As you may already have heard, we inhabitants of Earth are in for some serious roughage on December 21st. This time they’re not kidding: Here comes the lock-cinch, ineluctable, this-time-we-mean-it, End of The World.
Some guy named John has a website all about it. Here we read the following:
Is the world really going to end on December 21 2012? That is perhaps the most frequently asked question I receive from visitors to my website www.December212012.com. The short answer is most likely no.
This is reassuring. And yet . . .
However, we can be certain that some very dramatic and devastating changes are coming, and these changes will most definitely represent the end of the world “AS WE KNOW IT.”
You’re telling me. I’m already experiencing a taste of catastrophe. Martin Johnson, my personal trainer, is moving back to Florida tomorrow. Today’s our final workout.
This may not seem like the End of The World to you, but for me it’s a lot like being struck by an asteroid the size of the Cow Palace. For me, the end of the world “AS WE KNOW IT” has arrived ahead of schedule.
I’ll admit that ennui in the face of impending doom is right up my alley. I wrote about a movie last year called Melancholia, in which the heroine (Kirsten Dunst; how sad) falls into a kind of benumbed torpor as the world prepares for a collision with another planet. I live most of my life in a benumbed torpor. Just about the only time I am not in a benumbed torpor is when Martin’s got me doing crunches and lunges.
And now here we are.
Actually, there’s some serious physics involved here. Without a trainer to keep this body in motion, I am in jeopardy of something called negative entropy. This is serious stuff. Here’s what the British physician/philosopher Raymond Tallis says about it:
. . . living organisms are very highly ordered systems and are, consequently, improbable. They have what the physicist and prophet of molecular biology Erwin Schrödinger called “negative entropy.” They are intrinsically unstable. Their endurance, unlike that of a rock, consequently has to be earned: their order has to be actively maintained.
Schrödinger nailed it, didn’t he? If ever there was a highly ordered system that was intrinsically unstable, it’s me. And as Schrödinger would have said (though in German), ya gotta wake up every morning and maintain it.
This merely confirms what Martin has been telling me since I met him at Fitness Together last May. I have to eat right and exercise or my body is going to hell. Sooner, I should say, rather than later.
Here’s something I wrote about him last summer:
My trainer, a young guy named Martin Johnson, claims that I’m completely responsible for my progress. I claim that Martin—who says, “Me? All I do is count your reps.”—is the reason I’m still showing up four mornings a week. Showing up, it turns out, is the key to training. And if you’ve got someone with a sunny temperament, who won’t let you get down on yourself, who’s thinking all the time about the best techniques for making you fit and ensuring that you don’t get injured along the way—and who, meanwhile, cheerily brushes aside all your whiny reluctance to move a muscle and says “Niiiice” when you try hard—then you do keep showing up, and you start to get fit.
So what’ll I do now, with Martin departing for the land of the palm trees? First, I’m going to wish him all the luck in the world. If it hadn’t been for him, my glutes would never have known their one shining moment of fitness. Second, I’m going to try soldiering on awhile with Eric, who will take Martin’s place tomorrow. (Martin who, right?) And third, I’m going to hope that the world doesn’t end on December 21st, as I’ve still got plenty of work to do on my quads and hammies.
The quote by Raymond Tallis is from his fascinating book, Hunger.