College Presidents and Accountability

As summer came to a close this year, I found myself sitting on a blanket at our local college’s faculty and staff annual picnic. It’s a normal sort of picnic, with normal sort of picnic food and normal sort of picnic entertainment. Live music made up of a faculty band playing rock music from the 60’s and 70s. Inflatables. A playground. Screaming children.

And then up walked the college president.

“Elizabeth,” he said. “I haven’t seen you lately.”

Okay, so yes, we live in a small town, and my husband works at a small college, and I go to church with the college president. So it didn’t surprise me that he knew my name. That’s what community is. This is what I tell myself every day.

No, it was my name followed by the I-haven’t-seen-you-lately that is the occasion of this post. (I do realize that I’m operating a few weeks behind these days.)

This is what he meant: I haven’t seen you lately at the gym.

Ah yes, friends. When I go to the gym at 6 in the morning, there is one other person already on the treadmill, cranking out the calories. One other person. And he happens to be the president.

And yes, friends, he notices when I don’t go.

That’s accountability, right?

It’s a good thing, right?


That’s what I keep telling myself…at 6 o’clock in the morning.


5 comments on “College Presidents and Accountability

  1. stephen says:

    Glad you have someone to keep you accountable and running.

    So… have you gone back to the gym?

  2. Darla says:

    I find this interesting. I have attended several exercise classes at the Pavilion and after awhile you get to know the regulars. Sometimes I just don’t feel like going or another activity/responsibility comes into play. I find it interesting when some of the other regulars ask me if I am feeling better (implying that is why I was not in attendance) or a few have actually questioned my commitment. I find myself feeling defensive. I see exercising as something I do that is good for me, but do not want to be obsessive about it and feel badly that I don’t make it every time. I have experienced how good it makes me feel and have been an exerciser for 40+ years and will keep doing it as long as I can. So . . . Give me a break!!! Lighten up everybody!!! And, I know more often than not, when someone asks me where I have been or if I am doing ok, it comes from a genuine concern of a caring person! Go figure! And happy exercise to all!

    • elizabeth says:

      Thanks for sharing, Darla. I don’t tend to feel defensive, just guilty. 🙂 But clearly I have issues!

      What’s somewhat amusing about this conversation was that I had actually tried to go to the gym during the summer and was locked out. I ran outside instead most of the summer, which is good, too. And when I tried to give that as a reason, I felt like I was making up excuses! Even though I wasn’t.

      Yes, issues.

  3. Judy Miller says:

    Nice! I have to thank Patti Miller for turning me on to your blog.

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