Suck On A Salty Pickle

I am doing curls at the gym, got 20 pound dumbbells in either hand and I am doing sets of 7 reps while laddering up to heavier weights.

There is a guy next to me doing 35s, but I notice he has poor form. Instead of relying upon his arms he is swinging his body and using some of the momentum to get the weights up.

He notices me looking at him, smiles and swings his way through a set. Something about that smile makes it clear that he thinks he has me cuz he is using 35s against my 20s.

But he doesn’t know that Crazy Old Wilner has a serious competitive fire and that all I need is an excuse.

I walk to the rack, insert the 20s and substitute them for a pair of 40s. His eyes follow me and I work hard to maintain good form while running through my next set.

After I finish my set I rerack the weights and try not to chuckle when I overhear him mutter “suck on a salty pickle.”

Later he’ll stand next to me in the locker room and ask how long I have been lifting for.

“Ever since I turned 62.”

“Wow, you look great for 62.”

I smile and tell him he looks great for 45.

“I am not 45, I am only 34.”

“My mistake.”

Someone call Dale Carnegie and ask if I am following his instructions on how to win friends and influence people.

Family Follies

Had a couple of moments and conversations the last few days that really made me want to speak with dad because he would be the go-to guy to give me some answers.

Mom can help in some areas but there are a few she isn’t going to know a damn thing about and while that is ok, it is irksome that I have to figure out this crap on my own.

Not that it matters because even if he were here there is no guarantee he could give me the insight I want, but it would be better than nothing.

Anyhoo, he showed up in a dream last night and I woke up with a memory of his hand being similar to the picture above which isn’t how I picture his hands.

If I think about it I almost always see them as twins of mine, no swelling or age spots.

I almost wrote a post about it this morning but went in a very different direction.

****

Hold Out Your Hand

My fingers feel the echo of the bowling ball from last week but don’t seem to carry a hint of the dumbbells from earlier today.

“Hold out your hand.”

Don’t know why I had to say it out loud but I did and I am pleased to say I immediately complied with my own request.

Good to know I listen to someone.

Anyhoo, it is kind of funny to me to not feel any impact from the lifting earlier and yet a week later recognize a faint hint of bowling.

But faint hints seem to catch my attention.

Reminds me of an event I went to not long ago where woman’s perfume stuck in my nose, not because it was bad but because it smelled good.

I knew the name once, think it was something French but can’t say for certain. I just know when I smell it I remember.

Maybe I’ll write a poem or story about it, some fragment of fiction or maybe not.

****

The house must have shifted because the door from the house to the garage didn’t want to open.

The younger Mr. Wilner wrestled with it and then I asked him to step to the side.

“It is time for a professional.”

He smiled and rolled his eyes at me and I said “watch this.”

One very aggressive turn of the knob and shoulder into the door caused it to fly open.

“Would have been kind of cool if I had torn it right off of the hinges and shattered it like I was Thor huh.”

Before he could answer I added a line about it being cooler not to have to pay for a new door and or make any repairs.

“You know there is an art to hanging doors, it is not always as simple as some people think.”

He nodded his head and I told him that I had learned the hard way not to use my strength to force things open or into place.

“Your grandfather used to ride me about learning to have a gentler touch. I wouldn’t mind if he was here to yell at me now.”

“Dad, you know you’d yell back at grandpa.”

“Maybe, maybe not. I am pushing 51, don’t need to be told certain things cuz I damn well know them inside out, even if I don’t always follow them.”

Before we could for any further my work phone rang and I went to go answer it thinking about how dad managed to retire before he turned 60.

That is probably not going to be how it goes for me, might as well suck on a salty pickle.

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