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GCR #14 – RYS – Ashwell – RYS

The use of a gold card is not essential to Gold Card Running. The gold card is now elevated to a mythical, spiritual realm: it explains the first move, the first run, it provides context and meaning tinged with irony as it languishes defunct, de-activated; a redundant relic in a folder somewhere. Perhaps I will never own an active gold card again…

Walking and running are more important now that we are more attached to our abodes, snails clinging to our shells, workers of the rebooted cottage industry. Walks are significant events. Some workers of the new cottage industry schedule walks in their work-calendars. As the walk approaches the calendar pings into the virtual meeting. A run gives you greater variation and more distance. The only reason to walk when you can run is that you’re tired or you want to talk at the same time.

I believe the home will assume a startling new importance in Third Wave civilization. The rise of the prosumer, the spread of the electronic cottage, the invention of new organizational structures in business, the automation and demassification of production, all point to the home’s re-emergence as a central unit in the society of tomorrow — a unit with enhanced rather than diminished economic, medical, educational, and social functions. Yet it is unlikely that any institution — not even the home — will play as central a role as the cathedral or the factory did in the past. For the society is likely to be built around a network rather than a hierarchy of new institutions. https://archive.org/details/The_Third_Wave_Alvin_Toffler/mode/2up

Dominetics, telecommuting. The ideas have all been here before prompted by oil shocks and the fear of nuclear war. Cottage industries may be robust to failure, but it only works if you’ve got a nice cottage.

But we are social animals. It is perhaps true that the only things that really matter are the things we do together. Our senses are attuned to understanding each other in person. Is that strictly true? Remote communion requires more imagination, more empathy, more energy, more time because the bandwith is reduced, the information flow compressed. A Noisy Channel Coding Theorem for Remote Working: spend more energy on communication to reduce the chance of misunderstandings.

The word ‘redundant’ is not usually seen positively, but redundancy is necessary when there is a risk of losing a message through a noisy channel. Language is encoded digitally but its richness lies in its analogue, non-binary, circling, ambiguous, sometimes mysterious, unintentionally revealing nature. Kleist wrote how thinking generates and completes itself through the act of writing. Goethe wrote 20,000 letters or so. We need a greater richness of language to telecommune.

Redundancy is a central feature of running in the following senses. Superfluous, excessive; surplus unnecessary or also Characterized by superfluity or excess in some respect: reduce unnecessary thoughts, settle down, attempt efficient movement. Accept the repetition, find detail that adds colour.

Of a component of a framework, or a force or moment on it: capable of being removed without causing loss of rigidity or also containing duplicated parts such that its function is not impaired in the event of failure of a part; able to continue to function correctly when a part of it malfunctions: your body as a framework with components, which may feel like they are failing, but it is usually possible to adjust in a way that makes it possible to continue.

On the way back from Ashwell I need to connect from Kingsfield Way to Kelshall. Blue lines on the map co-incide with public paths for about 2km and I mistakenly project this connection forward, ignoring the blueness as a hint that my distracted assumption is off track. When is a path on a map ever blue? In fact (of course) blue lines trace dry ditches rather than paths. But I persist in tracing blue lines and in an attempt to take a “path” beside a ditch I change direction too quickly on rough ground and I trip and fall and roll over and stand back up again with the full redundancy of the human apparatus at work: an elbow to cushion the impact, arms and legs to control the momentum, a hand to push off, a leg to push off again, balance regained.

There was a dead rabbit along the way, bright-yellow rapeseed, a forbidding farm, farm fields that looked snow-speckled in the sun, isolated churches.

 2:47:35 Moving Time

This entry was posted in: GCR

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