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Old 12-28-07, 07:43 AM   #1
BSLeVan
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My father continues to amaze me...

I'm closer to 60 than fifty, but find that I continue to be amazed by my father. I visted him and my mother over the holidays and was bragging a wee bit about the number of miles I've ridden this year. Not sure why I was doing that, but I suspect his strict military style in raising his three sons had something to do with it. In any event, after talking about my riding, I asked how he had spent the rest of his recent birthday, now that he's 80+ years old. He said he pretty much treated the day like any other. My mother, however, chimed in and said, "He spent the day hauling wheelbarrow after wheelbarrow of gravel down the lane." Turns out he was adding gravel to his driveway a wheelbarrow full at a time. He had to walk each load over 100 yards to place it. As I looked at his driveway I was stunned at the sheer amount of physical work this must have involved. So, I said, "Wow, Dad. That's a lot of work. How many weeks did it take you to do this?" He glared at me and said, "Weeks my *$#% (arse). It took three days. It was only a bit over 90 loads." My mother nodded her head in agreement. Somehow my mileage this year seems a bit less impresive. The man had spinal surgery less than 8 months ago!
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Old 12-28-07, 08:08 AM   #2
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Wow...that's fantastic!

Was the wheelbarrow made of carbon, by any chance?

Seriously, that's cool.
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Old 12-28-07, 08:24 AM   #3
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Very cool story; thanks for sharing.

Makes me realize that all is not lost going into my later years. I don't need to haul wheelbarrows. I just want to ride!
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Old 12-28-07, 08:37 AM   #4
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Can you put 90# of gravel on a B.O.B.?
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Old 12-28-07, 10:28 AM   #5
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Sounds like the best way to get your dad to do something is tell him he can't do it.

I've done that pick and shovel kind of work and what he did is on the sunny side of impressive.

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Can you put 90# of gravel on a B.O.B.?
Well, if I can get 140# of groceries in a BoB a bit of gravel should be doable.

And yes, I know the trailer is rated for only 70# but I rarely feel like making two trips to the store.
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Old 12-28-07, 11:02 AM   #6
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That is very impressive. It's amazing what we can do when we set our mind to it.

A tree trimmer came to give us an estimate a few years ago. I asked him about a particular tree for our side yard, a Chinese Pistache which has gorgeous fall color. He warned us about the leaf drop in fall and asked "Will you be able to rake leaves when you're 70?" I was aghast! In a shocked tone, I said "I sure hope so!!!", and he looked puzzled by my response. My parents were 70+/80+ at that time and I couldn't imagine them not being able to rake leaves. Our 95-year-old neighbor still takes care of his own lawn and garden and trims his own trees.
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Old 12-28-07, 12:37 PM   #7
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Outstanding!
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Old 12-28-07, 12:54 PM   #8
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My father was state swimming champion of New Jersey, was one of many Pvt. Ryan's at Normandy then France/Belgium/Germany, loved my mother for more than 50 years, played catch in the street with me for much of my life, and left me with many sweet, personal memories.

The fact that I'll never equal him is somehow OK with me...and yet an inspiration to always try a bit harder. Maybe that's the way it ought to be for some of us.

Last edited by CrossChain; 12-28-07 at 01:00 PM.
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Old 12-28-07, 01:30 PM   #9
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The fact that I'll never equal him is somehow OK with me...
Not true. Think of how many young minds you've helped to mold.

Is there anything more important?
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Old 12-28-07, 03:34 PM   #10
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My father was state swimming champion of New Jersey, was one of many Pvt. Ryan's at Normandy then France/Belgium/Germany, loved my mother for more than 50 years, played catch in the street with me for much of my life, and left me with many sweet, personal memories.

The fact that I'll never equal him is somehow OK with me...and yet an inspiration to always try a bit harder. Maybe that's the way it ought to be for some of us.

+1
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Old 12-28-07, 04:47 PM   #11
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I'm physically 2 inches in height over my dad (now deceased), but I'll NEVER be taller he was!
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Old 12-28-07, 07:07 PM   #12
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Is your father's name Jack LaLanne by any chance?
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Old 12-28-07, 07:22 PM   #13
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Would he like to vacation in Colorado? I have some yard hauling that needs doing.
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Old 12-29-07, 12:52 AM   #14
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I had a summer construction job in a quarry many years ago and on my first day the foreman drove me down into the hole and dropped me in front of a huge pile of boulders. These were large boulders that mostly didn't even fit onto a shovel. He told me to move the whole pile (maybe 8 cubic yards) 15 feet, ..out to where a loader could scoop it up. My first assesment was that this was not even remotely humanly possible. But he drove away and left me there with just a long handle shovel. I stood there for an hour trying to figure out how I was going to explain to him that it was not possible. Then I started to move them. I kept thinking it was a joke, or some initiation, but I kept moving them one at a time. By the end of the week (10 hrs for 6 days) every boulder had been moved and scooped. Whenever I have a long task ahead of me I think about that pile of boulders. Once you have that mindset, anything is possible.
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Old 12-29-07, 09:26 AM   #15
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Great story BSL! I'm sure you're glad to have some of his genes!
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Old 12-29-07, 09:28 AM   #16
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Is your father's name Jack LaLanne by any chance?
Naw, He thinks Jack is a sissy boy.... probably because of the jump suits. And, no, we don't talk about the Lycra/spandex cycling clothes.
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Old 12-29-07, 10:45 AM   #17
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That's impressive. Way to go, Dad.
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