Win some, lose some…

Nick Wolochatiuk
Win some, lose some…
Nick Wolochatiuk

With more than eight decades of experience under my belt, I realize one’s trials and errors begin to outnumber any impressive physical or intellectual feats. I fondly look back upon the rare times I’ve excelled.

I was on a first date, walking a girl home. We were getting to know each other. I was out to impress her.

Playfully, as if to test me, she challenged, “Bet you couldn’t hit that street lamp over there from here.” I was full of hope but absolutely void of confidence. With a false air of bravado, “Just watch this!” came out of my mouth as the hard-packed snowball was given a mighty heave. It was a ‘Hail Mary try’ at the impossible. The snowball climbed the 20 feet, travelled up the 50 feet and hit the target right on!

She could not hold back her gushing amazement. I could barely conceal my amazement.

I possess few social pastime skills. Water is my preferred drink at a bar. I’ve never played chess, Monopoly or cards. However, my steady girlfriend’s relatives could pass an entire evening playing poker, her uncles slapping their cards down and raising the ante. I’d be reading some book in the corner of the room. One evening, Uncle Albert threw out a challenge: “Think you’re too good to play with us?” I glanced up, paused, then said, “Shuffle, then cut the deck… Done? King of diamonds?” Amazingly, it was. By some act of divine intervention, my credentials as a card shark were established!

One memory much treasured was the one I call “Road Barrier vs. Bicycle”. I heard that our gravel Heron Road was blocked off. As is oft written, it was a dark and stormy night, but I set off on my bike to see what was the matter.

Rounding a curve, I was blinded by an oncoming truck’s high beams. Bang! My front wheel slammed against a road block. I involuntarily did a forward somersault over the barrier, landing upright on my feet like Nadia Comăneci, the gold medal Olympic gymnast.

The construction workers scrambled out of their truck, saying, “Wow! Could you do that again!”

Have you ever had a one of those kind of never again triumphs?

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