So, 48 hours into the Happy Herbivore's 100k steps in March challenge (linky a post or two below; I'm too tired to re-link because I am a lousy blogger) the original plan broke down. She'd put up a nice, easy Google doc for people to put their names on a page and add the number of steps they did each day, to share their accomplishments, and in less than 48 hours, the document was unusable because people went in and wrote their own code, or some such entitled "I know better than you and I can do it my way" shit, and screwed it up for everybody. Now the plan is some sort of "send screen shots of your step count" and that's too much like work for me. I'm still going to log my steps this month, and aim for 10k a day, but I'm doing it for me, not for prizes. Not that I was doing it for prizes to begin with, but way to kill a simple, fun little shared activity, assholes.
And experiences like this are why, when I get a wild dream that I'm going to give up my day job and find some niche thing and run a business off the internets and make Sophie's dream come true with a work at home job, I realize how hard it really is. Lindsay is a very nice, very smart (lawyer) very sincere person, and she's endlessly dealing with entitled assholes, er, I mean the public.
It wasn't just the breaking of the Google doc that got me - it was the whiiinning on the Facebook page. This was intended to be a very simple, relaxed, playful challenge: Walk 100k steps in 4 weeks. Anybody who hit 100k over FOUR WEEKS was in the running for a prize drawing. It was simple and fun, just walking. This isn't a difficult goal, do-able for most ambulatory humans, and really as simple as it gets, with a goal of encouraging people to think about walking more. It wasn't a competition, and it was just focused on walking, and aiming for 10k steps a day, or at least the 100k in four weeks (which even this liberal arts major can see is a hell of a lot less than 10k every day). Share your steps on a page, make progress, think about your challenges, make it a community of people trying to be more active.
A noble goal, destroyed by assholes who immediately made it a competition and all about them. Everything from questions about how to count other forms of exercise, because the idea of counting steps with a pedometer wasn't special enough for their specialness, to needy neediness about being embarrassed to share how few steps were logged, oh, make me feel better, I crave validation from strangers on the interwebs - Jesus Christ, sometimes I just fucking hate people. This was so easy, so very easy, and a mob of assholes just mucked it all up.
So, this is not going to stop me from doing this my own way. I am wearing my pedometer every day, and logging my steps each night on my Google calendar. Tonight's step count is 9782. I'm averaging around 10k a day, even on work days, simply by being more aware of the need to move, and wearing my pedometer keeps me honest. So thanks Lindsay for the inspiration. I'm sorry that once again, the general assholery of the general population went and screwed up a simple, easy, good idea.