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Eyes Wide Shut

Many years ago in the past, while running, I decided to try to shut my eyes and see how many steps I could take at the same pace without actually seeing where I was going. I thought of it as a combination of putting faith in my own capacity to run straight and faith in the universe not to harm me, like some kind of mental/spiritual exercise.

If I’m running on the ring road in Central Park, and there are no people nearby to worry about smashing into, I find I can do ten steps easily, twenty with difficulty, and then I start to get panicky. I imagine I’m going to crash into the sidewalk and trip and fall. I’ve done forty, but feel very unsafe at that point.

Running on the beach I once did 140 steps, but that’s cheating a little, since you can feel the surf at the edge of the sea and know which way is too far left or too far right. But even then, at 100 or so I got mysteriously uneasy.

Somehow, at least for me, it’s harder than it seems.

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