I headed up the stairs to "ironland" this morning...It was bench press day...As I passed rows of contraptions designed for pain, I saw a strange dude hanging from a barbell on the Smith machine...He had a raggedy stocking cap on his head, nerdlike glasses held together by tape...He was dangling like a bat, shuffling his feet, and showing a set of rock hard abs,, that took my breath away...i watched him as he was flexing and smiling...
When he dismounted, I asked him, "How old are you?"...I placed him at around 50, but he countered with, "I am sixty-eight". My mouth opened, and I was slack-jawed...I said, "Dude, you are in some awesome kind of shape." He told me of his inversion exercises, his commitment to nutrition and Zen, and his martial arts master who lived to be 120 years old.
We shook hands, and as he departed I thought of my prior antipathy toward him. I was ready to hate him, to run him off, to be derogatory. I am a fool. I learn something every day in the palace of iron. The most important thing to learn is brotherhood and sisterhood, compassion, humility, and the willingness to give a helping hand and share knowledge.
Ain't life the most beautiful thing?