Chapter 22, Blog 1
By Chuck Wells As Told To Ray Hochgesang
Tossing out the club members, Harry attacked me with his evaluative tools. First, I endured a homemade IQ exam, including an essay question about the type of pen I preferred, ballpoint or felt-tipped.
Harry would make no commitment until he knew my mental capacity. I tried hard to tolerate it. I wanted a coach. He tested my verbal skills with associative drills. He made me guess each scribbling in a series of abstract pencil drawings. I swear the last one looked like Frank Shorter. He peppered me with psychological queries.
“If you were a tree, what kind of tree would you be?”
“If you were a car, what kind of car would you be?”
“If you were a man, what kind …”
I was tempted to walk out on that one. As soon as Harry was sure I had a brain, he measured my head, my neck, my biceps, my fingers, my calf muscles, my feet – and grunted at each number. Then he measured from my right heel to the back of my left knee and whistled.
The only thing he didn’t do was open my mouth and look at my teeth. Me? I didn’t ask for his AARPor anything. Truth be told, if I knew then what I know now about Harry Nurmi, I would have torn out of that room, screeching. How clueless was I? After Harry agreed to take on my challenge, I suggested my new mentor move to Valparaiso and stay at my house until he could find a new place.
STOP! There’s no need to pile on. I’ve taken enough verbal abuse.
YES, I might have mental issues caused by my mother. Who doesn’t?
NO, Harry is just my coach. I’m not his bitch.
At the time, I wanted to facilitate training. I thought it was a good idea. It made sense. I didn’t want to drive to Michigan City every day. Maybe, too, I was honored, maybe a little in awe, to have a big-time coach, even if he were years past his prime. Sure, it was supposed to be for a few weeks, a month at the most, until he found a suitable place in a Valparaiso assisted-living facility.
He’s still looking.
Copyright © 2012 by Chuck H. Wells/Ray Hochgesang