The Collider Will Be Back

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This’ll be short as I’m up to my bottom in daily operations.

Wednesday, the 13th, at 6 AM my battle-scarred bomber will be (that is, was) rolled into the hangar for repairs on the lower fuselage. The rigging near the tail end of the craft is faulty and needs repair. Two years ago it became apparent the electrical system controlling speed, stability and maneuverability and otherwise smooth flying was compromised. Tough luck; it happens to these old tin buckets.

Two well chosen high-tech mechanics will access the distressed area, properly drill holes to relieve excessive internal pressure, and restore the outer shell. I plan to take ‘er up in a day or two and determine the success of the reconstruction. I’ve been sputtering about for 24 months at low altitudes with barely enough wind beneath my wings to keep me airborne, nevermind soaring. And, as you can imagine, taxiing the perimeter of the runway gets tedious real quick. Bombers are built to fly.

Yeah, I know... Anyone with a brain would have come straight to the point and said he had surgery on his lower back, a decompression procedure, to eliminate blockage in the spine and restore healthy neural pathways. For two years the calves and hamstrings have been largely ineffective. Clomp, clomp, clomp... stand back, people... here comes the Collider.

Now you know why you haven’t seen me on the dance floor lately. No pole vaulting or hurdles at the Olympics this year, either. Rats. I always wanted to hang out in Tiananmen Square. I joke about aluminum walkers, but have looked at them covetously in the past weeks... pretty cool rigs... little built-in seat. I’m good for about 25 yards of hobbling before it’s time to sit or lean, lie down or be propped up with 2x4s.

I undergo (there we go again: underwent) a minimum four-hour operation, including advertising, station breaks and public-service announcements. Next week’s newsletter will contain all the cheery details you can stand, from anesthesia to running and leaping in hospital hallways... look out, nurse.

Or not.

On a more serious note, last week, if you were awake, you might recall I wrote about the local Four Minutes to Fitness Gym. I mocked the concept and imagined a gym of dumbbutts rather than one of dumbbells. Turns out the gym the size of a barber shop contains several pairs of highly priced and highly technical Range of Motion (ROM) machines to exercise and condition the upper body and the lower body.

A robust IronOnliner with curiosity and an extra four minutes dropped in the stop ‘n go fitness parlor and took a free workout. He said he gave the two pieces of snappy equipment -- upper-body and lower-body -- his best shot and crawled out of the place on all fours four minutes later. The management never mentioned the crawling-out part.

Our comrade-in-iron had this to say:

“Do I think this machine provides the best workout in the world? No. Of course not! I haven't done it since and I doubt I'd join a "gym" that uses the machine. Frankly, the workout I did was so hard it intimidated me and made me not want to try again anytime soon. Maybe this was my fault for going at 120% instead of 100%. I suppose the point is to bite off what you can chew, not what you choke on. And I suppose if I had joined such a gym I'd follow the recommendations and be better able to deal with the stress. But what my workout proved to me was that I had experienced a very intense four minutes at each station. It was no joke.”

Sounds more like a device to gain a confession or information vital to national security or to impose cruel and unusual punishment on a very nasty individual. Not a diversion, not a sport, not a hobby, no creativity, no improvising, no expression, no clang of metal.

I immediately commenced to cheer up our flabbergasted subject, passing him a refreshing Bomber Blend and pair of old-fashioned dumbbells. He’s recovering nicely. Here’s a link to learn more about ROM and the direction of the fitness industry while energy is affordable.

Oops. Time flies. Better get back to the hangar in case they need me. Besides, I left an open jug of Bomber Blend in plain sight and don’t want to return to find it devoured by the doctors, nurses and staff. Not that I’m mean and selfish, but how could I carry on... how would I endure and mend... lick my lips and grin with delight?

Don’t let the low clouds keep you from flying high, bombers.

Godspeed... DD

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