Goose Steps (not the Nazi kind)

It was with great alarm that I read about the Gaustad family “Shuffle to Buffalo” project. Mother Goose and her son Paul Goose have been forcing young children to walk from Portland, Oregon to Buffalo, New York. Call me an old softie, but I think it’s totally barbaric to make seven-year-olds march 2,600 miles across the country. When I read that the first graders were being bullied into swimming across the Great Lakes, I seriously considered calling social services. (Lake Erie is notoriously filthy and is certainly no place for youngsters who do not wish to contract hepatitis.)

Good thing first graders can’t read.

But wait! On closer inspection, rather than a forced march, the “Shuffle to Buffalo” turned out to be a program designed to encourage physical activity in children. The first and second graders in Mother Goose’s P.E. class wore pedometers, and over the course of several weeks they measured enough steps to symbolically “walk” from Portland to Buffalo.

I am a fervent devotee of the sedentary lifestyle. Why should I move about when my computer and my viola are sitting right here? No, walking around isn’t for me. However, I am inspired by the Geese and their altruistic attempts to save youngsters from a fate such as mine. My heart is warmed by the story of youngsters joining together to accomplish a long term goal that encourages fitness, requires math, and promotes the City of Buffalo to a bunch of hippie children in Portland. Perhaps I can learn something myself from the “Shuffle to Buffalo”.

Maybe it’s not too late for me!

In honor of the Gaustad’s program, I have decided to begin my own project to “walk” from Buffalo to Portland. I happen to know a lot of people in Portland (including my younger sister), and I travel there frequently, so the trip has some emotional significance to me. It may take some time, but I figure with a little devotion, and a lot of hard work, I will be slimmed down and in Portland in no time flat. I believe it was Confucius who said, “A journey of 2,600 miles to Portland, Oregon begins with a single step”.

This afternoon I clipped on my pedometer and began my life changing “journey” to Portland! For posterity, I have decided to keep a detailed journal of my trip.


1:00-2:30pm: Clipped on pedometer. Looked at internet for one and a half hours. I think I tricked the pedometer into recording a few steps by shifting occasionally in my chair. (23 steps recorded)

2:30pm: Walked from couch to bathroom. Round trip, the journey was a surprising 50 steps. I’m practically in Portland already! (73 steps recorded)

2:30-3:00pm: Watched DVRed episode of “Cheers” (Seriously, guys. “Cheers” was really funny. If you have a DVR, just program it to record “Cheers” all the time. I promise you won’t be sorry.) I have no idea why, but the pedometer recorded 36 steps while I was watching television. Getting to Portland is going to be a breeze. (109 steps recorded)

3:00pm: It’s time for a healthy snack! The trip from the couch to the refrigerator is 41 steps round trip. (151 steps recorded)

3:15 pm: Decide that I need a beverage to wash down my snack. Back to the kitchen! (193 steps recorded)

Red wine: It’s the healthy thing to do.

3:15-4:30pm: Look at internet while making periodic trips to kitchen to replenish fluids. (315 steps recorded)

4:30-6:30pm: Take 2 hour power nap. Pedometer fell off during nap, so sadly, only 4 steps were recorded during nap. (319 steps recorded)

6:30pm: Call it a day! No one does anything productive after 6:30pm, right?


I’m not sure about the math involved with getting to Portland on foot. I figure, even at this accelerated pace, it will probably take me a few weeks to accumulate the steps necessary, but I am totally devoted to this project. Look out, Portland! Here I come!

23 Responses to “Goose Steps (not the Nazi kind)”

  1. 1 Schnookie December 12, 2007 at 7:13 pm

    Katebits, you are truly an inspiration to us all! I almost — almost felt compelled to get up and join you in this excellent venture. But then I realized my pedometer is in the other room, and I just really didn’t want to walk all the way in there to get it, so maybe I’ll start tomorrow.

    (Oh, and needless to say, this is BRILLIANTLY FUNNY. Have I ever mentioned anything like that here before?)

  2. 2 Pookie December 12, 2007 at 7:27 pm

    If hearty laughs and guffaws were steps, I’d have walked to Portland and back reading this post!

    (If you change “post” to “blog” you have my permission to use that blurb on your Martle-esque “Katebits is the Greatest Woman to Ever Breathe” sidebar.)

