I like the way you move

Cruise control, An eléctrico in Lisbon, 2011

You don’t have to be from Los Angeles to know that the biggest blockbuster of the year is about to premiere in this city in under 24 hours. I shall abstain from using its screen name, the one that this man-made natural disaster-sized event is being dubbed by the media and everyone in the Southland. To be overwhelmed by the attention this freeway closure has garnered is an understatement. Without skirting the importance of the public awareness announcements and the PR that are undoubtably necessary to inform the public of this major transit closure, the amount of attention this 53-hour ‘inconvenience’ has thus received rivals the coverage of the Haiti earthquake, or even Japan. Am I wrong? Has any of this attention begged you to question our values? Or rather, be sickened by them in realizing the power of the car and the freeway? Without wanting to give the events surrounding this weekend’s closure any more time in the spotlight, I am using this theme to think about the way we move in the world.

With the sunny shadow of Portugal still somewhat fresh on my summer shoulders, over the past two post-trip months back in L.A., I’ve found myself longing to hang on to a bit of the languid rhythm endemic to the Iberian Peninsula. It’s a movement that is deliberate without being contrived. People cruise with the top down and are open to detours (“it’s about the journey, not the destination”: cliché yes, but so apropos here- and I’m not talking about driving), they don’t always signal when changing lanes, and don’t need an agenda book because the mind can manage the reasonable number of appointments and dates scheduled for the week. Yet on our side of the street, it seems that no one here can keep up with their 7-day laundry list of events and commitments without getting stressed and overwhelmed in the process. To be busy strangely garners some sort of pride or bragging rights among us. Over there I find there is a time and place for the meal, a ritual around the coffee break, a permission to step away from the computer and feel the natural world outside. There is a connection with feet, the ones that drive the body to and from its destination without the ominous shadow of the car at every step. It is all of these things which actually can be here and not just there. This melodious kind of movement is in no way fashioned for our old world friends. It’s here too, if we also are deliberate and choose to shape our world how we want it.

Take a moment to think about how you move through the world… What do we miss when we are in “5th gear” and are moving at “full speed ahead.” How has our language been shaped by the metaphor of movement? We all move at our own pace which is the beauty of being an individual in our diverse and eclectic world, so, if nothing more than for the exercise of reflection, I hope you enjoy the ride.


~ by maureenmoore on July 14, 2011.

5 Responses to “I like the way you move”

  1. Yes, news of the L.A. carmageddon has reached us in St. Louis. Los Angeles will survive–not to sound too trite about it, especially being 1500 miles away as I am. The major highway intersecting St. Louis was closed down for 2 YEARS starting in 2007 and all of the negative media predictions for its effects on life, business, commerce, real estate, etc. did not pan out. There’s a whole other story in all of this about the role of the media, but we won’t go there . . . .

    I appreciate your input on life’s movement! I have accepted the invitation to live a life of REST offered by the gospel which is based on the reality of a finished work in every area of my life, accomplished by Christ Himself FOR ME. I now live OUT OF the finished work by having my “movement” directed by the Holy Spirit. So now, it’s directed activity out of rest . . . hmmm, which same activity produces worthwhile results, fruit, what have you. As always, good news!

  2. I like that…it’s certainly a balance between personal intention and surrendering to the guidance of something bigger than ourselves.

  3. This hits a pain spot for me. As I do more in the world, I find I have less time to allow my languid latin spirit her muse time to explore, investigate and dwell. My mind and my feet are connected, but many times my heart wishes to drift in sweet space.

    • May there always be room for drifting, but yes, certainly a challenge to structure our time with intention so that the muse does not get muffled in the mix!

  4. Love this!!!

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