Lots of people are great at going full-blown radical to pursue a life that matters. Shane Claiborne, for example, or John the Baptist.

I’m not there yet.

I care about farmers and organic food, but my favorite flavor of ice cream is made from mostly fake things. I have reservations about the NFL, but I love the Green Bay Packers so much that one time I watched a playoff game in Spanish because I was in the Dominican Republic and that was my only option. (It was awesome.) I want to invest time in things that matter, but I also want to watch This Is Us and American Ninja Warrior and The Great British Baking Show.

Enter: the slant route.

In football, a slant route is when you run straight ahead and then break off to run at an angle.

This is my new route for everyday life. Because I’ve learned that I will, in fact, lose my mind if I dissect every single factor of my existence and break it down to its most honorable form. At my core, I’m not very radical. I’m very regular.

So I’m running the slant—which, by definition, is both a little bit regular and a little bit radical.

Enthusiastic Packers fandom, occasional fake ice cream, a wide variety of televised entertainment? Doing it. Running straight at it.

Choosing to stay in Harrisburg, treating friends like family, living a life that does not follow a traditional American trajectory? Also doing that. Running at an unconventional angle all the way.

I’m not suggesting that this is the best way to live. I’m also not suggesting that everyone should stop running their own routes and run this way instead.

But for me, I’ve needed to find a way to live life well and not go crazy in the process, and running the slant is my best attempt to do just that.

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Other Things You Might Want To Know

I’m Beka Watts. Hi 🙂

I have two other websites floating around the internet: bekawatts.com—portfolio, archives, a domain name to return to if in a year or five I’m no longer running the slant, and footballfornormalgirls.com—archived passion project that may or may not be resurrected someday.

I’m from upstate New York and currently reside in central Pennsylvania with Jenny (the kind of roommate and friend everyone hopes for but few are lucky enough to find) and Olive the Coonhound (the kind of hunting dog you can probably hear right now, wherever you are, no matter how far away).

I love everything about food—cooking it, eating it, reading about it, writing about it. For my 32nd birthday, a bunch of friends rallied to surprise me with a green KitchenAid mixer who was promptly named Rosemary.

I quit my full-time job in 2017 in exchange for an unconventional journey named Hinterland.

Somehow, the most popular thing I’ve ever written is a post about the one time I spontaneously dyed my hair red and then tried to un-dye it with food coloring and dish soap. (It worked!)

I don’t know where this little website is going or how long it’ll last, but for today, I’m really glad you’re here.

Jenny, me, and Olive the Aforementioned Coonhound, who only looks like Frankenstein when she’s wearing a collar that encourages the use of her Indoor Voice. This one sprays citronella and makes our house smell like a backyard barbecue on the 4th of July. 

Roll the Credits

The slant route, as a concept, by Jenny England.

Header video by Jenny England, too 🙂

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