador-ish dog is, for it runs at a very strong and confident pace, every morning, leading his master forward. If we had a cat (THE BREATHTAKINGLY BEAUTIFUL BRITISH BLUE, FOR INSTANCE!!) we would train her to do the same for us. The weather has turned muggy, so much so that we have been sweating unseasonably more than usual, and the dry-wick shirts do not help.

Could we possibly use our excess(ive) sweat production to lubricate the hardship and human and inhumane suffering that is to come in the remaining 593 (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ONLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ALREADY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) days of our life?

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As we stuff our faces with stuffed birds/puds/sprouts/mulling about, shall we have a DISCOURSE? (RUNNING TO & FRO, from the Latin ‘discursus’)?

Hard at work (as if): reading, or rather, posing with books that we have ordered for the library. If we hold the books close enough, hopefully our skin will be able to absorb all the contents, swiftly. And paraphrase them enough to regurgitate in our writing, too, hopefully.

Before you complain that we have been less-than-diligent in our postings in the past couple of months, we must tell you that it is because we have been extremely hard at work writing something else, namely our grand 80,000-word fabulousness and sweetness of our thesis, which theorises our critical strategy of trans-dimensional running for our 21st century technologically-enabled multiverse.

To write, we have to read too, of course. Here are some pictorial evidence of us (LOOKING AS IF WE ARE VERY) hard at work, reading some of the books that we have ordered. We particularly enjoy running with Dr Bernd Heinrich in his Why We Run: A Natural History. Himself is a TOP marathon and ultramarathon runner (coming in as champion, at the age of 41, a race of 100km in 6 hours 30 minutes in 1981 in Chicago!!), award-winning biologist Dr Heinrich presents a dazzling story of why human beings, compared to our relatives in the animal kingdom, run. One of our favourite quotes is found on page 103. It is a conversation between the author and his friend, when the former ran 5-minutes faster than what the friend predicted.

As is usually the case in science, you make a prediction, and if it comes out close, you are happy because you’re potentially right with one idea, and if it comes out different, you’re closer to some other idea that you didn’t even think of before. That’s even better.

What a beautiful, powerful thought. And this comes from the perfectionist and overachiever of the writer-scientist-ultrarunner. To stray from an expectation is not a sign of defeat, but instead, a potentially exciting route of discovery into something that one didn’t expect, perhaps leading one to something else that is even more interesting than where one could have ventured.

Dr Heinrich’s writing is simple and clear, while also loaded with first-hand anecdotes (so this is not some armchair critic/theoryhead who only sits on their fatarses in their ivory towers and conceptualise about the world and the moons and the stars till the  cows come home, or as one of our favourite artists ever, the brilliant Groucho Marx, says in the 1933 cccclassssssiccccc Duck Soup, ‘I could dance with you till the cows come home. On second thoughts, I’d rather dance with the cows till you came home.‘) We are, frankly speaking, dogtired of all those highfalutin empty gibberish expounded by the socalled pureminds of the socalled academia, some of whom really are only capable of blowing pungent wind through their holycracks.

We are however disappointed with Christopher McDougall’s Born To Run, albeit its extremely exciting premise of learning to run ultra-distances from the humble and hidden tribe of the amazing Tarahumara Indians of Mexico, who have run all their lives, since they first ran away from the invading Spanish (what a poetic and empowering imagery!!).  What we find disagreeable however is ultrarunner-and-journalist McDougall’s writing style which has the irritating trying-hard-to-be-cute-and-oh-so-personal-first-person-narrative-smug-frockingfullofselfbelief-noironywhatsoever-chest-beating-we-are-the-world-we-rule-the-world-yayyayay-watch-us-we-feel-ohsofrockinggood-about-ourselves approach also neatly encapsulated in the American talk show which we quite absolutely cannot stand (unless, of course, if it is so very bad that it is very good, out & out excessively trashy The Jerry Springer ShowJerry!  Jerry! we chant, fists in the air and on other guests’ holy bodies).

Philosopher and runner Michael Austin was the one who drew our attention to, in his good (although could-be-better, if each essay by the different philosopher-runners wasn’t so short but was more developed) Running and Philosophy, the etymology of the word  ‘discourse’, which comes from the Latin discursus, and which refers to a running to-&-fro! What a poetic image. We have said this before, but we will say this again (because we keep getting asked!), but to all the snobs who still insist that walking is the only valid psychogeographical strategy, we say that you are too closed-minded, and that you really should try running (YES WE CHALLENGE YOU TO SWEAT IT OUT AND GET YOUR ‘PUREMINDS’ AND FATARSES MOVIN’!) to see how it works. Alan Turing would go for a 2-3hour run midday, to run away problems from that he faced at work; yet, it was in the middle of such a run that he conceptualised the beginnings of the modern computer.

Now, what better synthesis of the mind-body-technology-imagination could you get??

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Walk the talk / run the dmc: WE PAID UP FOR OUR 18948km NONDON-SAO-PAULO OF CARBON FOOTPRINTS WITH OUR FOOT+FOOT (=FEET) RUNNING 189.48km IN OCTOBER.

Rundown of our runs, 3-30 October, as documented by our Garmin Forerunner 405.

As you know (you do, don’t you?), we visited Sao Paulo, Brazil last month to present a paper of our of-and-out-of-this-and-other-worlds theory, Trans-dimensional Running for our Lives! A Rough Guide To A Critical Strategy for our technologically-layered Multiverse, at Soft Borders, Upgrade! Before we flew, we also came up with a plan to make up for our carbon footprints from the return journey, and decided that to pay back for our 18948km of travelling, we had to run 189.48km in Life 1.0 .

We are happy to announce that we reached our target on 30 October. From 3 – 30 October, we ran a total of 191.11km. This includes, unfortunately, one week of NO RUNNING while we were in Brazil for several reasons. So, in reality, the task was accomplished in 17 days, which works out to be an average of 11.24km each time we ran during this period.

Our next flight is a long-haul flight which is at least 10,000km one way. If we go by the same rules we have set up for our Nondon-Sao-Paulo journey, of moving 2 decimal places of a given distance, we deduce that we will have to run at least 200km, to make up for our dirty flight. Again we will aim to do that within the period of one month.

While we are at it, we want to tell you of our plan that we have been harbouring for the past 11 months of our existence, since we came into being: it consist of 2 runs in a certain city-state. One is a run running North-South (22.5km) of the country, and the other running West-East (41.8km) of the country. The former translates to slightly more than a half-marathon, which we can estimate we can run within approximately 2 hours and 10 minutes (and hopefully less) under humid conditions, the other a full-marathon, which we estimate taking us 5 hours, or less, hopefully. With these two runs, Kaidie, the partially-imaginary figure, runs the entire country. Read this statement in any way you wish. We will complete this exercise wthin our lifetime, this life. When we do realise this endeavour, do recall that you read it here, first, my Dear Reader.

While we are at it, some of you may also recall a stubborn shin splint and tendonitis that we experienced for a couple of months over Summer, on our right leg. You may be pleased to know that they are not so lonely any more, as we have introduced them to our left leg as well. We now have very well-balanced limps (and Lives). As they say, life goes on, or rather, Lives go on.

Our GPS track (in green) records of our locomotion in Sao Paulo, Brazil, with the image on the right as the most detailed.

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ONE DAY IN THE LIFE OF KAIDIE IN A MINUTE: 7 September 2010 Nondon.

What did Kaidie do on 7 September 2010, Tuesday in Nondon? Or rather, what did we see when we were going about our business on 7 September 2010 Tuesday in Nondon, our favourite city on earth and beyond? Wearing a small camera on our chest (which has been lent to us by Urbantick of the Centre of Advanced Spatial Analysis of University College Nondon), this is a 1-minute time-lapse record of what happened that day, including: walking amongst large crowds in the streets as tube workers went on a strike in Nondon (as usual); attending a panel discussion – with Stelarc in-world in Second Life; presenting our 50-minute performance AUTHOR slash ACTOR slash AUDIENCE at the DRHA conference at the Brunel University; travelling to and from Uxbridge.

And, with all due respect to the dwellers and denizens of Uxbridge, no, we would not/never/ever want to live in Uxbridge in a house with a spouse/family/kids/pets/cars. No thanks very much.

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HAPLESS STEVEDORE IS A WINNER OF OUR LONDONER QUIZ 2! YOU can be a winner too!

The following is a set of response we received from Hapless Stevedore to our LONDON QUIZ 2. THANK YOU Hapless for the terrific feedback! Thanks for your advice too! We will check out London Barrier, for instance, and thank you for naming us your favourite Fictional Character/Personality of London. All your answers are brilliant no doubt, but it is because of this single outstanding response, that makes you a winner of the quiz. Here, we have attached a photograph that we took at one of our favourite roads on London, Farringdon Road. We hope that you like it!

As for the rest of YOU, DO participate in the rolling/running quiz, and you can be a winner too, and receive another SECRET PRIZE from us! Our secret prize is so secretive that we cannot reveal it just yet…

SO , HERE ARE HAPLESS’ RESPONSES:

1. WHAT DO YOU DO DURING WEEKENDS IN LONDON?

Walk around dreamily looking at things, get asked the way by strangers, get lost. Get home again somehow.

2. WHAT ARE SOME OF THE MEANINGFUL PURSUITS FOR KAIDIE IN LONDON? WHAT RECOMMENDATIONS HAVE YOU GOT FOR KAIDIE TO DO IN LONDON?

