Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Commute This

It must be about THREE weeks since Eve tagged me with the Eights. Then Annette came 'round the other side and tagged me too.

So here's what I'm going to do.

Eight is a lovely number, but minus three is five. (I hope this is okay Eve, I've got to ease my life. [nice half rhyme, eh Mark?)

And I'll not speak of things of me, but rather things of Hsu. (For all inquiring souls out there, that name's pronounced like "she.")

Hsu says that we are "spaced out" (by this he means by distance). We drive to work, to church, to shop, and all things that befit us. Commutes have cost. I'll total five (see, Eve, I'm getting to it).

1. we gain more weight, and it's no surprise,
2. we favor independence.
3. To participate in community, we're less likely by the tens-es. (10 minutes behind the wheel; 10 percent less involvement.)
4. We're apt to laud "efficiency,"
5. though not in physical health, you see.
(Suburbanites have more, more, more... of lung disease and migraines, of belly aches, arthritis, and annoying bladder illness. [Mark! Half-rhyme alert on arthritis and illness! Full rhymes may appear based on regional accents.])

In all, my soul most honestly,
admitted to bane of efficiency.
For I rarely walk with family,
hand in hand through God's creation.
And it focuses me, most vigorously,
on "getting there" RIGHT NOW.

The conclusion is this. I must recalculate.
For being "spaced out" causes problems so great.
(And that is the end of my three less than eight.
Breathe deep and forgive, Mark, my poetry mate,
for the poetry blast, which to you gave a migraine,
or a belly-ache, as sure as molasses,
has come to conclusion, thank goodness,
at last-ess.)

[Phew, I'm relieved too. Rhymes have got to be almost as costly as commuting.]

Cars in Guatemala photo, by Dorothy O Miller. Used with permission.

Seedlings Invitation: If you write a post related to this post and Link It Back Here, let me know and I'll link to yours.


Al's Countering Commuter Culture

Charity's Car Talk

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Blogger spaghettipie said...

You make excellent points (as usual) and in such a poetic sort of way (I think).

As a former literal commuter to work (1.5 hours each way), I totally see those effects. As a member of a "spaced out" society, I feel them as well - the additional stress, the impatience, the bowing down to the "convenient"...

How do we minimize the commute, then?

3:01 PM  
Blogger Heather said...

That's some poetry.
I'm in the same bucket as spaghettipie (hee-hee, say that out loud): how do we live closer lives? I want to.

3:14 PM  
Blogger Mark Goodyear said...

How totally fun. "Poetry blast." I like that phrase. And no one has ever called me poetry mate before. I'm touched.

A word about slant rhyme or half rhyme or false rhyme. (Not to be confused with eye rhyme.) English poetry didn't rhyme until after the French-Norman invasion in 1066. Rhyme is a poetry technique inherited from Romance languages (like French) which have repeated ending patterns in their words because of common declinsions and conjugations.

English relies on word order rather than declinsions.

Prior to the Norman invasion that frenchified our poetry conventions, Anglo-Saxon poetry was built on alliteration. The beginnings of the words sounded the same, rather than the end.

That's why I like free verse and blank verse so much. They pick up the music of our language.

As to commuting... I ride my bike whenever possible. And when I drive it takes two minutes. The joy of living in a town with 20,000 people.

6:07 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Hmm...ok, it'll pass, LL. *grin*

If commuting is kinda lazy, how about emailing versus snail mail-or blogging vs calling on the telephone? Interesting, huh?

10:55 PM  
Blogger Ted M. Gossard said...

For me to enjoy poetry says something. Though as I age I see beauty and goodness more and more where I didn't before (that rhymes? is it catching?)

5:05 AM  
Blogger Greg said...

Thanks for the poetic points well taken. They resonate with the need to STOP and BE in the midst of frenetic pace that deceptively threatens to swallow us up into its commute.

8:47 AM  
Blogger Lloyd Irving Bradbury said...

