Category Archives: gym

Elegy on a Gym Class

Gym teachers hated me.

I was a tall, slender kid that at first glance gym teachers assumed would have some athletic ability. At every turn, I would sorely disappoint each and every one of them.

On the basketball court, I got knocked down by the opposing team. Sometime my glasses flew across the floor. No penalty. This kid counts for nothing. No faith, no foul.

Later during a free throw test, long after the series of basketball games were over, I managed to get every free throw in the basket. Where was I during all those games she said? Getting knocked around by all the other real players.

The 50 meter dash during sixth grade. I had a strategy. At this point I had already spent a few years reading Greek and Roman mythology from books I checked out from the library. Since I was odd and impressionable, I was not just going to run, I was going to fly like the gods in those stories. Unfortunately the time I spent trying to fly between my running steps, cost me too much time. I came in dead last. The teacher said he thought a kid like me should have been much quicker. Yea, if only that kid would have concentrated on running and not flying.

High school swim class – diving. The teacher explained the proper diving technique. I processed that info and followed every step resulting in a perfect dive. This was the first time that I ever attempted to dive off a diving board. She was stunned at my ability and she made me dive again. This time it was an arm-flinging, belly-flopping mess. So the teacher and I gave up on me on the spot. I never had a chance at getting a perfect dive again.

I lived the zero incentive program. All belief in me was zero. But aren’t I too old to still keep whining over all my lost chances?

Besides, I’ve got to get going or I’ll be late for my interval training class. By my seventh decade, I should be able to kick some butt on the competitive circuit. Retribution at last.