Arise early with coffee and bacon sandwiches, go see the Thames Barrier rise from the waves.

3.HOW AND WHERE IN LONDON DO YOU WANT TO DIE (WHEN YOU DIE)? Tip: Mugged, at UCH(‘s waiting list) with swine flu, run over by the tube, hit by a taser gun, etc.

I imagine I will be mugged by a Euston Zombie, taken to UCH where I am infected by swine flu, stagger out of the ward to try have a cigarette at the very moment that a disgruntled tube train emerges from mouth of Euston Square station running me over as it careers south, staggering back into the hospital to get even more medical treatment (I love it!) I am hit by a taser gun wielded by red-eyed Peelers mistaking me for another of the Euston Zombies out to lunch on human flesh.

By this point I die happily, knowing that if life is unfair, death is just as bad.

So, Euston Road, outside UCH tasered in a case of mistaken identity after a series of calamities.

4. WOULD YOU WISH TO BE BACK IN LONDON THE NEXT TIME ROUND? (IN YOUR NEXT LIFE, THAT IS)

Yes

5. IF YOU WERE THE MAYOR OF LONDON, WHAT IS THE FIRST THING THAT YOU WOULD CHANGE?

I would give free transport (Oyster, Congestion Charge, the Works!) to all flamboyantly dressed people.

6. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE FILM/BOOK/SONG/ARTISTIC REPRESENTATION OF LONDON, AND WHY?

Oooooooh, so many delicious tings.

Frenzy by Hitchcock. Sailing ships moored by Tower Bridge and Covent Garden as a flower market.

Plus, lots and lots of ‘orrible murder!

7. WHO IS YOUR FAVOURITE LONDON PERSONALITY/FICTITIOUS CHARACTER, AND WHY?

Kaidie Nondon. Because she is both a personality and fictitious and she was and is unexpected.

8. DO YOU DRINK LONDON’S TAP WATER? WHY / WHY NOT?

Yes. Unfiltered and straight from the tap.

Why? Why not? There are no health benefits, or even, most of the time, flavour benefits to drinking bottled water. It costs a lot and you have to carry it home from the supermarche. Why would I drink anything but good old London Tap?

9. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE FESTIVAL/HOLIDAY IN LONDON? WHERE DO CELEBRATIONS TAKE PLACE?

Every night we celebrate the end of the working day.

Every Friday we celebrate the end of the working week.

This takes place in a pubilc house, eg the Dog and Duck or a bar, eg Bar Italia. Often it takes place at home. The end of the working week is my favourite celebration.

10. WHERE WOULD YOU BE/ WHAT WOULD YOU BE DOING DURING THE 2012 OLYMPICS?

I will travelling in foreign lands. I will be travelling through Nepal, China, Vietnam and aim to be in Singapore on the closing day so that I will be on the opposite side of the world from Kaidie. That day I will bake a cake.

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Kaidie’s Rough Guide to Non-Nondon Cities: Sao Paulo: DEMONS slash GODS slash TOP slash BOTTOM

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As we fly 18,948km Nondon-Sao Paulo (return), WE WILL RUN 189.48km IN LIFE 1.0 BY 7 NOVEMBER TO MAKE UP FOR OUR CARBON FOOTPRINTS (yes we are wussy by moving a couple of decimal points, but better a pathetic gesture than none??)

As you know (do you? did you?), we are flying to Sao Paulo this weekend to participate in Soft Borders: 4th Upgrade! International Conference. In this gathering of artists, curators and academics from 30 countries, we will be making a 20-minute presentation of our fabulouslyfeetstompinglyheartstoppingmindblowing theory, Trans-Dimensional Running For Our Lives! A Rough Guide To A Critical Strategy For Our Technologically-Layered Multiverse Today. Seasoned (ahem) and weather-beaten (ahem) world- and out-of-the-world- travellers that we are, this will be the very first time that we visit ‘that part of the world’. So, our Dear Conspirators of Pleasure, should you have any tips (Where would be interesting places to run? What to eat? What to drink? Whom to meet? What to do? What to say? How to say? etc. But unfortunately, no, we are not able to drop by at Rio for the famous beaches and silicone…) about the trip, do let us know! And, as usual, if indeed your advice is so amazing as to afford us an amazing experience or two, we will create and publish a post here to share with everyone!

As trans-dimensional runners, we would have liked to fully practice and live what we preach, of course. Nonetheless, for us to run all the way from our favourite city on earth and beyond (thus far), Nondon, to Brazil, would take a while. At 9474km one way and a grand frolicking 18,948km return (!!!), it would take – to put it mildly- ages. Recall now that we live only for 1000 days, and we have only 695 (!!!!!!!!!!!ALREADY!!!!!!! Time flies whether or not we are having fun, however we define ‘fun’, or not) days left. so for us to run to Brazil and back, we would bust our given duration many times over, and be fropped left right centre.*

*It would be appropriate at this point in time for us to have a reality check and undertake some scientific calculations: Someone at our recent ARTSingapore gig asked us how much we have run in the past 305 days of our existence. Good question, we thought. We know that we run an average of approximately 60km a week – sometimes more, sometimes less. On some days, we have 5km quickies, of speed training (we say ‘speed’, but we are pulling [y]our leg[s], as we all know by now that when it comes to running we don’t/can’t do hit-and-run quickies, unless you release an repugnantlyyelpingly ridiculousness of a ‘dog’ of a chihuahua behind us, or, ahead of us, a glass of crisp bubbly, but otherwise, we will not/can not sprint, and our running is no where near the word ‘speed’ and its variations – we do endurance and go the whole length for hours and kilometres [for instance, 1 kilometre per hour], but we simply just don’t Bolt, sorry) on the treadmill or elsewhere, and on others, we run outdoors for approximately 10-20 km. To deduce that we have run approximately a total of 2500km in the past 300 days should not be all that far from the truth, which works out to be an average of 8.3333km per day). All that said, we must confess that some days we do not run, but run off instead to conduct our illicit and addictive affair with an old and very brilliant flame, chlorine. (By definition, any affair would taste sweet because they are affairs [whether or not the affairs themselves are of any good]; illicit affairs are even sweeter, and intrinsically and necessarily so, simply because of their illicitness… Hence, in spite of our vocation/mission of trans-dimensional running in this life, our ongoing stubborn dalliance with swimming in madmade pools…)

Several of your would recall a previous trip that we undertook, to visit our Facebook Friend, the legendary Heidi, in Heidiland (YES HEIDILAND EXISTS), Switzerland, during our 3rd-lifer-In-Residency in Winterthur. The return journey between Nondon-Zurich was 1550km, and after several days of wrecking our brains, we worked out a sophisticated and sustainable system of a means to compensate for our dirty carbon footprints. We understand that not all of you are as mathematically able as we are, so, to explain it in very simple means for you, it suffices to say that our system involves the movement of the decimal point to a position that would render the distance run-able for us, within a decent period of time.

Now, our Dear Fellow Runners, do understand that decency is the governing concept here- for our ‘system’ of repayment of our carbon footprints has to be sustainable and do-able. Running 18,948km would have taken us AT LEAST 1894 days if we run an average of 10km a day, which is 894 days over and above our lifespan (and we have already spent 305 days). Running 1894.8km would still take us about 189 days or 6 months. Also, we are currently in discussion with Japanese art workers about a trip in December/January/February to Asia as part of a project, which would cost at least 10,000 km – ONE WAY. As already argued in January when we undertook our trip to Switzerland, we had already acknowledged that this is but a gesture, and there is no thing big enough we can ever, ever do to compensate for our continual slow smothering of the earth. Apart from having vowed from day one (actually day zero, many life cycles ago) not to create mini-mes to add even more wrongs to all the wrongs that are already happening and all the wrongs that we are already committing, we are also cutting short our lives, and making us put in physical effort every time fly. We have heard of some other gestures such as making donations to have trees planted whenever one flies, but we are uncertain of the impact of such a deed – it does not hurt those with deep pockets and merely buys them out of their guilt (as Zizek has eloquently and sweatily articulated elsewhere). Insofar as all gestures are vain, our tactic of running to repay for our carbon footprints amounts to not much (if anything) either, but as it requires one to put in slightly more physical effort (other than the physical effort of clicking a button to agree to donate money to plant a virtual tree and alleviate one’s guilty conscience), it certainly makes one (us for instance) think twice about flying. And we speak as guiltyfrockers who absolutely adore being in mid-air in large machines, suspended in time, space, cultures, nations.

As we can’t spend the rest of our lives to pay for our Nondon-Brazil return journey, we will move not one but TWO decimal points, to run a total of 189.48km by the end of this month. We begin this repayment from 3 October, when we properly resumed our running (after resting for 2 weeks on our laurels and gloating in the glory of our completion of our first Life 1.0 marathon). So far, over the first 7 days, we had covered 84.27km. Note that although we had had some lovely walks (and a funny dip in Thames!) with some of you during this time, they are not counted, as we will only consider running, and of distances above 5km at any one time. We have 15 days left to run the remaining 100km or so, so we’d better get our  magnificent inertia and monumental butts moving.

Watch this space for our updates, and cheer us on. Or, go right ahead to mock and boo us for being such a wuss, but we are trying, alright?

