On Hypocrisy

Ok, I know all you family members are looking for the cute pics and video of Abi on Christmas. We’re still editing the video (read: lazy) so I hope to get a Christmas update up tomorrow.
Back to this post. I went for a run today at a nearby open space park, one well known for tough mountain biking. However, since we had a whole lot of snow and then it mostly melted, I really didn’t think biking was appropriate. See, I like to think of myself as a responsible trail user. I don’t ride when the trails are slushy, I yield to hikers and horses (read: stop or politely ask to pass), I carry a first aid kit, I aim to pick up and pack out after my dog, and I keep her on a leash 75% of the time. Yeah, that all sounds good and righteous, right? So, when I saw 8 different mountain bikers out on Belcher Hill today (one of which actually ran me and Maddy off the trail), I was MAD. People that ride when the trails are slushy and muddy ruin it for the rest of us. It’s just not responsible. Running and hiking on slushy area is far less impact on the trail and surrounding areas – the human foot disperses weight very efficiently and does not typically cause serious rutting in areas designed for foot travel. Bikes, however, can really damage a trail when it is in a vulnerable state.
So, towards the end of my run it was getting pretty slushy and I let Maddy off leash, she was wearing her pack so I figured she wouldn’t go too far. All was well until a herd of elk started going up the gully. Maddy takes off after them and is gone in an instant. Oops. I start back up the trail and run into another pack of trail runners and dogs, who said they just saw her drop into the gully and disappear. Great. I start walking and thinking calmly. I’ll give the search 10 minutes, and then start running back (it was getting dark). I also realized that in Maddy’s pack were my car keys, water, cell phone, and survival kit. So I would actually have to run all the way back to the house. Eek.
Not long after, I hear Maddy’s bell jingling (the bell to alert wildlife to her presence) and get her back. One side of her pack is unzipped, and my cell phone and survival kit are missing. Forever. I am happy to see her and we finish our muddy run before the sun sets. When I got in the care I realized something – my dog CHASED WILDLIFE. I left TRASH IN THE WOODS. Not to mention, that cell phone contains small amounts of toxic metals. All because I didn’t keep my dog on a leash.
I didn’t think these thoughts in a “”I’m beating myself up” kind of way, but it made me realize that my self-righteousness about some of the other trail users that day was very hypocritical. Maybe I could be more empathetic.
Oh, and if you try to call my phone anytime soon, don’t expect an answer. Anyone have a spare T-Mobile phone they want to sell me? How about a space blanket and iodide tablets?
Update: Thanks to my wonderful friends at playgroup, I have a phone already!

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4 responses to “On Hypocrisy

  1. In my opinion, you should not use the word “lazy” and “we have a two year old in the house” in the same sentence; or even in the same blog entry. That is just my opinion.

  2. Isn’t it funny the situations God puts you in to show you things? Happy New Year Johnson Family!!

  3. apples and oranges.

    there’s a difference between an honest goof (what you did) and being deliberately inconsiderate (what 95% of people seem to be these days). losing your cell phone and kit during puppy-related monkey business is a far cry from deliberately tearing up trails on your mountain bike.

    funny timing on this post, actually… i’ve been conceiving of my essay on the death of common courtesy in modern times, but it’s been hard to write because it usually devolves into a torrent of cursing and hateful vitriol that – while possibly deserved (as the main targets are smokers, bad drivers, oblivious parents of small children, etc) – don’t lend much to credibility. if i ever finish it in anything resembling acceptable language, i’ll float it your way.

  4. For me it is called “karma” and it likes to bite me in the butt too. You are soooo not alone my friend. Bonus, you have a conscience, unlike some of the freakshows out there that could care less. You are so awesome, don’t you forget it!! 😉

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