Finished goal of running the distance of 2,080 miles from Lafayette, LA to Washington D.C and back!!! 339.1 miles

0.0 miles run this week.
Daily running average for the week is 0.00 miles per day.
Total amount run in the past 800 days is 2,419.1 miles.
Daily running average overall is 3.02 miles per day.

Day227 Wednesday 04/13/11

ran 4.5 miles


Jonas unclenched his hands, not realizing how tightly he was frivolously gripping at the steamy air in front of his face, and took another step toward the door. He raised his right hand slowly as though a weight was upon it and pressed through his cloud of breath with the intent to knock. His hand fell effortlessly into question. Unsure, like a squirrel that couldn’t decide whether to stay on one side of the road or the other as cars drove by, Jonas’ thoughts scurried left and right of right and wrong. He placed his knock back in his pocket, turned around, and mashed a new path of red and yellow tracks.

Next to what remained of a skeleton-like crepe myrtle Jonas found a seat on the curb of a quiet road a few blocks over. Lining the concrete edge were numerous cigarette butts, smashed acorns, occasional beer cans, endless leaves, random fallen branches, and unidentifiable scraps of paper. Nestled between a busted shoe and a faded can of beer was a wet dollar bill nearly torn in half. Out of the corner of Jonas’ eye was what appeared to be a wayward bum curled up in the fetal position, sleeping. His body was a crescent shape like that of a cat or dog trying to keep in their body heat.

Jonas was amazed that such things would simply be found on the side of a road. He picked up the dollar bill and put it in his backpack almost unconvinced that it was real. He was one block from a set of train tracks, a halfway house was across the street, a police car was advancing in his direction, an unsavory prostitute was giving him eyes and skin from the parking lot of a closed down barber shop on the other side of the road, a man was sleeping on the curb of a street next to him and, amidst all of this, he happened to find a dollar bill.

He thought nothing more of it and took a seat among the rubbish. Jonas pulled his book of unknown poems out of his back pocket and opened it up to page thirty-four as randomly as if he had opened to page seventy-eight.

The type of poetry Jonas liked most, as though quality and good craft were a gaping pair of incorrigible bucked teeth, tended to be strikingly inferior and poorly crafted. His opinion was that anything widely popularized was almost automatically incredulous. Wide popularization was the money idea put forth by the same opportunists who placed Van Gogh’s “Starry Night” on coffee mugs and made Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” a ring tone on cell phones. Inferiority and poor craft, according to Jonas, were equally as beautiful as anything else and stood no chance of being ruined or diluted by mass production, corporate sponsorship, general commercialization, or posthumous infringement of original intent and purpose. Jonas felt that a long road of potential progress before him was far greater than reaching an ultimate end of exploitation and misunderstanding. Jonas felt sorry for any fool who spent his entire life trying to make millions of people from any one given region concur on a single topic, an idea or a painting, foolishly conjectured or crafted in the name of politics or art. These people ended up on t-shirts, coffee mugs and posters until their messages and their ideas became so generalized and unremarkable that the most undeserving and uneducated minds available picked them up in thrift stores because they were fashionable five years before.

The poems in this book were important to Jonas for the one reason that the book had no author, no name, and all of the poems were untitled. At a garage sale, under a set of fluted plastic salt and pepper shakers and on top of a broken clock radio, Jonas had found the book and purchased it for $0.37. He had talked them down from $0.45. It drew him in as an act that another person had made with the full knowledge that there would be no payoff. Why would somebody spend hours writing letters, words, sentences and paragraphs on pieces of paper when they knew there would be no distinguishing factor or monetary reward, thereafter? It made perfect sense to Jonas and that was exactly why he had been carrying the untitled book around for three years.

He tucked the book back into his pocket and stood up. He breathed in the urban decay of his own generation’s self-wrought surroundings, ignored the redheaded hooker at what used to be Ike’s Barber Shop, and advanced in the direction of the crescent figure sleeping on the curb. Jonas gave him a mild nudge. When the man did not respond he gave him a restrained push. All Jonas wanted was a Bic or a match but he could see that nothing short of accosting the prostitute or standing on the man’s despondent head would get his cigarette lit.

He attempted to glance unnoticeably at the young woman across the street. She saw him looking in her direction and gave him a wink. Jonas stepped over the curled up man, brushed by the skeletal crepe myrtle, and walked to the old barbershop. She saw him coming and smacked her gum a little harder like an excited dog wagging its tail for attention. She spit out the gum and lit a cigarette as though inhaling smoke through her lungs and blowing it out of her mouth somehow made her seem like a better product or a more attractive business proposition. She was playing the role of whore like an amateur porn star in a poorly directed, underfinanced, failed adult film.

Jonas contributed nothing in capturing the scene as he walked up completely disinterested in everything she represented. As he got closer and closer she suddenly fell out of character. She tucked the hint of flesh she was teasing him with back into her armpit-soiled tube top and quickly zipped up her raggedy jacket. She took an unnaturally long drag from her cigarette and stood paralyzed with disbelief. Under her breath she mumbled three words as though she were asking an impossible question.

"Jonas Martin Cassidy?"

1,419.5 miles to go.

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