A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, which my phone’s pedometer records. You’re supposed to hit ten thousand steps per day, which comes out to about five miles, except I’m pretty sure the pedometer overestimates distance, and when I went to Paris recently, it said I was walking, like, twenty-plus miles a day. Now, I was walking a ton, but that’s insane — one day it was twenty-seven miles, which is more than a marathon, and there’s no way I walked a marathon in one day. Also, separately, but sort of connected, the GPS was working in Paris for some reason, even though I didn’t have internet there on my phone. I’d downloaded the Google map of Paris beforehand — you can do that now — and somehow it knew where I was anywhere on the map. It made such a difference, not having to take out a paper map and look like a befuddled American tourist. They can still tell you’re one off the bat, and when you try to order something in your high school French they immediately ask you a follow-up question in English, but it’s nice, at least, not to have to consult a guidebook for directions every two minutes while you walk. Where was I? Oh, yeah, the pedometer — maybe being in Europe screwed with it, but as I said, the GPS worked, so that would suggest it knew where it was and how much distance I’d covered, and I even entered my height in the health data to make it more accurate. Funny thing I discovered — you can also enter “sexual data” there, including — I swear — cervical mucus quality, and, get this: you can “share” that information online. You can share with the internet what your cervical mucus quality is: dry, sticky, creamy, water, and egg white. We’ve come so far as a civilization.
January 4, 2017