Big ideas and grand schemes take up most of the space in my head, Modern Philosophers, but it’s the little things that constantly keep my brain preoccupied.
These tiny distractions then derail my progress towards total happiness, and I have no one but myself to blame.
At the moment, I’m totally distracted by my quest to even out the suntan on my arms.
Believe it or not, brain cells have been assigned to figure out how to bring the sun’s warm kiss to the albino wasteland that is my upper arms and shoulders.
Yes, it’s totally ridiculous, but then again, so am I.
I’ve been running for sixteen week now, which means the parts of my body that are uncovered when I’m sweating up a storm five days a week, are deeply tanned.
Those parts that I cover because no one wants to see them, even after I’ve lost forty pounds, are as pale as a ghost who saw a ghost and has also been locked away in a windowless attic for two hundred years.
Why can’t a ghost escape from a windowless attic? That’s a great question, but not at all the topic of this post, so try to stay focused.
As you can see from the following photo, which I must warn readers is graphic and horrifying in nature, there has been a definite line drawn in the skin on my arms…
While it looks like the arm of a healthy, living man has been grafted onto the upper arm stump of a corpse, I assure you that this is a photo of my actual right arm, taken mere moments ago.
My sleeve is rolled up because I was, once again, out walking in the harsh summer sun, desperately trying to bring some color to the palest arms in Maine.
It’s gotten so bad, that I’ve taken to battling with the sleeves of my running shirts while I’m out on a run.
I’ll roll up the sleeve so that my shoulders are exposed, but as I sprint at nearly the speed of light down my route, gravity pulls down the sleeves again.
So I’m constantly rolling them up as I run.
Knowing how clumsy I am, you must realize that this is a recipe for disaster. I’m bound to either get tangled up in my shirt, which will cause me to fall and fracture both the tan and pale parts of my arm, or I will wander out into traffic, and a passing vehicle will launch me into the next town.
That’s a selfie taken after Sunday’s run. The sleeve remained up, but my upper arms also remained pale.
As you can see, all the sun went directly to my nose.
And still I will not quit. Every time I go out for a walk, I roll up my sleeves a little, hoping that my alabaster arms will roast ever so slightly.
I know my upper arms, which are whiter than the average Mainer, are sixteen weeks behind my lower arms in the suntan department, but it’s time for that part of my body to step it up a little.
If I can drag my ass out for a run five days a week and sweat away forty pounds, then the least my upper arms can do is bronze it up a smidge.
I’m tired of all the farmer’s tan and redneck jokes. I’m just a city boy, who isn’t cool enough to rip the sleeves off his running shirts. I shouldn’t have to suffer this pale, pasty indignity just because I have a little respect for my wardrobe.
Of course, the Star Wars Geek in me is was reminded of that famous scene from The Empire Strikes Back. Yoda is putting Luke through his Jedi training in the swamps of Dagobah, and the ancient Jedi uses the moment to teach his student about the Force.
You all know Yoda’s famous quote…
A clear line there is, between the Dark Side and the Light. If cross that line you do, no turning back will there be.
Obviously, Yoda was talking about the two sides of the Force that every Jedi must learn to balance, but he very well could have been speaking about the clear division between the light and dark sides of my arms.
This makes me at least Jedi adjacent since this very event in my life was predicted a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far way, right?
Was Yoda really speaking to me? Perhaps warning me about the perils of skin cancer? Should I give up this obsession with the dark side of my arms, and just be happy with my weird, yet distinct look?
More importantly, what does Rey prefer?
I’m a pale, pasty dude, like my father was before me…
Don’t fight the pale, Austin. You’d probably just burn the upper parts, anyway! I have given in to my golfer’s tan long ago. 🙂
Ha! Maybe you’re right. 🙂