Did you ever…?
Did you ever think about aging? I really never did until last week when I discovered that I got out of breath whilst chewing gum. How could I possibly be so out of shape?
A visit to the doctor’s office for a complete physical check-up was out of the question because the last time I was there, he told me that the warranty on all my parts had expired. I promised myself that I would never go back to a doctor who was so young that he still had braces on his teeth and smelled of Clearasil. How could he possibly understand?
My neighbour, Bing, worked out a few times a week at the local gym, and was in pretty good physical shape. I asked him if I could go with him the next time he went for his workout. He reluctantly agreed, but only if I promised not to stand anywhere near him because he hadn’t paid this month’s hospitalization premium yet.
When we walked into the gym, I immediately noticed that not one person there was a minute over twenty years old and all had bodies like Mr. Universe. What chance did I have? Our trainer approached and asked what kind of exercise program I wanted.
“What do I have to do to look like them?” I answered.
He looked at me for a while, shook his head and said, “Rub a lamp and make a wish.”
We started with some bending and stretching exercises. I found out that I could bend, but I couldn’t get back up and when I stretched, my bones refused to catch up with my skin. I could do the high kicks, but my leg wouldn’t come back down. The trainer didn’t have much patience with me. He said we would do something easy, like some walking exercises. He put me on the treadmill, set it for normal walking speed and turned it on. When I regained consciousness, one of the attendants was trying to take my blood pressure but said he couldn’t get a reading. I told him that my arteries were tired and didn’t want to cooperate. He said, “I’m glad to hear that! We thought you were dead.” “What gave me away?” I asked. He walked away without answering me.
As Bing and I limped out of the gym, (I was limping from exhaustion and pain, and Bing was limping because I dropped a barbell on his foot), I overheard the trainer ordering Bing never to bring me back again or they would cancel his membership.
Later that day, I called my sister and told her about everything that had happened.
She said that usually as a person gets older, the mind is the first thing to go, but fortunately, I didn’t have to worry about that anymore. I told her there was nothing wrong with my memory. She said: “Really? Then why can’t you remember my maiden name?” She suggested a memory course at the local college. “I already took one of those.” I said. “You did? she asked; “Which one?” When I told her I forgot, she hung up on me. Now, neither my sister nor Bing is speaking to me.
Who knows? Maybe someday they will perfect complete body transplants and I can have my head on the body of Mr. Universe. However, I am sure that I will have to give it back if I start to wrinkle it.
“Did you ever…?” is a weekly newspaper column by Melech
©copyright 2009 by Melech. All rights reserved.
The next column will be posted on September 19, 2009