Tuesday, January 27, 2009

John Updike, Planet Confusion. The Bill Snyder Pushup Program

John Updike died today. Funny thing is I was thinking about him last week. Saturday I posted a favorite Updike line. “Dreams come true; without that possibility, nature would not incite us to have them.” Updike is one of my favorite writers. About twenty years ago I went through an Updike phase. One of my favorite J.U. novels would have to be Gertrude and Claudius, a brilliant prequel to Shakespeare’s Hamlet. I’ve probably read thirty of Updike’s books, but more than the rest, I’ve been affected by the Rabbit series - four novels following the life of an average American man whose life never quite measures up to the dreams of his youth. The Rabbit books inspired me to keep after the dreams of my own youth. I keep telling myself I’m going to go back revisit the Rabbit stories. After hearing about Updike’s passing, I scanned my bookshelves and felt a little reassured when I found an old paperback copy of Rabbit is Rich. That’s the thing about leaving a legacy – John Updike’s gone, but then again he’s not really gone at all, is he?

#167 Dad has been up and running for just under a month. The site received its four hundred and fifty-second hit today. The purpose of this blog is to develop an audience and to an extent, I’ve done that. I suppose I’d be OK with all of this if it weren’t for my old standup comedy buddy, Curtis. He started up a website of his own just about a month ago. It’s called Planet Confusion. It’s an aggregate website. You can access hundreds of magazines and newspapers from around the world. He’s also got articles, polls and who knows what all. It’s a very cool website and you should check it out. http://www.planetconfusion.com/Planet_Confusion.html The thing is Curtis told me his website picked up 1,200 hits yesterday. Twelve hundred hits! What’s that all about? #167 Dad got nineteen. Of course it’s not a competition. And I’m happy for my old comedy buddy. Way to go Curtis!

By the way, when we were doing standup, I was much funnier than Curtis.

I’m doing pushups in the morning again. I started back on January first with just four pushups. Today I banged out thirty. The plan is to increase by a single pushup each day; you know, kind of like Hercules lifting the calf over his head every day. Barring complications, within five years I’ll be pumping out seventeen hundred and fifty pushups a day. I should mention that I’ve been on this program for several years and of course and I realize I’ll never actually make it to seventeen hundred and fifty pushups. A couple of years ago I did get to a hundred and twenty before I blew my shoulder out. Oh well, I’ll keep after it until I the next time I blow out my shoulder or tear a bicep, or rip my monombulous. It’s not like I’m willing just give up and get old. Besides, I wouldn’t have time to do seventeen hundred pushups. How long would that take, anyhow? Let me get my calculator…