OK, maybe shin splints is a bit of an exaggeration. Let's just call it sore muscles.
See, I have a treadmill. In the basement, where the "home theater" is. And I've come up with a brilliant idea. Instead of watching television while I walk on the treadmill (which drives me crazy because of the inconsistency of the programming, not to mention the advertisements, which sap my will to live) or reading a book (the light is bad and there's nowhere to actually put the book, so I have to hold it) I'll just walk on the treadmill while I watch every movie I've never seen. I mean, just think! I'll finally get around to experiencing the Porkies franchise, not to mention the collected works of Charles Bronson.
After all, I already have a shitload of DVDs and a Netflix account. How could I go wrong?
This is how: I decided to watch Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets while I walked on the treadmill. Well. Do you know how long that movie is? It's about as long as the basilisk that lives in the eponymous chamber.*
One hundred and sixty-one minutes, people. So long that I had to do this in stages. I walked for an hour and a half before dinner, and another hour afterwards.
If I ever encounter a basilisk (and this is not as unlikely as you might think--you haven't seen my basement) I won't panic, and I won't wait for a phoenix to show up to help me. I'll just crush it with my mighty calf muscles.
* "Eponymous" = my graduate school dollars at work.