Shoes. Broken tires. Deer carcass. Mystery trash bags. These are typical things seen while driving down the highway. Yesterday I saw a new one, and had I not been driving in the snow and yuck, I would’ve stopped for a picture.
Now I wish I had, despite the weather.
Because now I think I may have seen the most spectacular concept art laid out in ages.
If I had to guess at the title of the piece it would be “Irony.”
Placed on the shoulder of the highway was a typical, wheeled office chair, turned so that the seat was facing oncoming traffic.
In the seat of the chair, someone had carefully placed a pair of white running shoes – side by side, laces out.
It my rate of speed it was hard to tell, but they looked new.
At first I just thought, how odd.
Then it hit me. It’s a statement. It epitomizes the human condition and the current irony of our lives. It just took me a moment to break it down.
To save you the effort of thinking it through, here it is.
The display was on the edge of the highway – the highway represents the rat race, the steady rush, rush, rush that is the daily marathon of our lives.
The chair is our positioning in this race. We sit in our cars and drive, drive, drive like good little commuters. Then we sit at our desks and churn out work, hoping for a raise, or recognition, or simply continued employment. From there, we sit back in our cars to race home to be with our families, where we sit in front of the computer, or the TV, and bond.
The shoes are the brilliant part. Runners. The gear that athletes wear as they run, jump, swing and tackle their way through events for our enjoyment or personal pleasure.
Athletes that are prime specimens of health.
While we, in our own pairs of runners, racing our own race, are collectively as unfit as we have ever been.
As a statement, it was profound. A reminder to slow down, to be well, to extract ourselves from the insanity of the daily marathon and appreciate the lives that we have been given.
Or maybe – just maybe – it was trash that someone didn’t want to pay to have hauled away.