Tuesday, January 26, 2016

In Praise of Friction

Yesterday I trudged over snow banks to reach the main street in the neighborhood, which was plowed and salted down to pure pavement.

It was just above freezing and last night's black ice had melted, so I had the confidence to run/walk my usual loop. Along the way I strode through sprinkles of salt crystals and the occasional glob of sand. My feet thrilled at their rough grip, at the surety of resistance, knowing that they were not going to slide out from under me.

Ah, friction! How overlooked you are, how simple but how necessary. How seldom we celebrate your presence, the way you connect us (people and animals) with the tangible world.

Given a chance, our eyes may stray to the slick, shiny surface.  It glitters, it attracts. But what thrills us most is the dull, the solid, that which keeps us in place in a tilting world.
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