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PARTLY IMAGINARY CHARACTERS THAT WE ARE, OUR BRUISES ARE FOR REAL: An ongoing catalogue of our Miss Haps (+insults to our injuries). Having come thus far, we will still do our best this Sunday. Fingers (and eyes, and toes) crossed. Watch this space. Don’t move (for we will).

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CAN WE GET OUT OF THIS CIRCLE, OR ARE WE BACK TO SQUARE ONE? The Bras Basah Station permanent public art work post #3.

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WHERE DOES KAIDIE DO HER WORLDCHANGINGearthshatteringTEETHCLENCHING WRITING? Nondon on the run: Summer 2010 #2

I am certain that by now, you, My Dear Collaborator, are on no uncertain terms the level of our unsurpassable intelligence. That said, we decide that even for a near-impeccable being, there is always room for self-improvement, in this Life 3.0 of ours. In the attempt to look and, indeed, be(come) brainier by way of osmosis and association, we have been running about the Reading Rooms in the British Library this summer. Oh, we feel sehr brainy. (And yes, what a fabulous summer it has been! We can’t help but clap and smile and slap our thunderandlightning thighs in smug satisfaction. Well done us!)

Given the gravely serious nature of the work that we undertake at the BL (is any body smiling in any of these pictures??) these expeditions are generally uneventful, except that we dropped our Garmin Forerunner 405 GPS device sometime in May, or rather, it decided to slip off our wrist, as the strap was broken. Apparently, someone picked it up and returned it to Security. We were lucky that it was the British Library and not, say, the zoo, a pub, public loo, childcare centre (how all the terrible kids would have trampled on, or even eaten the device! Luckily we do not visit such nightmarish places and meet screamy spoilt tots with mini-me-s!!), swimming pool, or our Fark. Our saviour must have been some old (0r pretend-old- have you met those men who are not yet middle-aged but dress up to be such, in tweed jackets, brown shoes and full beards – as if looking middle-aged lends them authority or wisdom? Perhaps we should try this too, in case only hanging out at the BL reading rooms does not suffice), wealthy academic type on high moral grounds, or an ignorant prick who thought that that was a ‘mere’ ‘watch’.

As several of you know, Kaidie is a guinea pig of a ground-shaking, earth(s)-shattering, mind-boggling, world(s)-changing, nostrilflaring thesis, (Trans-dimensional) Running for Our Lives! A Rough Guide. This is a 80,000-word paper (and book, someday) that we have been working on the past 11 months. We have been born as a case study of that thesis. So far we have about 15,000 sturdy words done, but we have also written more than 150,000 in the past year that may never, ever see any public light (and we are NOT talking about anything from this amazing running log / travel blog!). So, 2 parallel lives / works: of embodying and living out for 1000-days as a trans-dimensional runner, and theorising our grand thesis of ‘trans-dimensional running’ as a critical strategy to run our 21st century technologically-layered multiverse, at the same time. Although there are rich overlaps and interplays, and that there is much writing that already occurs on this site, that of the thesis is dead straight and bloody serious, with clear lines of argument running through. Not all that easy for a non-linear thinker… Each also should to be self-sufficient and self-standing. It would have been easy to do one or the other – sit on our fatarses and fantasise something that works out perfectly on paper, or focus on being a strong practitioner, which is (relatively) easy as chickpeas and frogfleece – and decadently fun and glam as well. The challenge/trick of this game is the dialogue/quarrel of the two. So that is where we are running: in the chaosmos of practice/theory, embodiment/detachment, actor/author/audience at the same time.  Dot dot dot (ellipsis). To be continued.
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SOMEONE IS BRIBING KAIDIE WITH £2.50 FOR EVERY KM SHE RUNS (or crawls)!! SPONSOR KAIDIE IN HER FIRST LIFE 1.0 MARATHON and WE MIGHT DEVOTE AN ENTIRE POST FOR YOU! (Yes we are that mercenary) #2

Chin Hwee Tan has offered to donate £2.50 to the Rotary Charities for every kilometre we complete at the Farnham Pilgrim Marathon! This means that on average we will earn £2.50 for every 5 minutes 30 seconds we run; in another words, 45.45454545 pence every 60 seconds, as we plant (AND REMOVE) one foot in front of the other. Over the course of 42km, we will collect a grand total of £105 from Chin Hwee!! (On race day however, the money will come much, much harder  to earn, for we will be running offroad. Having been spoilt park and pavement runners, running on uneven ground will slow us down drastically. We have been nursing a shin splint and tendonitis, but we continue practising as we speak. So far, we have run up to 30km for 4 times. The next challenge is to go up to 35-42km, although monotony and physical exhaustion is what we are teaching ourselves to fight…) THANK YOU very much Chin Hwee! (This is not the first time Chin Hwee is contributing to Kaidie’s effort – he had previously sponsored our 10km run for the Medecins Sans Frontieres!)

CONTEXT:

As you know (YOU DO, AND YOU DID, AND I KNOW THAT YOU DO AND DID, ALL 700 OF UNIQUE YOU-s WHO CLICK ON THIS SITE DAILY! NOW IS THE TIME TO COME FORWARD AND BE COUNTED, SO THAT WE CAN PUT A FACE TO YOUR NUMBER!!!), we are running our first ever Life 1.0 marathon on the historical Pilgrim’s Route, in the Farnham Pilgrim’s Marathon in Surrey, in 3 weeks. We have begun training in the past 4 months. We decide that while/since we are at it, we wish to make it worthwhile for others as well. We wish to raise money for the Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice and other Rotary charities. We are now aiming for around £200. It goes without saying that we would appreciate any amount. Having said that, it is certainly fine too if you decide to splash out £100, £1000 or more at a go. Please, do not be shy – if you can, please do (re-)distribute your wealth! In return, we will thank you in this blog (and the evil Facebook, and Twitter, etc) should you make a donation!  We will also put in extra effort in our training, to make sure that we finish the race, and finish it in not too indecent a time. Currently, we have collected approximately £140. THANK YOU VERY MUCH, CHIN HWEE, GREG and JAMES! Over the weekend, our ex-kidnapper, The Good Pirate, aka Chutha Indigo, aka Chuthatip Achavasmit has also made a nice donation! – her second since our Medecins Sans Frontieres effort! THANK YOU CHUTHA!!

HOW TO DONATE:

Note that if you are a UK taxpayer, every £1 you donate will be made up to £1.25 by H. M. Revenue and Customs!! Unfortunately, there is no online button to click donate for this run. Hence, if you are keen to make a donation, please contact us now <dislocation@3rdlifekaidie.com>. What we could do is to collate the monies and pay the organisers (IF YOU TRUST US?). In this case, we will tell you how you can pay us (hard cash, electronic bank transfer or cheque). Being such accountable and highly responsible beings that we are, we will publish the filled-up form shown above (but with your personal details protected, of course, if you wish), after we have confirmed the amounts we are receiving. Alternatively, you can draw out a cheque payable to: ‘The Rotary Club of Farnham Weyside’ directly, and let us know. Whichever method fits you. NO EXCUSES NOW, my dear Readers!

NEXT UPDATES:

Look out for the next posts with updates about the Farnham Pilgrim’s Marathon. In the next weeks leading up to race day, we will be supplying details about our fundraising effort and progress (or REGRESS, as it resembles currently…) The 42km is part of the pilgrim’s route! Which is one of the reasons we have chosen this for our first ever Life 1.0 marathon. We will be arriving a day before the race, to walk a small part of the route, to get ourselves familiarised (this is also our first time in Surrey!). As a nod to Chaucer’s wonderful Canterbury Tales, we are sewing our donkey costume and braying each time we our shin screams.

Our 3rd and 4th 30km runs in yellow- at our usual Regents Fark, and Hyde Fark. If you are keen, you could run with us – in the mirror-image of the purple path. We might run into each other at approximately one single point, around Great Portland Street tube station. See you sooner / later. We are th one with a lousy painful gait. Go on, laugh at us, but throw us some money first.

** Currently one of the top competing films in the War of Films contest with 110 votes: CLAUDIA TOMAZ’S film about KAIDIE AND HER MEANING OF LIFE 3.0. VOTE NOW!** Vote by clicking on + sign at the top of video player. **Don’t forget to vote for Episode 2, Run Kaidie Run, too!**

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BLACKED OUT ENDS THIS SATURDAY! MISS AND LIVE TO REGRET.

Thank you for coming to the opening of Blacked Out last Thursday! NE7, a sound artist, performed for the evening. This is a group show that we are participating, curated by curator-educator-artist Jennifer Hankin, who is pictured here placing LED-lit balloons at the entrance with fellow exhibiting artist, Lisa Metherell. Thank you Jennifer, Mr Hankin, Faye, and all other artists for the exhibition!

To complement the ‘underground’ theme of the show – given that it takes place in an arch – we shared a work that features a character from a parallel life, ‘Desyphus’, underwater. Is she sinking? Is she afloat? Is she caught in a conundrum, as it were, in time and space in a 3-minute digital loop? This work is an edited extract of a chapter from a 29-chapter large-scale permanent projection in the Bras Basah subway station, located in the centre of the Arts and Heritage District in Singapore, commissioned by the Land Transport Authority of Singapore. We will be talking more about this work in the weeks to come.

Do come and catch this and works by 8 other artists at Blacked Out! Hurry, for it ends this Saturday.

