How To Succeed In Getting A Really Good Workout Without Even Trying

Interesting experience today. So I decided to go cross-country skiing up in a local forest right around the time it was starting to get dark, around 4:00 or so (bad idea -- pub). Halfway along the trail, to my surprise, I saw another person walking on the trail a few hundred feet ahead of me. Now at this point I was becoming a little cautious because he might have been someone sketchy, and it is kind of strange to see someone just walking alone in the snow in the woods. But I hopefully assumed that it was just some old guy going out for a stroll or something.

But not only was he a sketchy townie type (long hair, unshaven, hunting jacket, crazy expression in his eyes), but he was also carrying a clearly real and presumably loaded gun. I was more than a little concerned, for one because this isn't hunting season, so I just nervously asked him what he was hunting, and he told me he was looking for coyotes, but didn't expect to find any. Then he reassured me that he "wouldn't shoot [me]. Or anyone else for that matter." Not exactly the most comforting reassurance. But I was just as civil as I could be and then hauled ass with this potentially psychotic guy carrying a loaded gun at my back. Needless to say, it was a great workout getting to a place where the trail split so I could get out of there.

On a more serious note though, being alone with your back to someone you don't entirely trust holding a loaded gun gave me a taste, however minute, of what it's like for these soldiers in Iraq who are faced with the prospect that the guy next to them on the street could be an enemy who's going to shoot them or blow them up. It's a tough situation to be in and I respect all those who are putting themselves in harm's way to serve.

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