ten event tim

today’s post comes from tim

i was out walking the other day with the dogs and remembered that the spot where i was walking is the spot where as a 14 year old steve gross and i ran full speed in a moment of youthful exhunerance to celebrate life and the moment at hand. steve was a great track star and was the anchor leg on the 440 relay. on this particular day i beat him because i had the gods of physical nature allowing me to open it up to my full potential . i was a baseball guy and track always looked like a lot of work the people in track enjoyed it but it still looked like a lot of work. baseball was skill stuff with a theme and i loved baseball. i realized that in track i could do some things well but never the best in the world. there were faster guys, stronger guys, guys who would always be better than me at a particular event but what dawns on me the other morning is that i am a decathlete. jim thorpe in the 30’s , bob richards in the 60s bruce jenner in the 70’s all did it and i loved them for it. the decathalon is a series of events that add up to the best all around athelete possible. i was recalling the great feeling of being able to run so well on that day. i knw was quick but didnt realize i could run fast enough to beat steve ever…

The decathlon is a two-day miniature track meet designed to ascertain the sport’s best all-around athlete. Within its competitive rules, each athlete must sprint for 100 meters, long jump, heave a 16-pound shotput, high jump and run 400 meters — all in that very order — on the first day. On the second day the athlete runs a 110 meter hurdle race over 42 inch barriers, hurls the discus, pole vaults, tosses a javelin and, at the end of the contest, races over 1500 meters, virtually a mile.

my aha moment while out walking the dogs was that i am not a sprinter or a distance runner or a discus thrower or a high jumper but i am better than ok at all those things and when factored into the equation in the big picture i was a great combination of all the above guy. so it is with life. i am not the best at anything but i am pretty good at a bunch of different things. i have been asked why i dont focus on one area and become an expert at it and i always reply that i just cant to it. i need to check out all the options. i know a lot about a little and a little about a lot. i hope to be able to make that work for me in the overall big picture of life.

when i was young it had to do with math equations, bike riding and being able to hit a baseball, as i grew older it switched to being able to perform expected tasks for the people i worked with and trying to find a way to better myself in areas that interested me for enjoyment and goalsetting.
as i settle into my pattern i hope i have a program set up where i can maintain the required bobbing and weaving and find a way to make the world a better place along the way for myself and others.

if i can stay one step ahead of the devil and find a little joy along the way it will be a good race.my decathalon has less to do with atheleticn prowess and more to do with making other aspects of life work.

what are your goals for 2016?

61 thoughts on “ten event tim”

  1. Hi-
    I remember doing a lot of research on Jim Thorpe way back when; he had a pretty interesting story from his childhood and getting to the Olympics.
    I was never an athlete; I always wanted to pole vault but wasn’t any good at it. I guess looking back I appreciate elementary school track meets giving us the opportunity to try so many things. Do they still do that? Do kids still get to try all the events?

    2016– I hope for no major crisis’ for us or this tribe.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. My dad told me a fascinating story about Jim Thorpe, the decathlon master who was considered the premier athlete of his generation. Someone apparently set up a challenge in which Thorpe would mirror every physical move of an infant. If the kid squatted to grab a block, Thorpe would, too. According to the story, Thorpe called off the challenge when he was too exhausted to go on copying all the things the infant (toddler?) did. This theoretically shows that tiny humans do an incredible amount of physical work (not to mention all the stuff happening mentally).

      I just checked this story out on Snopes. It isn’t known to be false, but neither was there confirmation it happened.


      1. i have heard that one too. i think it just shows that whie we are infinants we are too new to know thats too much. as we grow we decde what the enough factor is.


  2. Like Tim, I’ve always considered myself good at many things, but not great at anything. I’d be a perfect citizen if I were a kid in Lake Wobegon. ” … and the children are all above average.”

    Only have two big goals in 2016. One is to make a successful transition to my wife now being retired. After only a few weeks, it’s going okay, but might be a bigger adjustment for her than me.

    Second goal is to self-publish my novel. Hopefully that happens in the next few months. I’ve just about finalized the manuscript, just needs proofreading and then send it to the good folks at BookLocker.com, who I hope will be as good as their reputation.

    New and scary and exciting, but hey, might as well give it a shot, right? Happy New Year, Babooners.