Thankyo my life is torn and in a battle to fight the forces of darkness
your cheery us kindly recieved

6:05 AM
My wife got in an assident after working her nurse 24 hour shift then stoped later befor comming home she was on her way to honda dealer police stopped her and impounded car went to downtown to bail out car cost1,100 dol;ars then cab to pound cost117 do;;ars to the edge of city upon lookin at car it was vandalized in pound call insurace company they retrieved car it is brand new honda so they striped it of plastic lemses etc. i have just moved from chicago and in the middle of thatr without car. Wife does not want to drive anymore and i cant. nowith no money. and that is only part of the story

9:32 AM  
Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

Spaghetti... gosh, I hope no one takes this poetry seriously. It's bad, and I know it! One and a half hours! Wow. But you changed that?

Heather... thanks. I did it myself. :) As for living closer, Hsu recommends rethinking our connections in "parish communities." So it means making some tough decisions, I think.

Mark... who else writes poetry with me? And comes here to explain the obscure meaning of half rhyme? Too bad we can't ride bikes together... you, me, and our families.

Eve... you're a dear. Yes, blogging can have an effect on the baggage (physical, I think.) At least with the phone, we walk around! (That reminds me, it's time to stand up and blog... I'm moving to the kitchen.)

Ted... I'm glad you enjoy poetry. Be sure to find some actual good poetry soon. (I don't want to corrupt or harm anyone here.) Wendell Berry, for instance, is inspiring.

Greg... to stop and BE, as you wisely point out... what is it that's so hard about that? But it seems to challenge us.

Lloyd... I felt so sad reading of your troubles. How are you getting along? Let me know, as it goes.

10:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

LL -- Maybe you could collaborate with Al on "The Suburban Christian: The Musical." Set this poetry to music and you're halfway there! I can't believe how much you captured here. And it's much more fun than what I did. But hey, my post is finally up! (And my gardening is still not quite done!)

5:39 PM  
Blogger Halfmom said...

Actually, I use the commute time (please do not gasp or scold) to catch up on phone calls to my folks. They're both elderly and have had strokes, so it doesn't take much concentration to say "oh, I'm sorry", or "oh my goodness, that's not fun". This way, they get multiple phone calls per week, during the day when they're actually awake, and it makes them feel very loved and happy.

But I agree - it's hard to have fellowship with no "fellows". When possible, my friends and I go walking together - time to talk and exercise - or even go to the grocery together - we've been laughted at, but it beats no fellowship at all - and the 45 min commute each way and a long work day take a chunk of time that would otherwise be available to spend time together or do ministry together.

7:38 PM  
Blogger Lloyd Irving Bradbury said...

Lloyd Irving Bradbury said...
Hi thanks for viewing my blog i just moved from chicago to lyons. just across from riverside lawn in the forest preserve a foot bridge across tje desplains river leads to the hiverside village now i will roam the strip of forest on the banks of the river painting. natire is a gteat minidyrt to the spirit. one must walk around this area to really see what god has given us only 12 miles from chicao near the metra station at riverside i have a showing at the riverside libary until the end of this month see it if you can

3:36 AM

5:42 AM  
Blogger Craver Vii said...

'Kay, I rode my bike to the food pantry last night. There's a start.

3:55 PM  
Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

Charity... will you be my manager? (Or, at the very least, the lead singer?)

Halfmom... gasp? scold? for calling your mom? Never. (My mom would probably like me to follow your example!)

Lloyd... congratulations. I love your work.

Craver... think of the waist-trimming! Think of the time spent away from dandelion woes! (So, were you able to do any work when you got there, or were you winded from the trip? :)

4:04 PM  
Blogger Jennwith2ns said...

This is why I miss London. Way more polluted than where I live now. But I never owned a car. Any transportation I took, other than my own two feet, was public and shared, and it's easier not to rush when you're not in control of how fast you get somewhere anyway. And if you rush while walking, you just get more exercise.

4:08 PM  
Blogger spaghettipie said...

LL - Yup. 3 hours a day in the car, minimum! I prayer "walked" it some days, and that made it go by faster...and I listened to a lot of talk radio. I quit about 10 months ago to stay home with my daughter full time. Phew, talk about a load of stress off!

4:14 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

A great mind comes up with great rhymes. . . .

I have always commuted everywhere, but my husband and I love to take city vacations where we can walk and walk and watch and look and learn and let the journey be part of the fun.

Kind of twisted, to retreat to the city, eh?

4:20 PM  
Blogger Mark Goodyear said...

Alas, I haven't been able to ride my bike much due to the rain. Though in our semi-arid climate, rain is always good.

10:11 AM  

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