Day #25: “Rexting” – Texting on the Run


We all like to keep our loved ones up to date on our latest running exploits. Even if they don’t want to know. We sit back at the end of a long day – arms bent behind our heads with head resting, eyes looking into the glorious past… of this morning’s run – and we tell the story. Usually, the exciting punchline is something like: “And then my foot caught a root, and I would have gone down, but my shoelace miraculously gave way, and at the last second I caught myself!” By this time, we are excited, but our spouse — living in the real world — the one with laundry, dirty dishes and lunches to pack — hardly even blinks at the calamity averted. No worries, though, and you stare off into the distance of the distance run. The glory of this morning.

But it really is important that we runners – quixotic as we can be – connect to reality from time to time. And no time seems more important to either the initiated runner or to the loved ones left behind, then to let each other know that we are okay as we traipse through our latest adventure. Thus, I have established a new word, “Rexting.” It’s not what it sounds like, and it may only be readily available to iPhone 4s users and above. “Rexting” is revolutionary and, I am seeing, necessary. Before long, we will wonder what we did before we “rexted” – much like it’s hard to imagine life before we were able to receive every email in real time – anywhere in the world:)

And so it was that as I ran the moonlit trails on Madonna Mountain here in San Luis Obispo a few nights ago, I realized I had better check in with my wife – or I would face some heat when I got home. So I pressed and held the only button to press and hold on my iPhone – which was blaring some running podcast in my earbuds as I rejoiced to run my midnight course. And Siri tolled her “how can I help you” chime.

“Siri,” I gasped, “Text …” and I instructed her to text my wife’s phone.

“What would you like me to say?” Siri responded in her monotone cool tones.

“Hey honey – doing great. 20 minutes more to go in my run and I will be home. All is fine. I love you!”

Siri repeated back to me my message and asked if she should send it. I said yes, and – without missing a stride – journeyed onward to my next conquest, happy that my wife knew I was fine, somewhere out there on the roads, or the trails, as it were.

I couldn’t help but spread some love at this moment, joyful as I was that I had found yet another method to more efficiently feed my running addiction.

“Siri, you rock!” I encouraged my hand-held robotic sherpa.

“Was it something I said?” my digital friend responded… with just a touch of sarcasm.