The Cult Issue




Welcome to POSSESSED #45: The Cult Issue.

What do cults have to do with running? You might think nothing at all. But let me direct your attention to the dictionary that came free with my computer, which defines a ‘cult’ as a ‘system of religious veneration and devotion directed towards a particular figure, object, or activity.’ Now, what activity requires—nay, demands—more devotion and veneration than running? Name even one. Swimming? Come on. Who gets up at 5 AM to go swimming? No one. Public pools don’t even open till noon, and you’d be hard-pressed to find a swimmer who spends upwards of $1500 on swimming shoes each year. Running, on the other hand, is immensely cult-like, and runners are the cult’s obsessive constituents. Take you, for example. You are currently reading an editor’s letter in a magazine about running. That’s weird. That’s culty. After all, isn’t running just a case of going for an extremely fast walk? Why are you interested in a publication about that? I’ll tell you why, because you’re in the cult, my friend. You are obsessed. And the following collection of features and departments is dedicated to you.

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