The Koyaanisqatsi Workout

Today’s “random iPod shuffle track that started playing during my workout” (see also The Mandy Patinkin Workout) was The Grid, a Philip Glass composition from the 1982 Godfrey Reggio film Koyaanisqatsi.

It nearly killed me.

It’s 21 minutes long. It has all sorts of dramatic tempo changes. It generally chugs along at about 90 to 100 beats per minute, a pace that, on a stationary bicycle, is challenging to keep up with for 21 minutes solid, when you’re already 15 minutes into your pretend journey. Especially given the little bits of “no, wait, 80 bpm, okay, now 100.”

But, truth be told, it didn’t kill me. It made me stronger. I think.

And as if preordained, after speeding along to a track from a film subtitled “Life out of Balance,” during the “cool down” phase of my workout Shore Fields by Allan Rankin randomized itself into the mix:

Before we star talkin’
Would you do me a favor?
Have a look at these old pictures
There cracked and faded
Torn at the edges
But that’s the way I’m feelin’ tonight


Marc Musial's picture
Marc Musial on April 16, 2009 - 00:36

I had to write a term paper on this film in economics grade 12 class, I also had to write a paper in that same class on Blade Runner. He was a pretty cool teacher. One of my top 10 films though.

Ninja's picture
Ninja on April 29, 2009 - 16:07

Life out of Balance” is not the subtitle of Koyaanisqatsi. Koyaanisqatsi means “Life out of Balance”. It is merely a translation of the title. Powaqqatsi is the second film and that title means “Life in Transformation”. The third film, Naqoyqatsi means “Life as war”. They are Hopi phrases.…

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