Today we did a lunchtime walk. It’s 4-ish kilometre route. I took my daughter who, while used to walking that distance to and from school, generally does it in what I might can best be described as leisurely (and usually in leather school shoes). She doesn’t do sport or anything exercise-y. However, when I’m doing this walk, it’s for exercise – to get the heart rate going – not to look at the view. So once we headed out, she was definitely lagging behind me.
To get Ms15 walking beside me and not behind me, I called her to me and said come on, walk with my steps, match my steps. Let’s pretend we’re marching. Now that she was focused on ‘keeping time’, I was gently about to increase our pace without her really noticing it too much. When I needed to slow down, I could ease back, and she eased right along with me.
As we were walking along together, I wondered if this wasn’t a metaphor for society. Perhaps for the bulk of humans, we’re happy to keep in step. As a group we move gently into new directions (I’m thinking about language, race relations, and gender discrimination). If we move too fast, there’s chaos and backlash.I know it sounds corny – but what if the core component of human society is about critical mass or working as a group. There are always those who will keep their own time – they’re the artists, or the renegades. What if, as humans, the bulk of the us, the critical mass in the middle, remain within it. It would explain general apathy as well as atrocities.I should probably get my hands on some Orwell.
If I’m completely on the wrong track, here’s some lovely Brisbane purple to make up for it …