wok this way

Last night on my run I encountered a real life word problem. I wish I could tell my eighth grade math teacher about it, but I didn't even pay enough attention in that class to remember his name, so I'll tell you instead. Here's what happened:

A couple of months ago I came to the realization that my body doesn't care whether I run for an hour or I run for half an hour. After HardSummer I was so burned out on working out that I decided to take two weeks off. Well, two weeks turned into two months and I hadn't moved a muscle. But even though I was less toned from not lifting weights and my goofy faux-pilates exercises, I didn't weigh any more. Whether this is a function of my wonky thyroid or just aging, I don't know. And I don't care. Fine by me.

Anyway, I ixnayed on the onglay unrays, and cut it down to 30 minutes with a break at the halfway point to do some stair lunges.

The place where I do lunges is just past the freeway, in a semi-sketchy area that's not particularly well lit. Most nights I point my phone's flashlight at the steps lest I trip on a discarded fast food container or syringe or a napping rat. Last night it was especially dark - no moon that I could see, and foggy. So I didn't notice the two people huddled together at the bottom of the first of three flights until I was upon them. Oh, hai.

I didn't want to be annoying by going back and forth right next to them, so I figured I'd double up on the bottom stairs instead. Only, I forgot how to math, because I couldn't determine how many times I needed to take that first flight in order to make up for skipping the upper two. Trying to factor in that I'd traverse the top flights when I left anyway caused my brain to make belabored whirring noises and smoke to issue from my ears (hopefully it blended in with the fog). That's when I realized that a) I am an idiot and b) I was in a real life word problem!

Ellie the Insomniac likes to climb a three-flight set of stairs twice before heading home to pen rabid screeds on her blog. If, in her efforts to compare favorably with a Paper Magazine cover model, she is thwarted by a canoodling couple 1/3 of the way down, how many times must she climb the bottom flight in order to reach her goal?

I did three sets on the first flight and called it a day, stepping carefully around the canoodlers on my way back up. Then I came home to scrawl about it, because therapy, and because I have a standing challenge from Terence to do more doodles, even though I am an alarmingly bad artist. (He says I should stretch myself creatively and that the message and intent matter more than the execution. IF ONLY.)


1. That is actually last night's correct moon phase. I looked it up. This is the kind of commitment to accuracy you'll find here on Elliequent, folks.

2. No I do not run with an upside down wok on my head. That's a ponytail. (See baby? I told you they'd laugh at me.)

3. Not to scale. But this is! (And much, much more beautiful.)