** Currently one of the top competing films in the War of Films contest with 100 votes: CLAUDIA TOMAZ’S film about KAIDIE AND HER MEANING OF LIFE 3.0. VOTE NOW!** Vote by clicking on + sign at the top of video player. **Don’t forget to vote for Episode 2, Run Kaidie Run, too!**

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HITS & MISSES, FITS & KISSES: Let’s agree not to run into each other, but won’t you let us take us for a ride? GAME FOR A COLLABORATION WITH US ON OUR EPIC QUIXOTIC QUEST?

The trans-dimensional runner of this quixotic life has at any one time one foot on the ground, pragmatic/rational/grounded in sturdily hardcore realism, and the other airborne, in cuckoo land and blue skies, with extra-terrestrial visionary eyes on each (swollen) toe, taken with skyscraper-tall mountains of heartattacky salt.

In this Web 2.0 Do-It-With-Others storytelling exercise, we have been privileged to have undertaken several collaborations with you, in our quest for the Meaning of Life 3.0. Here is an other idea for a collaboration (first conceived in early 2010):

As it is, we have not met 99.782 per cent of you, given that our interaction has been only in Life 2.0, ie, via the channels of this running blog, Facebook, Youtube, GPSies, Twitter and so on – and our imagination, of course. Also, given that we are partly an imaginary creation, meeting in real life is possibly an unimaginable task. (That said, we do not think that encounter in one dimension is of lesser or more significance than an other) In this idea of a project, to make the point that we want to maintain or create a critical distance between us, let us go out of our way to deliberately not meet in Life 1.0. The way to go about doing this is that one person shares her routine over a prescribed period of time. The other person – let us call them the/an ‘anti-stalker’ – will journey on the same route, but intentionally missing the previous person, by a few minutes/moments/metres/centimetres.

The thrill/beauty/cruelty/point of the game is to come so very close to have nearly met – but to just stop short of actually encountering the other. Afterwards, the pair could compare their GPS tracks and find out and plot, point by point, by exactly how much they have missed each other. (And of course, this sharing can be done remotely). As a consequence, one or both parties can derive (perverse / poetic) pleasure from the fact that they could theoretically have been in the same time and space, and could have had an encounter, but willfully and precisely do not. The deliberate orchestration of a denial of a run-in is the point of this project. Hence, we will never come face to face and whisper ‘Hi!’, ‘Nice to meet you!’, ‘Nice to meet you again!’, ‘And who are you?’; one may come close enough to catch a whiff of the other, or sneak a peek of the other’s shadow, or catch a dying footprint, but / and that is about it.

The game can be more fun if more participate. An orgy, not of presence, but absence, with participants who are missing – although we will hardly miss one another.

The great thing about this project is that it is of course hardly original, as many of us are already accomplished practitioners in some degree or an other, but, my Dear Conspirators of Pleasure, do you not think that it will be infinitely (more) enjoyable should we make this a studied and planned collaboration/game, with set parameters to play?

So, are you game? (Ah, the wonders of technology, to allow us to indulge, stretch and realise such fantasies…)

** Currently #5 in the War of Films contest: CLAUDIA TOMAZ’S film about KAIDIE AND HER MEANING OF LIFE 3.0. VOTE NOW!** Vote by clicking on + sign at the top of video player. ** Don’t forget to vote for Episode 2, Run Kaidie Run, too!**

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INTERMISSION: RUNNING AWAY FROM NONDON FOR A DAY OR TWO. WHERE TO?

Hair 6 June 2010, split till Kaidie's end (uncut 12.12.2009 - 09.09.2012, after Tehching Hsieh)

In Life 1.0, Kaidie lives in Nondon. Yet, as we know, any peripetetic runner must deny herself allegiances, and must attach herself to the ethos of non-attachment. Instead, she traverses multiple terrains at the same time, double-triple-crossing, happily crisscrossing her eyes, splitending her hair and curling her toes while dipping curly fries in pig’s cheeks at the same time. So, while Kaidie always insists that she loves Nondon (and that Nondon loves her?), every so often, she must run away from her, to an other place in Life 1.0 that is non-Nondon, non-non-London. We love the city, but the task of the trans-dimensional runner is to resist liking any one place or thing too much. Also, it is Summer just now. Kaidie and her all-consuming love affair with Nondon could do with a little break.

Hence, our Dear Reader, where can Kaidie run away to, for just a day trip, this Summer? Somewhere nearby, but somewhere that looks/sounds/smells/feels different enough from our lovely Nondon. A different terrain to run, with a different scenary, that would give Kaidie a different gait and different rhythm of breathing, and to urge – ever so gently – that stubborn flu of 3 weeks to please leave her system, if not for good, for a little while.

Kaidie recalls a particularly invigorating Summer in a previous life, during which she spent a month in Suomenlinna, in Helsinki, Finland. The weather was extremely crisp, dry and sunny, the flat splendidly spacious and bright (Kaidie was retrospectively told that that was an especially brilliant Nordic Summer). Upon arrival, she was filled with a dread, assuming at once that as a lifelong urban denizen across many lifespans, the fortress island would be unbearable and boring. What arrogance. For, within a couple of days, Kaidie began a month-long routine of walking along the coasts for hours at length, as well as exploring the many tunnels. Although a tiny island, the place opened up the more Kaidie walked it, as if an endless Escher print full of surprising rabbit holes. She would return to the studio to type some notes with no particular intention. In the heady mixture of liqourice ice-cream, squeaky cheese, canons facing generations of enemies, picnics at sloping hills, dipping into the sea, rocking in ferries, blond hair, blue eyes, green eyes, blue-green eyes, and midnight suns, the seeds of Kaidie’s current life, and life story, and task, were planted.

This, of course, was before Kaidie became ‘Kaidie’.

Foam with (foamy) memory. What does it recall? What does it forget? What does it selectively memorise?

Travelling to Stockholm from Helsinki on the trashy Viking Line that Summer, Kaidie recalled Ingmar Bergman’s Summer With Monika (1953). (Kaidie’s favourite work of the great auteur, however, is the shattering Wild Strawberries). This summer, one of Kaidie’s virtual running buddies, James Odling-Smee, tells Kaidie about another Summer with Monika, by Roger McGough (Liverpool, 1967). That summer, Kaidie’s hair was slightly longer than it is now. After she left Suomenlinna, to return home, or ‘home’, she had much of it cut.

In the spirit of summer, with Monika, Monikas, in Stockholm, Suomenlinna, Liverpool, London, Non-London, Nondon, Non-Nondon, Non-non-London, 1953, 1967, 2006, 2010, we reprint McGough’s poem here.

Summer With Monika

They say the sun shone now and again
but it was probably cloudy with far too much rain.
They say the greatest train robbery in history took place,
probably students,
who else wants to steal a train.
They say cabinet ministers and osteopaths
were particularly vulgar about this time,
they say babies were born,
married couples made love,
often with each other
and people died, sometimes violently.
They say it was an average, ordinary, moderate,
run-of-the-mill, common-or-garden summer,
but it wasn’t.
For I locked a yellow door
and I threw away the key
and I spent summer with Monica
and Monica spent summer with me.
Unlike everybody else we made friends with the weather,
most days the sun called and sprawled all over the place,
or the wind blew in as breezily as ever
and ran its fingers through our hair.
But usually it was the moon that kept us company.
Some days we thought about the sea-side
and built sandcastles on the blankets
and paddled in the pillows
or swam in the sink,
and played with the shoals of dishes.
Other days we went for long walks around the table
And picnicked on the banks of the settee.
Or just sun-bathed lazily in front of the fire
Until the shilling set on the horizon.
We danced a lot that summer
bosa nova-ed by the bookcase,
or Madisoned instead,
Hulli-gullied by the oven,
or did the twist in bed.
At first we kept birds in a transistor box to sing for us,
but sadly they died,
we being too embraced in each other to feed them.
But it didn’t really matter
because we made love songs with our bodies.
I became the words and she put me to music.
They say it was just like any other summer,
but it wasn’t.
For we had love and each other and the moon for company,
when I spent summer with Monica
and Monica spent summer with me.

Ten milk bottles standing in the hall,
ten milk bottles up against the wall,
next door neighbour thinks we’re dead,
hasn’t heard a sound he said,
doesn’t know we’ve been in bed,
the ten whole days since we were wed.
No one knows and no one sees
we lovers doing as we please
but people stop and point at these
ten milk bottles a-turning into cheese.
Ten milk bottles standing day and night,
ten different thicknesses and different shades of white.
Persistent carol singers without a note to utter
silent carol singers,
a-turning into butter.
Now she’s run out of passion
and there’s not much left in me
so maybe we’ll get up and make a cup of tea.
then people can stop wondering what they’re waiting for
those ten milk bottles a queuing at our door.

I have lately learned to swim
and feel more at home in the ebb and flow
of your slim rhythmic tide
than in the fully dressed,
couldn’t care less
restless world outside.
You squeeze my hand and cry a little
You cannot comprehend the raggle taggle of living
and think it unfair that death
should be the only one
who knows what he’s doing.
You are afraid of the big bad dark
which loiters in our room
the night it prowls about the yard
the wind howls in distress
The Tom-moon peeps through the window
waiting for the table to undress.
It will soon be tomorrow
there’s nothing to fear
You whisper,
‘ever leave me?’
and put your tongue in my ear.
Sssshhhhh…….
don’t open it,
it can only be
the enemy.
____________

Said I trusted you, spoke too soon
heard of your affair with the man in the moon,
You say that it’s all over, then if you’re right
why does he call at the house every night.

