I don’t remember the last time my shoulder and arms felt this sore. Probably not since that disastrous attempt at shotput in School many eons ago. Funny how the physical education directors of the day thought about life on the Athletic field. Of hurling shotputs and javelins, they let us experiment. There was one time when I went up to the shotput arena in awe. I’d seen folks with biceps the size of my thighs (then of course) go and make light work of it. The confidence a teenager can muster up is simply amazing. I walked up and stooped to pick the thing and remember the deadweight pulling me down so I was stuck in a sort of limbo between hands being pulled by the shotput to dear Earth again while my feet were plucked reluctantly away from the shores of the Earth. I managed with all my will power to lift the thing. I still don’t know what I expected to do with it; given it was taking all willpower just to stand upright holding the shotput in my hand. But, being a keen observer I knew that snorting works better than power in cases like this, especially on the sports field. When in doubt, snort and grunt is the motto. I gathered up steam from the very bowels and snorted like never before, lifted the shotput to my shoulder height and heaved. Elephants uprooting trees don’t concentrate as much, I am sure. I felt the shotput leave my hands and held myself back firmly on the ground – I refused to fly with the shotput and become the laughing stock of the town.
Two things stuck with me as a memory from this disastrous foray into shotputting.
1) My hands felt like they’d been replaced with lead by a slow process that involved melting, searing and some more groaning.
2) While I scanned the horizon to see how far I’d thrown it, my soaring spirits were brought right back down to Earth when my friend showed me the shotput nestling snuggly near my foot.
There is something about aging that I hate to admit. The same lead like pain in the hands was what I got for a lot less than a shotput now. This time, it was the pumpkins. My maiden attempt at pumpkin carving yielded the same result. I had no idea the pumpkins were such hard-to-work blighters. Or I may have gone completely awry in the skill department. Maybe, I should have used a carving knife suitable for 12 year olds instead of 5 year olds. I suppose I thought the daughter would help to carve. Nevertheless, a friend and I managed a bunch of pumpkins (for the daughter and her friends) for Halloween this time.
They would not win any pumpkin heaving races, but it is my maiden attempt and I shall hold it up for the World to see just as soon as I can lift those hands.
Happy Halloween! The supermen and mermaids will be here soon.