Monday, August 14, 2000

Trying to Be Like Charles Atlas

What makes a guy line up five hours before a Twins game on an August Sunday morning in the year 2000? Kirby Puckett Bobblehead Day that's what. I was never that big a Kirby fan when he was our star player (I liked our other rotund player from that era, Mr. Hrbek, better). But having fought my way for the first three bobbleheads this year (and prominently featuring them in my living room I might add) I had no choice but try and get the most sought after doll- Mr. Puckett to complete my collection.

It's not as though I don't appreciate Kirby's contribution to the Twins' history. I liked the way Kirby played the game with so much enthusiasm, competitive spirit, and fun. I liked how well he played the game with his unusually shaped rotund body. I always vowed that I would one day mold myself into the same shape. Now after a winter of inactivity and a summer of the same I find myself tipping the scales heavier than ever before. And the extra weight indeed seems to be settling in the same area that Kirby expanded in. My pants seem awfully tight these days.

Lo and behold after watching my heroes on Survivor wither away to skin and bones (with the noticeable exception of the naked Richard) I decided it time to get off my arse and get myself back to myself. So after a week of Nordic Tracking and eating much less, I lost five pounds. Call it the Dave diet. If I can keep this up for another 27 weeks I'll thankfully be completely gone.

To celebrate this loss I went out on Saturday night and purchased a CD burner (which I couldn't really afford on my airtight budget). But in my efforts to be more of an American I've learned the wonders of having a credit card. Besides I figured it would be my little treat for the summer. We all gotta treat ourselves sometimes right? So I spent the evening making CDs. Dylan CDs. Compilation CDs. Party CDs.

The next day still feeling more than a little guilty over my extravagant purchase I came home after finishing up another solid issue of the newsletter and pulled my car up to my garage. As I was opening the door the roller on the right side popped out of its track- a recurring problem. Try as I might, I couldn't get the door back on track. I spent the next half an hour pounding away at the roller and the track using my old softball bat with enough volume and force to give the dog next door a most curious (not quite frightened, too startled to be concerned) look on his face.

Alas, I pounded too hard and the roller flew off. Now I was left holding the door above my head. As I tried to maneuver it in a way to be stable enough where I could reach down and pick up the roller, the roller on the other side popped out of its track. Now the only thing holding that door afloat were two springs and my Olive Oil like arms. The wooden door only felt like it weighed five hundred pounds.

I figured if I let go I'd be squashed like the bug I've become. I figured if I tossed it forward it would fly loose of the springs and the glass windows would shatter everywhere. Quickly weakening I did a combination of both. I flipped it up and behind me. The springs held and only one pane of glass shattered. The door bounced into an upside down, inside out position leaving me just enough room to get out of the garage, or just enough room for thieves to come along and take my lawn mower at their leisure.

I looked down past my grease covered hands to my chest covered with a T-shirt of a cartoon cat slowly sliding down the middle of my shirt with its claw marks left behind. I noticed a small blood stain amongst my sweat. I pulled my shirt up and looked for a cut. There was no break in my skin anywhere in sight. It reminded me of my least favorite movie of all time, "The Natural," where the hero suffering with a bleeding ulcer steps up to the plate and knocks one into the lights. I used to think it quite an affront that we were to believe that his ulcer was so bad that it was actually bleeding through his clothing. Now I know better.

The cost of repairing all this damage made the decision to splurge on the CD burner seem even more unwise. And not even the bobbin head to the flow of music nor the taste of the first tomato from my garden this summer could take that away.

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