The First rule of Project Mayhem is you do not ask questions.
Why? You might ask. (Uh oh, you’re already asking questions...) Questions require thought, thought implies you’re doing your own thinking, and in Project Mayhem, that’s unacceptable.
That means the Space Monkeys will have to slice off some fat and turn you into soap, but in a town like Boulder, soap will hard to come by, given the limited fat. Maybe that explains why some people walk around town in dirty clothing. I would say they’re homeless, but in Boulder appearing homeless actually is a style, so you never know. Or maybe they’re a segregated group of those attempting to hit bottom, and those appearing to hit bottom. Again, you never know.
The urge to indulge in self-destruction and the actual act of self-destruction are two entirely different things. It’s the difference between wearing non-prescription glasses for “style”-sake, and actually having to wear prescription glasses because the lens within their eyes have stressed enough to the point it no longer flexes properly, thus leaving you helpless without your precious eye-gear for the remainder of your days. Unless you get surgery.
Self Improvement Is Self Destruction. Yes, I’ve cleaned that line up a bit from it’s original delivery, though I feel it holds a bit of weight, particularly within the wide world of running. The irony is if you flip “Improvement” and “Destruction”, the line still works and retains the same amount of weight. I bet right about now you’re starting to question, “Where is he going with this?” (Uh oh, you’re breaking the first rule of Project Mayhem again...) You’re beginning to wonder why I’m taking you so far down the rabbit hole, away from your latte, away from the white noise in the background of wherever you are, away from your present reality and well within the reality of these words that to be honest, are still just spiraling down into the dark hole. Who knows? (Crap, another question...)
Running involves a daily bout of self-destruction (LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL!). And through that destruction, comes improvement. Physically, Mentally, Emotionally, All of the Above, you must be broken down to build yourself back up - quite literally. Physically, Muscles must be broken down, with a hammer until they can longer handle it, Then, (via recovery), they come back Stronger. Mentally, you must push on, and on, and on, and on until you don’t really think you can anymore. Then you run some more. The wall of Pride and Ego has to fall before you can bulldoze through it (sure, that might not make sense - but remember the first rule of Project Mayhem). Emotionally, every run and workout starts out with all the Will in the world, but this one runs parallel with “Mentally”, when you want to stop and cry on the side of the road, hoping for mommy or daddy to come hold your hand and kiss your forehead, “everything’s going to be ok sweetheart.” they’ll say. Sorry sport, but mommy and daddy ain’t here, it’s all on you to finish this workout, so buck up and quit pouting on the side of the road, you’re about to hit by someone who doesn’t care about your feelings: Big Pappa Results.
Big Pappa Results is the Godly-figure that looms over you daily, the black and white numerals of your last workout or race. There’s no hiding from Big Pappa Results, because he is everywhere. He's the reason you get out of bed before the sun rises to get in a hard workout, and he’s the reason you drown your sorrows away with alcohol when the wind is blowing against you in an endless uphill climb. Big Pappa Result, the tourist who never left. He’s everywhere, always.
Self Improvement is Self Destruction. There’s no crying baseball and there’s no hiding from Big Pappa Results. So before your next workout, when you’re sifting through the dresser drawer, searching for that musky flannel to place by your bed for tomorrow morning, before you slide on those non-prescription glasses and read an ethically challenging book by candle light, remember: Big Pappa Results is watching you. He saw you digging in your dirty laundry for clothes that smell of something that died under the refrigerator, and he saw you pick out those glasses at Claire’s Boutique for $9.99.
Some days you just have to literally run yourself into the ground, destroying all that you think matters until something climbs out of the ashes, stronger than ever. Only the survivor can describe what climbed out, and if it was worth it.
But you can’t ask because the First Rule of Project Mayhem is you do not ask questions.
I am Jack's total lack of originality.