I think you have to be over 40 to know why this joke is so bad, yet, so funny. My brother used to be fond of it:
You: I just saw “Bridge over River Kwee”
Straight man: “you mean, Kwai.”
You: Like a baby.
So, this morning I’m flipping around cable (satellite, actually) and I find this movie about a 50yr old Scottish shipyard worker who gets laid off and decides to start a training regimen that would ultimately allow him to swim the English Channel. I tried to watch it, but I gotta say, making swimming exciting to watch ain’t easy. Anyway, it got me to thinking about why I’m trying to get back in shape. Turning 50 obviously contributed to motivating me, but perhaps the mere act of surviving a half-century wasn’t enough. I’ve been thinking quite a bit about the things that have brought me the most joy in my life, (apart from the obvious relationships with family and friends) and realized that it has almost always been competitive sports. I don’t remember making a conscious decision to quit, but quit I did. Most of my life I could wander onto any court and work my way into a pick-up game of hoops. I’m not particularly tall, (despite what you read in the “About Me” section) but I worked hard at the game. I learned to position myself well, and, as a result, grabbed my share off the boards. I loved assists even more than scoring. I learned to pass from every position, and if you neglected to guard me at the twelve foot mark, I usually made you pay. I especially loved to “bang”, that is, the jostling that takes place underneath was close to full contact. There is something as well to meeting complete strangers, and quickly developing a pace and rhythm together that requires no communication. Suffice to say, I want to play competitive basketball again. This is why I allowed myself to be prodded by the family to join their collective exercise venture. I now have a goal.
I’m averaging 40 minutes a day on the treadmill, I guess I’ll have to get around to working the thighs next. If I can avoid shin splints, I will nearly double my daily average in no time. Then come the wind sprints, which I actually kind of liked when I was younger, but I’m sure I’ll be regretting the money I gave to the R.J. Reynolds company.
Eventually, I’ll do 100 free throws a day. I’ll miss a few. God I hope there is a 50 and over league somewhere, though I’d settle for 40 and over. If not, I’ll run with the young pups, for as long as I can.