Once I paid the piper and called the tune,
but one afternoon returning home early from the office
I found you in bed with the piper.
You call the last waltz
and now I dance sadly out of your life.

Monica who’s been eating my porridge
while I’ve been away?
My Quaker oats are nearly gone, what have you got to say?
Someone’s been at the whisky,
taken the jaguar keys
and Monica another thing
who’s trousers are these.
I love and trust you darling
can’t really believe you’d flirt
but there’s a strange man under the table
wearing only a shirt.
There’s someone in the bathroom,
someone behind the door,
the house is full of sexy men,
Monica,
Don’t you love me anymore?

You are a woman of many faces
and the one that suits you best I fear
is the one you wear when I’m not here,
for when you wear your marriage face
boredom lounges round the place

Your finger sadly has a familiar ring about it.

Last night was your night out
and just before you went
you put your scowls in a tumbler
half filled with Sterodent
so they’d keep nice and fresh for me.

Monica,
the tea things are taking over,
the cups are as big as bubble cars
they throttle round the room,
the tin-openers skate on the greasy plates
by the light of the silvery moon.
The biscuits are having a party
they’re necking in our bread bin,
that’s jazz you hear in the salt cellars
but they don’t let non-members in.
The egg spoons had our eggs for breakfast,
the sauce bottle’s asleep in our bed,
I overheard the knives and forks
it won’t be long, they said
it won’t be long, they said,
and it wasn’t.

It all started yesterday evening
as I was helping the potatoes off with their jackets
I heard you making a date with the kettle,
I distinctly heard you making a date with the kettle,
my kettle.
Then at midnight,
In the half light,
When I was polishing the blue speckles in a famous soap powder,
I saw you fondling the frying-pan,
I distinctly saw you fondling the frying-pan,
My frying-pan.
Finally at mid-dawn,
In the half light
While waiting in the cool shadows beneath the sink,
I saw you making love with the gas cooker,
I distinctly saw you making love with the gas cooker,
My gas cooker.
My mistake was to leap upon you crying,
Monica, spare the saucers.
For now I’m alone,
you having left me for someone with a bigger kitchen.

In, October, when winter the lodger the sod,
came a-knocking at our door,
I set in a store of biscuits and whisky
you filled the hot-water bottle with tears
and we went to bed until spring.
In April we arose,
warm and smelling of morning,
we kissed the sleep from each others eyes,
and went out into the world,
and now summers here again regular as the rent man,
but our lives are now more ordered, more arranged.
The kissing, wily, carefree times are changed.
We no longer stroll along the beaches of the bed,
or snuggle in the long grass of the carpets,
the room no longer a world for make believing in
but a ceiling and four walls that are for living in.
We no longer eat our dinner holding hands
or neck in the back stalls of the television
the room no longer a place for hide and seeking in
but a container that we use for eat and sleeping in.
Our love has become as comfortable
as the jeans you lounge about in
as my old green coat
as necessary as the change you get from the milkman
for a ten bob note.
Our love has become as nice as a cup of tea in bed,
as simple as something the baby said.
Monica, the sky is blue, the leaves are green,
The birds are singing, the bells are ringing,
For me and my gal.
The suns as big as an ice cream factory,
the corns as high as an elephants eye
could go on for hours about the lovely weather
we are having,
but Monica,
they don’t make summers like they used to.
– Roger McGough

** Do continue to watch and vote for CLAUDIA TOMAZ‘s film, Kaidie and The Meaning of Life 3.0, Episode 1. Episode 2 coming up. **

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AS I TURN 6-MONTHS OLD, I REALISE THAT I QUITE ENJOY MY LIFE/LIVES NOW, HERE.

Unbeknownst to me at that time, my visit to Enjoy Cafe is to turn out to be profoundly life-changing. As I turn 6-months old on 12 June 2010, I wash down a dozen of the Aphrodisiac Sausages with Dettol. I am hit – not suddenly, but gradually, nicely, warmly, largo – with a realisation that I quite enjoy my life and lives now, here, in Nondon, in my Life 3.0. I think, and I know, that I enjoy where/when I am, difficult/diverting/frustrating/frivolous as it is. Society celebrates youth, in all its actual and mythological glory/beauty/recklessness/kawaii-ness/innocence (or so-called). I enjoyed being young when I was, but I also enjoy having travelled the journey (detours included) to get here, of being what(ever it is that) I am now, quite tremendously, in all its imperfections/wisdom (or lack thereof)/scars/histories/wear&tear/warts&all. And I enjoy knowing that I am enjoying it.

In all my lives, in Nondon and elsewheres, people have often judged me to be younger than I am. But never once had/have I a desire to deny/lie (although some times I evade, because I some times like to see where it leads me when I am perceived to be more naive than I am, which is not to say that I am with out mature folly). The look of shock (or disgust) by the asker invariably provides me with a (perverse) pleasure. (Allow me to share a couple of incidents with you, my Dear Readers. Incident #1: Last week at Cally Pool: Girl asks me when I step into pool, ‘How old are you?’ Me: ‘Make a guess?’ She: ’19’. I tell her. She looks offended. Keen to restore peace, I ask her: ‘How old are you?’ ’11’, she replies. She is quite a bit taller than me. She looks me up and down. Then, both unclear of how to carry on with the conversation, we swim off in separate directions, in shock. Incident #2: At my local Tesco’s, when asked for my ID, I tell cashier my age. She stares at me, and gets her Supervisor. The women begin staring at me. ‘Perhaps it is what I’m wearing?’, I offer. ‘No, it’s your skin’, supervisor says. ‘Well luckily you are not looking close enough’. So she comes close, barely inches away from me, eyes wide open, examining me. Keen to get my bottle, I endure this unexpected scrutiny for several seconds. ‘What do you eat to look like this?’, she asks, as the cashier beeps my bottle and Tesco’s-branded cheap and nasty cakes. ‘Tesco’s cheap and nasty cakes,’ I reply. Incident #3: He, 18, guessed that I was 22. I said, ‘We could have met when I first came to Nondon, but we might not have recognised each other as you must have been in a pram (and dozy from all that milky binge-drinking).’ I think this is a hilarious image, but he clearly did not.)*

Mind you, I am by no means old, old, but having lived 6 out of my prescribed 32.8-months allowance declares that I am no spring chicken, but a mature summer barbecued pork, sweating in lard. Dripped from the previous years’ roasts.

This image has as its source several text-tree diagrammes generated by Dr. Jamie O'Brien from a programme he designed.

