Strangers Passing on the Sidewalk

I am not a fan of jogging.  In fact, most of the time, I hate jogging.  When I put on my headphones with a downloaded book on my IPod and drag my dog along with me, it’s a tolerable means of working out, but I will never be a runner.  Years ago when I had designs on being in the Air Force, I made myself run every day, working on my time, my distance, etc.  When that fell through, I gave up the sport.  Cold turkey.  And never missed it.  So when I got it in my addled brain to run a couple of 5Ks this summer, it surprised everyone…even me.  I am back to jogging, now, a few times a week and you know what?  I still don’t like it.  But I have noticed something.  Joggers are their own little type of sub-community.  If I am out walking my dog along the sidewalk and I pass a jogger, that’s it: I just pass them.  If I am jogging as well, however, it’s a different story.  When we pass, there is an acknowledgement.  We smile at each other, wave or do that oh-so-cool quick chin-up reverse nod.  It’s kind of like: “Oh, I see you’ve got the headphones, and the jogging shoes, moisture-wicking material and sunglasses.  You’re a jogger, huh?  Yeah, me too.”  It’s a split-second interaction as we share a sidewalk or one of us moves to the street while we pass.  But in that split-second, there’s a connection.  Because despite everything we don’t know about each other, we know we have one thing in common. And maybe I don’t like jogging, but there’s something kind of satisfying about being in that eclectic group of strangers that passes on the sidewalk.


~ S.D. Bullard


~ by sdbullard on May 28, 2013.

2 Responses to “Strangers Passing on the Sidewalk”

  1. I’m a jogger and I actually prefer it to going to the gym. We have a mountain preserve across the street from our house, so it’s easy to go out and jog on the trails. I hate the sweat and the fry your brain heat of the desert, but I do feel great after a good run. 🙂

    • I don’t do gyms, either…I prefer to work out solo in my basement. But there is a definite feeling of accomplishment after a run.

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