Sep 21, 2006

Growing Up

As a kid, I was always too tall. Too tall for my age, but certainly not too heavy. I was a beanpole, and I was really self-conscious about it. I was generally taller than any kid in my class all through primary and middle school, sometimes even a full head taller than average. Not just tall and skinny, but gawky and uncoordinated as well. I remember hiding during recess, because ball tag was the sport, and I was always "it". Picture roving gangs of males, seeking easy prey. I found refuge in the library and I spent as much time as I could there, escaping into the books. I guess that explains why I read at college level in 6th grade.

When I was a teenager, I did a little baby-sitting for neighbors (being the responsible nerd who was rarely out getting into trouble with the other teenage boys on Saturday nights), and I sat for a family who’s dad was the high school gym teacher. He was a stud in my eyes - short and muscular, but mostly what I remember about it was that he had a bench and some weights in the basement. God, he had his own workout room! He also had a small stack of weight lifting magazines down there, and when it was late, after I put the kids to bed, I would go downstairs and look at those magazines and the weights and stuff. It made me hard.

I was one of those skinny teenagers who actually sent away for the muscle building courses advertised in the back of Popular Mechanics. The 1972 Joe Weider catalog (mercifully mailed in a plain brown rapper) was the stuff of my fantasies. Frank Zane, Dave Draper, Larry Scott, I knew every sweep and bulge of their amazing physiques! I dreamed of having my own weight set, of being a real man! Not only were these guys so hot and muscular to me, they didn’t mind showing it off - they’d pose for the cameras and admiring fans, wearing nothing but little bikini briefs. I could barely change in a locker room without wishing I could hide behind the lockers! That little catalogue was responsible for gallons of my teen spunk shooting into the sheets. What did my mom think on wash day, week after week? Forget it, I don’t want to know.

Fortunately in high school my growth spurt slowed down and the other boys caught up. I even managed to fill out a bit and by college, I was 6' and 165 lb. - a pretty average frat boy. Even so, those early years instilled in me an admiration for thick, powerful, muscular guys that I’ve never outgrown.

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