More than ever before, I now enjoy many things physically, intellectually and psychologically. My Life 3.0 reality is an augmented one, but with neither sillycone nor sentimentalism. The best part is that I enjoy knowing how much I am able to enjoy what I am enjoying.  (A sign of smugness perhaps, or an other indication of a profound delusion. Not unike Quixote’s). And this is not a tautological statement (even though we enjoy tautologies and tautologies enjoy us). Though I have always been an introspective person, this seems an other stage of self-awareness and confidence that would have escaped me at an other age. More than ever before, I now know what I want, when I want it, and how to dispense/use/it, at the dosage that works – what specific phrase of a piece of music I wish to listen to, at what volume, for how many number of loops; what particular type of cheese I wish to savour at a particular moment, to be followed by what particular dessert at what dosage; what particular scene of a film I wish to replay in my head, to evoke or force about a particular emotion (and it is invariably a Herzog or Marker or Tarkovsky scene), at what point to wean myself off an obsession, to say ‘Enough!’ and move on; to know the exact demands of a task/race at hand, and pace myself, so that I do not burn out too quickly, so that I stay focused and clear, but allow myself refuelling and treats when the energy levels dip, and then go for a final push, a sprint, a dash, a be-all-end-all exertion, et al. I also enjoy not knowing, and enjoy knowing that I do not know, and enjoy that anticipation, anxiety, excitement, the waiting (Have you read Barthes’ elegant chapter ‘Waiting’, in A Lover’s Discourse?), the feeling silly, and curiosity. I enjoy doing what I am doing. I enjoy what I am being. I enjoy waking up every morning, excited about confronting my challenges. I enjoy a good challenge, as I always have had all my lives, as they give me a good kick, because I enjoy kicking back, hard. I enjoy wanting something and working hard for it. I enjoy achieving. I enjoy leaving. I enjoy arriving. Most of all I enjoy the process of getting there, even if the arrival is anticlimactic. In fact the arrival will invariably be. I enjoy putting in effort. I would have enjoyed not having to put in any effort, of course, but by now I know how I work, how I have to work, so I do, and I enjoy doing that. I enjoy going to bed at night, having fought the demons, windmills, and myselves and looking forward to the next set of challenges the next day. And the next. I enjoy raising the bar (including raising the Snicker bars into my mouth). I enjoy communicating with my friends in Life 2.0. I enjoy knowing you. I enjoy not knowing you. I enjoy that we may never, and/or may never desire to/need to, meet in Life 1.0. I enjoy that we might have met in Life 1.0, but do not out ourselves, because doing so would spoil everything, your idea of Kaidie, and hers, of you. I enjoy that we meet in Life 2.0. I enjoy that we meet at all. I enjoy that we meet, and share, and run together. I enjoy not knowing the fate/s of Kaidie (except that she must expire 09.09.2012). I enjoy that you play a part in Kaidie’s being. I enjoy being invited to unexpected diversions, as invented by my friends, including you, my Dear Readers, my Collaborators, my Co-creators. I enjoy being Kaidie. I enjoy that Kaidie  and Life 3.0 are public properties, and open source systems, and our collective and  subjective imagination. I enjoy trying and testing new things. I enjoy going where I hadn’t/ wouldn’t have. I enjoy running with you. I enjoy having virtual running companions on my 1000-day journey. I enjoy exploring new territories and unknown terrain. I enjoy not knowing. I enjoy being surprised. I enjoy that things are not written. I enjoy that Kaidie can be over written by you. I enjoy that Kaidie can be written off by you, and me, or in spite of me. I enjoy that Kaidie’s story in Life 3.0 cannot be facilitated with out your Web 2.0 assistance and good-old-fashioned imagination. I enjoy that Kaidie is not precious, that she will cease to exist, that she is me, but can be any one, any body, real or imagined, that she is fictive, but that she is me as well, that I am her, that you can be her too. I enjoy the smell of my cocoa-butter moisturiser because it smells like superrich vanilla icecream and I want to eat it but I don’t. I enjoy lying on the grass with B, G, S when the sun is shining. I enjoy walking home from Great Marlborough Street with C, and sighting a deflated football on the street and attempting to kick it, only to laugh at it, as if to mock it, but affectionately and not maliciously. I enjoy walking home with J & A from Smithfields when it is more than 20 degrees. I enjoy walking home with B from St Johns Street. I enjoy tension. I enjoy prolonging tension. I enjoy saying hello to the Hispanic cleaners. I enjoyed walking with B again, looking for food, starving, then stuffing my face with a sandwich that had hummous,  and something else, and asking B if there is anything on my face, but  unfortunately left with no more time to talk more. I enjoy taking time. I enjoy the luxury of time. I enjoy having a short attention span. I enjoy having the physical and mental stamina to endure long journeys/races/lives. I enjoy the sting of wasabi. I enjoy walking at 18 degrees. I enjoy running at 8-12 degrees. I enjoy running in the gym at 16 degrees, because that is the lowest you can go, but the air is still stale and stuffy. I enjoy my shower at 40 degrees. I enjoy swimming in chlorine at 25 degrees. I enjoy my foamy coffee piping hot. I enjoy walking along Commercial Road with G. I enjoyed walking with S along the canal late at night, when I slipped, because I was not wearing my glasses, and where I would not have walked alone at that hour, but together it was lovely, based on a decade of friendship. I enjoyed wandering around Moscow with I as it snowed  and we got lost in the circle line. I enjoyed exploring Perth with J, 2 foreigners and strangers looking for a place to go, with out a map, enjoying being lost, together. I enjoyed walking in Suomenlinna with P in a Summer midnight, when it was still bright, albeit chilly. I enjoyed being submerged in the outdoor onsen, in the mountains, when it was cold and raining, holding an umbrella, pitch black, seeing no thing, but comforted by my friends’ laughter, friends who had brought me here because I was flying off the next day. I enjoyed walking with F in Spore in my previous life, and Paris in my current, even though we have both moved on. I enjoy all my long distance flights. I enjoy not sleeping on my long distance flights. I enjoy flying across timezones, political excuses and economic selfishness.  I enjoyed my 7-hour bus ride with A, with out sleep, and the subsequent croissants for breakfast, during which exactly two thousand bits of pastry were busily flaking onto the dirty trashy subway station ground, so instead of eating all 2 croissants A had only 1.2, or thereabouts, I gathered. I enjoy running, flying, swimming and living alone. I still enjoy swimming because the chlorine endorphins kick in surely and quickly. I enjoyed running in Tokyo, Fukuoka, Beppu, Oxford, Spore and Winterthur. I enjoy getting jealous of Kaidie when B tells me that he might prefer to go out with the Life 2.0, virtual Kaidie than the Life 1.0 me. I enjoy the airconditioning in the British Library and Wellcome Institute. I enjoy sweating when working out. I enjoy being underestimated. I enjoy proving myself. I enjoy proving myself wrong. I enjoy learning. I enjoy perfect pitch and hearing. I enjoy being a little short-sighted, so I see things in a slight blur when too far away. I enjoy fuzzy logic. I enjoy ambiguity. I enjoy dry humour. I enjoyed  playing the piano for 11 years. I enjoy imagining an other life as a concert pianist. I enjoy walking in Regents Fark with A, not knowing where we were going, if any where, but even if no where, that was fine, as it was, as it is. I enjoyed the warmth of my filmmaker-activist friends in Sderot who were passionate about peace. I enjoyed their sincerity and kindness after I endured endless searches  in order to get onto el al opening my bags emptying my hand luggage removing my battery from my laptop showing them my files body searched many times  passports flipped endless questions asked. I enjoy imagining Y running in Hyde Park, although not with me. I enjoy the smell of fresh bread. I enjoy eating at least 1 banana daily. I enjoy salmon and brie. I enjoy champagne with pancakes. I enjoy olives and corn and niceness. I enjoy the smell of B’s hair. I enjoy smells. I enjoy smelling. I enjoy the smell of my coconut shampoo. I enjoyed last Thursday aplenty. I enjoyed Tuesday very much too. I enjoy enjoying the moments of enjoyment when they happen. I enjoy not trying to repeat such moments because of my insatiability. I enjoy training myself to not be nostalgic. I enjoy training myself not to be attached. I enjoy separating mind from matter. I enjoyed saying hello to the many little people at the museum, because they remind me of R, E, K, B, K, S, even though I have not met S and she, and K, and E would not recognise/remember me, that I have to start afresh with them when I next meet them, and I do not know when I will next meet them. I enjoy holding a baby or a toddler. I enjoy not being labelled as selfish for my choices, because I think the choice of reproduction is as selfish. I enjoy i-chatting with R, who knows all its functions by the age of 6. I enjoy silence when I am working. I enjoy working in silence, because I have memorised and mis-memorised how Gould does it and it swims in my head, never mind if it is a distortion of distortions of Beethoven and Bach. I enjoy the ability to be silent when with an other, because it says that we do not need to rubbish talk, even though I enjoy talking rubbish to amuse you, and me, but I enjoy being silent when we are together, because it is in silence that we are in an other space and time that we enclose for us, as and when I desire an enclosure/definition. I enjoy sleeping. I enjoy sleeping for 12 hours for a recharge. I enjoyed watching G’s eyeballs widen because I say rubbish. I always enjoy walking along Farrington Road because it is wide and gently sloped and when I walk there I am in a good mood or walking there puts me in a good mood. I enjoy walking at 6.5kmh when it is sunny. I enjoy wanting. I enjoy running the next morning. I enjoy being cooked for. I enjoy sitting at the back of a motorised bike. I think I will enjoy skydiving, bungee jumping, and deepsea diving. And freefalling. I enjoy doing things with no strings attached. I enjoy sleeping at 2200 and walking up at 0500.  I enjoy running at 0700. I enjoy a disciplined life. I enjoy letting go. I enjoy being focused. I enjoy being distracted. I enjoy having a sense of control. I enjoy having my routines interrupted. I enjoy drawing lists of things to do. I enjoy drawing lists to  remind me to look at my other lists. I enjoy being disrupted. I enjoy pushing myself physically and mentally as a dare to myself. I enjoy surprises. I enjoy being surprised. I enjoy smiling to fellow runners now, when I shied away from it before, but now I do it some times because it is nice when you do laps and encounter the same characters repeatedly, so you smile, and move on. I enjoy smiling and waving back when I run along Euston Road and school girls from the bus smile and wave at me this morning. I enjoyed the 7-second run the man wearing ‘Save The Children’ bright blue t-shirt did with me as I run past Kings Cross yesterday morning. I enjoy running because it calms me down and rids my anxieties, but when A asks, why are you anxious in the first place, I can not answer. I enjoy hearing my heavy breathing as I run, because it reminds me that I am breathing. I enjoy sweating as I run. I enjoy looking forward to food, drinks and not running, when I am running. I enjoy swinging my arms and propelling myself forward as I run. I enjoy running with the minimal things, without water, without ID, with no money, no baggage, no burden, just run. I enjoy running in a city, in any city, because I am no longer seen as an other,  no longer small and exotic,  but having some temporary ownership of the place I am running, and personalising the space I inhabit, and I gaze the city in a different manner, and I am gazed upon in a different manner, I am even taken to be a local and am asked for directions. I enjoy doing a little bouncy gait this morning, with out pain, with out aches, with some speed. I enjoy watching the blister grow on my toe. I enjoy the texture of chaffed skin from rubbing my arm against my running shirt. I enjoy my running clothes scratching my back, creating marks on my back that do not leave, where as I would have been disturbed by any mark or blemish or spot before, but now I accept some, because it comes with this activity. I enjoy taking time to warm up. I enjoy taking time to stretch. I enjoy fartleks when I feel stronger. I enjoy pounding on the treadmill when I am fully focused, because I have to be careful not to drift, because when I did I fell off. I enjoy hitting 14kmh on the treadmill. I enjoy counting when on the treadmill.  I enjoy not counting because I count everything in my life. I enjoy taking calculated risks. I enjoy slow, long-drawn runs when I work at distances. I enjoy running alone in real life. I enjoy testing my limits. I enjoy knowing my limits. I enjoy pushing my limits. I enjoy working with my limits and limitations. I enjoy the prospect of a big bowl of boiled cauliflower/parsnips/broccoli/cougettes after my run. I enjoy that my cheap pink nail polish comes off nearly as soon as I put them on. I always enjoy my 2nd round in the Fark because that is when I am no longer anxious, but simply running, when my head is full of thoughts, and at the same time not thinking of any thing in particular, when my body is most relaxed, and when my GPS will register my faster times, not because I am racing, but because it feels good, and I know now how to make myself feel good by calling upon my running endorphins. I enjoyed a very nice run on Wednesday morning, after a nice Tuesday where no thing and every thing and some thing else happened,  when I moved on the next morning, still tired and still light, but running, unthinkingly, and registered my most enjoyable and fastest 2nd round ever in a non-race condition, 10.2kmh, as opposed to my usual 9.4kmh, not terribly much better in real terms, but mentally, in unreal terms, trust me, it felt good, very good, feeling completely free from any pain, any bother, just relaxed, just 1 foot after the other, not minding the branches poking me, not minding other runners zapping past me, but bouncing on/off my shoes, not as if my shoes are super bouncy,  for, mind you, it was my old Brooks, 1 out of my 3 pairs of running shoes, but this with the sole /soul soon coming off, but still I felt a bounce, a new gait that I never had before Wednesday, and best of all, I was able to control that and bring it on when I felt ready, and I knew that I felt ready, so I ran,  almost bouncing sideways, arms swaying me forward, not minding how funny or ugly or clumsy I  must have appeared, but enjoying the lightness of being, momentarily, in perfect control, and complete-total-freaking-fully let go at the same time. I enjoy discipline. I enjoy being a disciplinarian. I enjoy the dictum of no pain no gain. I enjoy Nondon and cannot imagine doing this, whatever it is that I am doing, any where else. I enjoy long distance calls on Skype. I enjoy running across different dimensions. I enjoy being confused about which dimension I am in, and applying different sets of values, sometimes inappropriately. I enjoy forgetting if I should have been more assertive, or am not humble/polite/modest enough, or am too much of a go-getter. I enjoy forgetting if I am not serious enough, if I am too austere, or if I am too childish. I enjoy having a large repertoire of values to pick and mix, and learning new things in each new dimension that I travel to. I enjoy my life and lives now and do not stop me from enjoying myself. I enjoy this intensity, this being filled, this being fulfilled, being empty, a half full/half empty question, being anxious, being lucid, being heightened, having no excessive things in my life, being frivolous and enjoying silly indulgences. I enjoy being reconciled. I also enjoy not being reconciled, being confused, being consistently inconsistent, being torn between violent opposing thoughts, still struggling with the theory vs. practice problem, being exhausted and wrecked by Kaidie, being Kaidie, not being Kaidie, being besides myself, being shipwrecked, being afloat, not moving my arms or legs until the next swimmer comes along and hits me off the lane, tumbling, falling down, stepping on horse poo, huffing and puffing and neighing as I run, running out of breath, holding my breath underwater, being at one and at the same time many, having many conflicting values, and having many contradictory views, having absolutely no values. I will enjoy my Summer. I enjoy staying focused. I will enjoy the next 26.8 months of my life.

