Opinion: All the news that’s fit to sprint

Commentary by Dick Wolfsie

Mary Ellen has a Fitbit to keep track of her walking. I am not a walker myself, although I have walked back several promises I made when we got married, as well as three New Year’s resolutions. That’s about as much exercise as I’m comfortable with.

I do walk to my office every day (it’s not my fault I work from home) and I walk to the pro shop to get my golf cart. Oh, and to the garage to get on my riding lawn mower. Maybe I don’t give myself enough credit. The NASEWA (National Association of Something Else to Worry About) recommends 10,000 steps a day, something most people won’t consciously do. Unconscious exercise sounds a lot less strenuous.

We had trouble getting the Fitbit and the laptop to sync, so we called Kevin, our tech guy. Kevin is used to dealing with people who sit in front of a computer all day, and he thought that helping them set up their Fitbit could lead his clients to begin a physical fitness regimen — leaving less time for them to download viruses and malware, the bread and butter of his repair service.

“I can’t find your dongle,” Kevin said to Mary Ellen as he fumbled though the Fitbit box. “Does your husband have one?”

I didn’t know what a dongle was, but I’m pretty sure in Yiddish it’s a dirty word. I learned that it’s a small plug-in that allows electronic devices to communicate with each other. I’d always called it a thingamajig.

Soon, Kevin got everything to work. Everything.

“Did you get a good night’s sleep?” I asked Mary Ellen the next morning.

“Let me check. It says I did, but for some reason I’m exhausted.”

I reminded her that the Fitbit vibrates on the wrist as a warning if you haven’t moved for an hour. We had no idea how to turn that application off. I told Mary Ellen she needed her sleep to be more restless. Yeah, I actually said that.

I don’t want a Fitbit of my own. Instead, I plan to follow my wife around. I’ll never reach that 10,000 goal, but it’s a step in the right direction.