    Chris in Owatonna

    Liked by 4 people

    1. A lifelong dream of mine has been to publish a book. I’ve been told so many times, “You should write a book”. I love writing and I’m decent at it. I also have “the book” sitting here – all 400-pages of my journey through cancer. What stops me in my tracks is how to go about getting it published. It doesn’t help to hear that only one in a thousand ever winds up being published either. Proofreading, editing, and marketing are foreign concepts to me. I’ve been told that it’s very expensive just getting a book to the point of finding a publisher or self-publishing.


        1. It strikes me now, my comments don’t look like the continuous thought that was in my head…

          ‘Exciting and Scared’ goes with so many many things in life…


  3. I have who has offers from smaller publisher to publish poetry collection
    loose moose publishing out of Prescott az offered to publish it and push it if she paid the publishing costs. she passed. you might look into it


  4. I’m not fast and wouldn’t be a candidate for competing in a decathlon. I had a little skill at jumping and was able to be somewhat competitive as a distance runner. Training for distance running is a lot of work and not a good event to compete at if you are also a high jumper so I dropped the mile and concentrated on high jumping. I wasn’t one of the better high jumpers. I was good enough to be selected to compete on my school’s track team.

    I am always looking for something that I can do that I find satisfying. I am a little like you , tim, because I have a wide range of interests and some skill at doing a fairly large number of things. However, I am not good at working on a lot of things at the same time. Also, I’m not good at planning. I think my goal for this year might be to improve on doing planning so that I can complete or make good progress on getting the things done that are most satisfying for me and helpful to others.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I am impressed with you tim for understanding so well what you do well and what will always be difficult for you.

    As for myself, life now is confusing in a way young people will never understand. I am at an age when time keeps robbing me of abilities I used to take for granted. (Example: my most impressive ability used to be walking; I now can barely walk at all.) Perhaps the biggest challenge in life for me now is deciding which of my losses I should accept gracefully as part of an inevitable new reality and which I should struggle against so I can salvage as much of my old self as possible.


      1. I would have to be coming up to Mpls sometimes – would try and coordinate those trips with Friday nights at Tapestry, and BBC. It might be really fine to have BBC some time in Winona, though, but I realize that’s a stretch. Maybe an organized train trip…

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Train trip sounds fun, but I think the train leaves St. Paul at 7am on its way to Winona and comes back at 11pm. Yawn. And it’s been known to be 8 hours late.


  6. Greetings! I have the usual resolutions — lose weight, keep my house somewhat clean, find a way to generate more income, nurture better relationships in my life, etc. Hoping to find a method to actually make them work. Fitness Pal to track my food intake, Marie Kondo’s book “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up” and a few other tools to keep me on track. Now I just motivation and energy!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. My goals-get through one more year of work, which will put me 4 years away from retirement. (We use the Rule of 85 in the ND State system), continue to be pain free in my lower back (I notice now when I am tensing my muscles there) and have a good family trip to Europe in May. That means that I have to manage my anxiety so I don’t drive my family nuts with my need for control.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Fun post, tim, and as usual, a breath of fresh air. Love your perspective and your seemingly effortless ability to go with the flow.

    Having lunch today with a couple of old friends I haven’t seen much in recent years. Only recently discovered that they know each other. That’s one of my intentions – not sure I would call it a resolution – for this coming year, spend more spending time with people I care about. During 2015 six people dear to me passed away, some of them after long illnesses, two very suddenly. Made me very mindful that time is fleeting. Better make hay while the sun shines.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Jack of all trades, master of none – isn’t that what we used to say. I would describe myself like this as well. Good at a lot of things but not over the top…

    I don’t really do resolutions, but I would really like to survive the election year without having my blood pressure blow my head off!

    Liked by 2 people

  10. My intentions for 2016 are pretty modest: relearn the piano. At one time long ago, I had Rhapsody in Blue down and could play anything classical well. I have a beautiful ivory-colored baby grand which faces the lake and grand kids always asking to hear one or two of their favorite pieces, but I’ve neglected playing for so long that it’s almost like learning from scratch at this point. Playing well is all about doing endless repetitions until your fingers are kinesthetically conditioned.

    Another intention is to get physically stronger and gain a little weight. Living on the edges of malnutrition results in being physically weak but breaking this cycle will be a huge challenge for me.