* 13 July 2010: After this post was published, I read of a nice story that captures perfectly the essence of the word serendipity– of a couple who lived in seperate continents, but who were photographed 30 years earlier, in the same picture, but one of them in a pram, in the background, and a complete stranger, of course. They met 15 years ago, and only made the discovery 8 years ago just before their wedding. This sounds like a classic Kaidie scenario (of some hits and plenty of misses that we have with one another, as we traverse across lifetimes) albeit one that has a happy ending (in so far as a unification is read as a positive thing, and if endings are desirable).

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DAY 80: KAIDIE FALLS (her 3rd in the last 80 days) HEAD OVER HEELS RUNNING ALONG THE PAVEMENT OF FUSTON ROAD. SHE IS TRANSFORMED.

Kaidie's Life 3.0: topple

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ANALYSIS OF MY 155.0km PATHETIC RUN-WALK IN COMPENSATION FOR MY 1550km NONDON-ZURICH-NONDON FLIGHT. (But don’t you dare scoff – better SOME effort than NO THING [?])!

155km_CH

I am presenting you, my Dear Readers, THE official one and only scientific philosophical analysis of my Nondon-Zurich trip last month. I had promised to run/walk/crawl/jump/swim 155.0km as a pathetic gesture to pay for my 1550km Nondon – Zurich – Nondon flight.

So finally I have recovered from my jetlag (there is a 1 hour time difference between London and Switzerland, for those of you who did not know). After a few nights of 12 hours of sleep, (thus is the luxury of Life 3.0) I was recharged and sat down to tabulate my results.

The chart in the centre is my own documentation of my journeys. I began working towards fulfilling my goal from 22 January, and 15 days later, I completed the given task. A few points to note:

– All distances are estimations (based on previous timings, ‘measurements’ [using my fine fingers’ widths] of distances based on paper maps).

– As distance (and endurance) is the aim, timing is not taken into consideration. (In any case, my pace is alwaaaaayyyyys sloooowwwwwwwwwwwwww – but some are slower than sloooowwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww.)

– For any given session, distances must be more than 5km to be taken into account. Anything less will be ignored (and laughed at).

What surrounds this chart are maps generated by Mini, my Garmin foretrex 201 GPS, which I borrowed from CASA and Urbantick (whom I suspect owns a large stash of  other Minis, Mediums and Majors, given his quite interesting experiments in the field.) Detailed versions of these maps can be found on my page on GPSies. The thicker lines in blue are my tracks as documented by Mini. (Information geeks who find pleasure from creating/looking at different patterns from words and numbers will derive some joy from sites like these. However, I like to believe that I maintain a critical distance [pun intended]).

Not harbouring any gadget-fetishism whatsoever (oh puh-leaazzee, dah-ling, I am an au-naturale artificial being! Tsk tsk.), one of the points that intrigues me at this point is the difference between my representation and Mini’s, ie, one that is (supposedly) subjective (based on memory and temperaments of fingers), arbitrary (based on [highly-educated, ahem] estimations) and analogue, vs one that is (supposedly) scientific, accurate, objective and digital.

This difference/gap/slippage is the space-time where/when Kaidie exists/lives.

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DAY 72: THE KAPUTT HAPPINESS PLUGIN 3.0.

The first image he told me about was of three children on a road in Iceland, in 1965. He said that for him it was the image of happiness and also that he had tried several times to link it to other images, but it never worked. He wrote me: one day I’ll have to put it all alone at the beginning of a film with a long piece of black leader; if they don’t see happiness in the picture, at least they’ll see the black.

– Chris Marker, Sans Soleil, 1982 Argos Film.