  3. 3 elise December 12, 2007 at 9:24 pm

    kate! i am laughing my ass off!!!!! does that count for some steps? i’m totally into the Geese challenge. perhaps i shall walk to Brewbakers…

  4. 4 Patty (in Dallas) December 12, 2007 at 10:30 pm

    Oh, my gosh, that is hilarious.

    Also, it looks like a good plan to me. I’m going to start my pedometer right before I go buy some wine. That should give me a good head start.

  5. 5 Shane December 12, 2007 at 11:35 pm

    Dear Katebits,

    On what channel do you watch Cheers? It was always one of my favourite shows, but I haven’t seen it in syndication for at least several years. (it used to be on nick@nite & tv land).

    Your devoted fan,


  6. 6 Sam December 12, 2007 at 11:47 pm

    You… are a nerd.

    (I’m assuming your hike won’t interfere with our hockey date on the 22nd?)

  7. 7 Matt December 13, 2007 at 12:13 am

    I realize it’s wildly off-topic, but am I the only one that is frightened by that cupcake? It looks truly demonic, as if it’s just biding time until it can enthrall me with delicious frosting and impale my soul upon those spikes of pure sugary evil.

    On a side note, this comment written after a 10-block walk to the store for a bottle of scotch and the subsequent christening of said bottle.

  8. 8 zot December 13, 2007 at 1:22 am


  9. 9 kristin December 13, 2007 at 1:33 am

    I was thinking that the cupcake looked good…especially since it appears to be 93% frosting.


  10. 10 alix December 13, 2007 at 2:48 am

    Hilarious! Marry me. Or just marry Goose. But invite me to your fitness filled wedding.

  11. 11 Amy December 13, 2007 at 8:55 am

    The Geese are covering physical health with the kids. You’ve upped the ante by stressing proper nutrition and hydration while walking.

  12. 12 Schnookie December 13, 2007 at 12:24 pm

    The Geese are covering physical health with the kids. You’ve upped the ante by stressing proper nutrition and hydration while walking.

    It’s so true! Katebits is offering a priceless public service with this post!

    And Matt, I agree that there’s something very sinister about that ridiculous cupcake.

  13. 13 Katebits December 13, 2007 at 12:34 pm

    Thanks to everyone who laughed at this post!

    I think that laughing totally counts as steps.

    Shane, it look like my DVR is recording Cheers at 10:30 on WNGS (Ch 11 in Buffalo Time Warner) and on TVLand at 8AM. God luck to you!

    I agree the cupcake is redonk, but until you pointed it out, I didn’t see it’s sinister qualities. I only ate a part of it, and it was quite delicious.

  14. 14 jonhoepfinger December 13, 2007 at 12:34 pm

    We could have a local blog competition, on which blogger gets to Portland quicker.

    There would be a blog tracking the progress. Like Katebits is currently stuck in Toledo, Heather is out in Gary, while GCFB is all the way out in the Dakotas, but is lost.

    Who ever has the most steps that day is the Goose Stepper of the Day.

  15. 15 Katebits December 13, 2007 at 1:02 pm

    Oh, Jon, that’s a funny idea! Goose Stepper of the Day! Ha! I think that if I add in the steps I took walking out to my car and into work this morning, I might be at the Starbucks on Bidwell by now. Maybe.

  16. 16 Sandi December 13, 2007 at 2:34 pm

    Hi! I found your blog through my friends(My Safety is Havard’s blog).

    I just wanted to say that I have been reading your blog today and it is awesome! You are too hilarious!=) I will definitely have to keep reading=)

    And that you are a fellow Sabres fan as well. I love Goose and Pie, well all of them.

  17. 17 Katebits December 13, 2007 at 3:26 pm

    Hi, Sandi! Thanks for reading TWC! I’m glad you like it. :D

  18. 18 kr2128 December 13, 2007 at 7:22 pm

    The Goose is getting kids (and Katebits) out there living healthy, he’s getting into flour fights while making cookies for sick kids (, and I heard Jochen once say that he “makes fun of him” in the morning until he stops being crabby (nobody likes a grumpy Jochen, trust me.) Now I know Goose rooms with Pomerdoodle on the road, so I’m guessing all the pleasentness is effecting the Goose. And somehow making his game more aggresive at the same time. Weird.

  19. 19 goose stepper (Yes I am the Nazi kind) February 17, 2009 at 5:36 pm

    LOL @ that chick f’ed up on wine picture. I love it the most.


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