    Yet another intention is to overcome my acquired fear of driving on freeways so that my range of outings can expand to include distances more than a few miles from the cottage. I’m learning that fears at this stage of life tend to pile onto one another and isolate me. Once I’d mapped out backroads to every place I have to go, I’ve become hostage to this particular phobia.


  11. I don’t really set goals. When I was in my cube years, I was always supposed to set goals as part of my annual performance review. Always disliked it. I had a job that was more task-oriented than goal-oriented, and any time I set a goal of doing something outside the usual tasks, it didn’t get done and got repeatedly pushed into the following year. So my goal now is just to try to keep up with the usual tasks. And deal with whatever life throws at me. If I get any projects completed, it will be a pleasant surprise.

    Liked by 3 people

  12. I have just opened a journal that I write in periodically, when I have some alone time. It reminds me that I want to find a time each day to just sit and be thoughtful, or meditate (which in some cases is an attempt at being thought-less). This has been a goal of mine for MANY years – why should this year be any different?


  13. Guess Who Over Slept and Did Not Rise and Shine!

    No New Years type goals for me, but I do have goals I don’t connect to New Years.

    Like Renee–less responsibility!
    Don’t work so much.
    I am always trying to manage my weight and increase exercise, but first the plantar fasciitis has to heal–ugh

    And then there are those two blogs I committed to writing this month!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Too busy yesterday to comment, so I’ll pile on today. My goal for 2016 is simple: to recover from 2015. Last year one of the cats had to be put to sleep; a friend died suddenly, alone in her apartment; I broke a toe, thus incurring a $2,000 medical bill; a different friend fell off a step and tore up her Achilles tendon, requiring surgery; our relatively-new printer futzed out; and my computer decided to stop booting up. I still have 7 months of payments on the medical bill, the friend has finished PT but still isn’t 100% and will need assistance in the garden next year, and I can’t afford to repair/replace the electronics until the bill is paid off AND the renter’s rebate comes in. So, yeah, it’ll take a while to get back to equilibrium.


  15. Tim, your experience reminded me of a track meet. There had been bad weather all around an invitational site, so many teams cancelled. I ran my usual 880, anchored the half mile of the mile medley, anchored the quarter mile in the mile relay and since there were onl


    1. To continue. Since there were only four entries in the 220, my coach put me in. We got the one point. I was dead last by at least 30 yards. Humiliations galore.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I was barely good enough to make the track team at my high school as a high jumper. I usually didn’t win any points for my team at track meets. There was one meet where I did manage to help my team by scoring a fraction of a point.

        At the league meet, where all the teams in our league participated, the approach to the high jump was slippery due to rain. I managed to keep my balance on the approach and cleared the bar at about 5 ft. 8 inches which would usually not be high enough to earn any points. Other better jumpers had trouble with the approach and I ended up earring 1/6 of a point in a tie with 5 other jumpers. Later, I learned that our team finished one place higher than another team by the 1/6th point that I earned.

        Liked by 4 people

  16. Like others here, I have the usual- fitness, housekeeping, do better all around, but I guess the two big ones for me particular to this year are make friends with the new neighbors (whenever they actually move in) and get the s&h on his way to college (applications all filed and financial aid stuff filled out- I really don’t want to wait until 2017 to do that stuff, too stressful).

    tangential to the second one is to start rebuilding my life as a single adult.

    I realized on the s&h’s birthday, when he was off at the movie and then a gamenight with friends that I am soon going to be really, really on my own again.

    I may someday get to the BBC….

    Liked by 2 people

  17. Oh dear! I guy from our town was just arrested in Washington for planning to kidnap the President’s dogs. He sounds pretty disturbed.


      1. kidknapping the presidents dogs. thats a riot. i cant believe it wasnt all over the fornt of each and every news story. we get a whacko claiming allegiance to allah why not a gut pledging allegiance to purina


        1. the guy like multiple choice. shot gun and machete, 350 rounds of shotgun ammo would be a large heavy stockpile. ike the size of a school backpack filled to the max with 30 lbs of stuff. plus he chooses jesus jfk and marilyn 3 people that top 3 different lists. this guy is a man of many colors. at least he didnt claim to be the child of charles manson madonna and satin weilding a flame thrower a tommyhawk and a propane tank to burn down the whitehouse in a predogknapping plot


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