Are you happy? Have you ever been happy? Are you happy now? Will you stay happy? How do you know? Do you know if you are happy? Do you think you are happy? How are you certain? How certain are you? How do you measure it? What is the duration of your happiness? Is it intermittent? Does it flicker? How long does it stay? Was it invited? Was it nice? Was it difficult to upload it? Were there any errors? Did your laptop crash? Which version of the plugin have you got? What are the reviews? Has it been updated? When was it created? Is it still relevant? Is it obsolete? Is it of importance? Does it work? Is it working? Is one enough? How many do you have per day? Is it permanently switched on? Does it come on at will? Is there waiting time? Is there downtime? What is the cost? What is the price you pay? Is it open source? How long does it last? Does it last? What is a good duration for you? Do you prefer a short intense kick-in or a slow-burning diluted long-drawn one? Are you a sprinter or an endurance runner? Or do you like fartleks? Will the plugin survive? Will you survive? What is its size? Is it light? Is it easy to attach? Are you attached to it? Are you able to detach yourself from it? Are you sure? Are you in control? Is is large? Is it a comfortable fit? Is it measurable? What are the units? How many bytes? How many kilobytes? How many gigabytes? How many terabytes? Does it fit in your hardware?  Do you need an external drive for this? Have you remembered to back it up in 3 different locations lest you lose it? Is it weightless? Is it a burden? Is is immeasurable? Is it small? Is it portable? Is it laughably tiny? Is it obscure? Do you even know if it’s there? Does it even know if it was you it was looking for? What if it wasn’t? So what? What if it was? How often do you put it on? Is it automatic? Is it an automatic upgrade? Are you sure it is safe to download it? What makes you happy? How does it smell? What is its colour? Is it mixed with black? Is it black? What shade of black? How does it taste? Does it have an aftertaste? How does it feel? Rough? Nice? Same? New? Different? Does the same-ness comfort you? Does the familiarity make you happy? Does the new-ness excite you? Does the difference enhance your happiness? After it is used does it still make you happy? Do you discard it? What is the source of happiness? Does it matter? Where is it located? Is it in Nondon? Where in Nondon? How do I get there? What time should I get there? How many km does it take? How long does it take for me to walk there? How long does it take for me to swim there? Can I reach there in the next 928 days? Can I get specific directions from google map? Can my Mini, my GPS foretrex trackking system, map it down nicely? Can Mini see it? Can Mini feel it? Are the satellite signals obscured? Are there satellite signals when it kicks in? Is the plugin in conflict with other plugins? Must I deactivate others to get this running? What is the name of your happiness plugin? Is it Mini? Is it Major? Is it Many? Is it Few? Is it One? Is it Only? Is it Some? Is it the one and only? Do you believe in permanence? Do you believe in non-permanence? How do you hold on to permanence? How do you hold on to impermanence? What is left after the filtration process? What do you leave behind in the throwaway culture? What do you throwaway? What do you re-use? Why is the rusty bit on your pencil case or purse acceptable? Why is that speck of doubt on your beard unacceptable? Why do you smile? Do you smile because you are happy? Do you smile because you are not happy? Do you smile only when you are happy? Do you smile only when you are not happy? Do you have different grades of smiles? Do you laugh? Do you bend over backwards with laughter in happiness? Do you snigger? Don’t you snigger? Do you want snickers at sainsburys which cost 5 for a pound? Do you scoff at other people’s happiness? Do you show teeth when you smile when you are happy? Do you cover your mouth when you laugh when you are happy? When you smile when you are not happy, is it the same smile? When you laugh when you are not happy, is it the same laughter? Do you laugh when you are happy and nervous? Do you laugh when your happiness plugin works? Do you laugh when you happiness plugin is kaputt? Do you smile when you happiness plugin kicks in? Do you smile when you happiness plugin fails? Do you grin? How do you grin? Do you smile to yourself? Why? What are you thinking of when you smile to yourself? What triggers off that smile? Do you rate it? Do you rate your level of happiness? How would you rate your level of happiness now? How would you rate your level of happiness in general? Are you happy with your score? Do you want to improve? How happy do you want to be? Would you know when you get there? Do you know the concept of enough? Do you have low expectations? Do you have low expectations because you adjust your expectations? Do you learn from your experiences? Do you list your happiness? Do you have a list of happiness? Do you, like Sei Shonagon, have a list of things that quicken the heart? Does you heart quicken when you are happy? Does you heart slow down when you are happy? Do you have a heart? Do you have a strong heart? Do you have a weak heart? Does your heart quicken when you are not happy? Is the pursuit of happiness important? Do you pursue happiness? How do you pursue happiness? Does happiness court you? How do you flirt? Does happiness take the lead? Do you step back? Do you lunge forward? How hard do you want it? Do you let go? Who is aggressive? Who plays passive? What is the courtship process like? Who wins? Who plays hard to get? Who is the obscure object of desire? How do you let go? How do you score? How do you get it? How do you know that you get it? Do you actively pursue it? Is there effort? Is the effort worth it? Is the result worth the effort? How do you measure your success? Do you do well? Do you do well easily? Do you do well by practice? Is it difficult to get there? How do I get there? How do I get there there? Why did it go kaputt? When did it go kaputt? When will it go kaputt? When does it die? When does it expire? Can I repair it? Can I resuscitate it? Can I get a new one? What do I do with the kaputt one? Where can I recycle it? What is its material? Does it burn? Is it combustable? Is it volatile? Is it infectious? Where can I dispose of it safely? Why do you want to be happy? Is it important to be happy? Why is it important to be happy? Why should one be happy? Do you make happiness plugins? How much does it cost? Do you take credit cards? Is there an extra charge? Do you take debit cards? But my debit card is kaputt because some one used it to buy his happiness in my name. Do you accept cash? What currency? Can I round up the figures? Can I have a discount please? I want to buy several as backups. Can I buy in bulk? Is there a special discount for bulk purchasing? Will it arrive overnight? What time? Must I stay at home to wait for delivery? When is it shipped? Is it insured? Is it bubble-wrapped? Can I poke the bubbles of the bubble wrap? Are they large or normal bubbles? I like the large bubbles as they make a nicer sound when I jump on them. Can you wrap them in 2 layers please? Just in case the first layer gets burst?  How many plugins must I use for it to kick in? Do you fight happiness? Do you fight non-happiness? How do you fight non-happiness? Do you have enough storage space for happiness? Do you have any storage place for happiness? What is the wait for the next one? What is the average wait for it? Where is the button to press? How do I know if the wait is over? How long does it take for me to doggypaddle from here to the other side? How long does it take for me to run there? How long will I run before I get run over by a Nondon driver? How long will I run before I get run down? What is the signal opposite? What is an opposite signal? Opposite to what? What is opposite to happiness? Where is the signal opposite? When is the signal opposite? Are the signals in conflict? How can I help? Where do I stand? Are they talking to each other? Are they in cahoots against me? Who can come on my side to fight them? What do I need to fight them? How can I win this battle? How can I cross with care? Shall I cross? How much longer must I wait?

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DONATE ONLINE NOW!! SUPPORT KAIDIE’S 10km RUN FOR MEDECINS SANS FRONTIERES 14 MARCH SUNDAY 0900hrs REGENTS FARK.

Kaidie is grateful to Joel Cunningham of UCL Friends of MSF for helping to create this post.

On the 14th of March Sunday, 0900hrs, Kaidie will run a 10km race in Nondon’s Regent’s Fark to raise money for Médecins Sans Frontières. DO show your support by DONATING TO KAIDIE’S RUN! This is a pain-free process. CLICK HERE TO DONATE NOW! Simply write at the message box ‘KAIDIE NONDON’. If you are UK tax payer, this site makes it easy for MSF to claim back an extra 28% from your donation. ANY amount is fine! NO amount is too small! (And of course, NO amount if too big!) A small effort/token is better than none!

Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is an international humanitarian medical aid charity which is currently working in around 60 countries around the globe. Some of their recent efforts have been directed towards the devastating earthquake in Haiti, the ongoing unrest in Sudan and the so-called ‘neglected diseases’ such as Chagas. This year there will be at least 200 people from in and around London running.

Like Kaidie, please visit the following sites to learn more about MSF’s work, as well as the 2010 run: * The efforts of MSF * MSF on Youtube * MSF UK on Twitter * Friends of MSF Charity Run 2010 Facebook Event * Friends of MSF Charity Run 2010 blog * UCL Friends of MSF’s Photostream

Left: Astride Louissaint, 25 years old. Middle: Psychologist Marie Lafortune assesses patients in Martissant for psychological needs. Right: Haitian nurses comforting each other in Martissant. Photographs by Julie Remy/MSF.

My Dear Readers, DO support MSF’s work by contributing your hardearned £, $, cents, pennies, euros, francs, marks, schillings, dinars, leva, pesos, rupiahs, kroner, rupees, shekels, yen, guilders, zlotychs, won, lira, for Kadie’s run! We all know how many excuses we (you and I) can come up with, so this process has been made painless, JUST FOR YOU. Donate online NOW! Click on this long link NOW!! If you understand the logic of cause-effect/karma, you should do what you’ve got to do, NOW. If you don’t understand that ‘for every action there is a reaction’, well, just wait and see. And wait. And see. See?

From today, I will also be updating my Dear Readers here, Twitter and Facebook about the amount I have raised, and also publish your name. After the run, I will compile the list of donors, and also share pictures with you. As usual, we can also have live chats via Facebook or this website (scroll down), for any inquiries you may have with regards to this campaign-within-a-campaign (of looking for a meaning of Life 3.0).

If you’d like to come and support me on the day – the run will be starting from ‘The Hub’ in the middle of Regents Park in London at about 9am. Worried that you cannot recognise me? Simply look out for the last person to come in, or one that is crawling, or the last person to leave the Fark when it closes at night. As I have stated that I wish to run a marathon by 2011 for a charitable cause, this is a good, small beginning. Again this is but a miniscule, pathetic effort from Kaidie, but better a small gesture than none (?), so do support! See you soon!

These images are from charity runs from previous years. Photos by UCL Friends of MSF’s Photostream.

Médecins Sans Frontières

Médecins Sans Frontières is an independent international medical humanitarian organization that delivers emergency aid in around 60 countries to people affected by armed conflict; epidemics; natural or man-made disasters; or exclusion from health care.

In emergencies and their aftermath, MSF rehabilitates and runs hospitals and clinics, performs surgery, battles epidemics, carries out vaccination campaigns, operates feeding centres for malnourished children and offers mental health care. When needed, MSF also constructs wells, dispenses clean drinking water, and provides shelter materials like blankets and plastic sheeting.

Through longer-term programmes, MSF treats patients with infectious diseases such as tuberculosis, sleeping sickness, and HIV/AIDS and provides medical and psychological care to marginalized groups such as street children.

MSF was born in the early 1970s out of the exasperation of a group of French doctors who worked in desperate conditions in the Biafra War (1967-1970). They were determined to create a movement to deliver independent humanitarian aid wherever it was needed, and one that would speak out about the plight of the victims it helped. In order to fulfil these goals, MSF was created in complete independence of any political, religious or economic powers. The organisation remains fiercely protective of these core values today.

In recognition of its humanitarian actions in such areas as Afghanistan, Ethiopia and Rwanda, the MSF movement was awarded the 1999 Nobel Peace Prize.

The UK office was established in London in 1993. It supports MSF’s field work by recruiting volunteers, collecting donations and raising awareness of humanitarian crises through the media. A specialist medical team works directly with the field projects to help solve urgent clinical problems.

The Friends of Médecins sans Frontières

Friends of MSF are student societies based in universities all around the UK and Ireland. They are the official student support organisation for MSF across both nations, and are run on a voluntary basis.


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