Saturday, March 5, 2016

This reminds me of hurdles

I threw shot and discus in track. Minimal running, spend half the time in the weight room and the other half working on technique. Basically, screwing off for the period. I'm not fast, I'm not graceful, and God knows, if you ever see me running, you'd better get it in gear because there's some bad shit coming after me.

But on the way to the pits, I'd pass the hurdlers. Small, long-legged, sleek race cars. Human gazelles who made it look so effortless. Just run, run, run, jump, run, run, run, jump. Simple, right? So you can probably see where this is going. The pits were at the far end of the field and by the time practice was over, we'd be the last ones out. Jogging (more like moseying) past the hurdles, a couple of us got the bright idea to give it a go. I mean, it didn't look that hard and we were athletes, too, right? Amber and I started loping towards the first hurdle, slowly picking up speed, and just at the first jump with visions of grace and agility playing in my head, Amber tried to stop short, but momentum carried her into the hurdle where she folded over it in a headfirst dive into the cinders. I led with my left foot, just like I'd seen the others do, realizing in mid air that I was going to be short by two inches. My foot hit the hurdle, knocking it over but trapping my foot. The rest of my 5'8, 135 pound body continued to wrap around the frame as we tumbled down the cinder track for a good 10 feet. Laying there in a bruised and bleeding crumpled heap, I heard roars of laughter and looked over to see the coaches rolling in the stands. "Chumbley! That was the funniest damn thing I've seen all season! I should make you run laps for stupidity, but you've punished yourself enough. Hit the showers!"

That tumble down the track was a lesson in limits and humility. I'm not a hurdler. I will never be a hurdler. But I still hold the district and region records in shot put, so I've got that going for me.


14 comments:

Lisa Lane said...

Reminds me of the time...no nevermind...can't make that public....lmao!

Anonymous said...

Hilarious
Just hilarious

Terry
Fla.

Dick said...

Funny story and the cow on the fence is a keeper!

fjord said...

Good gate.

Loading cattle the other day, we had 2 do the same, but they accordioned the gates.
Nothing is made to last anymore.

Charlie Mitchell said...

Hey, good deal on the shotput records.

Anonymous said...

Um, yep, that's how I 'do' hurdles.............;-(
Lots easier for me to just go around, no matter how far it might be!

RabidAlien said...

By the time I got on the track team, I knew I couldn't jump. And I was the skinny, glasses-wearing geek with no upper-body strength, so any arm-related events were out. I was a distance runner, so they put me on....pole vault. Yup. I thought I was doing pretty good the first time I ran down the chute and made it over the 6' pole. Visions of Olympic glory were playing in my head when they bumped it up to 7'....first try, I planted my pole, got myself vertical (upside-down, of course), and then watched as the forward momentum and springyness of the pole both laughed at my aformentioned skinny-glasses-wearing-geekiness. Progress stopped, I hung suspended for a second as the VCR in my head started eating the Olympic tape it was playing, and then even gravity got in on the grand cosmic joke. I went back away from the pole (and the accompanying soft landing mat), upside down, onto the chute. Not the fancy recycled-rubber or even cinder stuff, either. We had concrete. In South Georgia. During mid-Spring. It was hard, and it was hot. And I went to the mile and two-mile runs after that. Those, at least, I could finish without getting lapped or body-slammed by the universe.

Granny said...

Ditto congrats on the stuff you do well. We all stray into fantasy land from time to time; the trick is to live long enough to learn the lesson.

Anonymous said...

as a former wanna be discus thrower and shot putter I am absolutely in awe of your records!!! I also "ran at" the 100 and 220, but my nephew (sis's kid) medaled at state in the 300 hurdles.... I always admire you ath-a-leets,and yes, I understand the fascination with the "other guy's event"

vaquero viejo

PS: had a stud horse (after a mare, of course) get over a panel like that cow...was a sumbitch to get him off of it....

pigpen51 said...

I also did okay in shotput and discus. I also played baseball at the same time. Then my senior year, they decided that it was too much, and made us pick one, so I just played baseball.
I also hated running, but I did run the 100 yard dash. I tried the 220 yard dash one time, but when I got about two thirds of the way through I thought I would die, so I never tried that again.
We had high and low hurdles, and I could clear the low ones, but I never tried them in an actual race in a meet. I tried the high hurdles one time and had nearly the exact same results Angel did. I am not pretty, and the cuts and bruises made it even worse.
I liked running the 100 yard dash, as I played football and that is the farthest I would have to run in a game. I was not the fastest on the team, I was the fastest in the second bunch of us. You know, like there is a group of fast guys, and then the rest of us.

Anonymous said...

LOL, pigpen, I played tackle and could outrun all our backfield(which explains why our football team was in trouble)...I ran the 100 and the 220 cause "I could hold my breath that far" and the guys on the other football teams said I was "the fastest tackle in district 21-A....

vaquero viejo

pigpen51 said...

I actually had a couple of offers to play college football, with scholarships and everything, but oh no, I went and fell in love, and the rest is history. I also batted .400 my senior year of high school in baseball, but again, water under the bridge.
I was not big enough to play big time college football, but it would have been fun to see how I would have made out at the next level. But that is a bad reason to go to college. I am happy with where my life has taken me, even if the road has been a little bumpy. I have met such amazing people, like Angel and Wirecutter, and probably would have ended up being a liberal if I went to the colleges that offered me the free rides.

JeremyR said...

Once cows figure out they can jump, its game over. They get the notion they are deer and no alfalfa field is safe. Neighbors had a Holstein bull that could clear a seven foot fence from a standing start. We had lots of Holstein Guernsey cross calves. Neighbor decided he wanted stud fees, and dad decided he wanted paid for the food.
Eventually he sold the dang thing. Claimed I shot it in the balls and it had to be castrated. I'm not guilty, but looking back, It would not surprise me if dad hadn't done it. He was more fed up with that bull than I was. Dad was also a natural with a rifle. He caught the neighbors dogs chasing our calves. Three shots, three dead dogs. Closest one was 100 yds running left to right. He nailed it as it made the jump for the fence.

Robert Fowler said...

The only sports I participated in is SCUBA diving, fishing and hunting. I also do not watch sports on TV, except the occasional NASCAR race.