The Wiggins

Press – 3/3/3+
45# / 50# / 57# (9 reps)

Power Clean – Work up to heavy double
5 x 33# / 4 x 53# / 3 x 63# / 2 x 83# / 2 x 93# / 2 x 103# / 113# (fail)

More frustration on the power cleans. Last cycle (one measly month ago) I got 113# for a double. Now, I couldn’t even get one rep. My power clean has gone down by seven pounds since this summer. Not sure why. Bad diet? Lack of sleep? Certainly valid reasons all, but there’s really nothing I can do but clean up the diet and keep working. Sleep is a non-option. I have to get up at 3:00 am every morning to check the heifers. If I don’t something could die, and that’s not worth seven pounds on a power clean.

The 3 AM heifer check is a bit of a mind bender. First of all, you’re jerked out of a deep, dark sleep and that’s a bit disorienting anyway. I have a clock radio and the only station that comes in at that time is the local public radio channel. At 3 AM the BBC World News is always on and without fail there is something bizarre being discussed. My favorite thus far was a woman with a thick Irish brogue reporting a story about a guy who built a mechanical unicorn. I seem to recall he was disappointed that he hadn’t made it levitate yet. Right.

With things like that bouncing around in my head I trudge out into the pitch black night to shine a flashlight at a bunch of cow’s rear ends. It’s probably a quarter mile from the house to the barn, and I drive down on a four-wheeler (aka, an ATV.) I’ve found it’s really easy to give myself a good case of the wiggins out there. I mean, anything could creep up behind you and jump on your back. And the sky! The sky in western South Dakota is huge. At night, it’s huge and black. Who knows what’s flying around up there. I didn’t grow up in a trailer park, so I’ve never been worried about being abducted by aliens, but one night a few weeks ago I swear I saw strange lights in the sky, and that’s no joke. I have no idea what it was, and I’ve never seen anything like it. Perhaps it was the levitating Irish unicorn. Hard to say.

One night a few years ago I was out making my rounds at 3 AM. It was really, really dark that night. No moon, no stars. I stopped to open a gate and as I was standing there I recalled people talking about a mountain lion being sighted in the area. I thought “A mountain lion could be stalking me right now!” Almost as soon as I had that thought I heard something very large and very fast running up behind me. Have you ever been so scared your heart stopped? It happened to me once before. I was walking home from work in town and I passed by a yard with a chest high wooden fence. A little yippy dog – one of those that’s all teeth and eyeballs – jumped up right by my face and went AYIYIYIYIYIYIY! It startled me so much my heart stopped momentarily and I saw the white light. That’s exactly what happened when the large, fast unknown creature came up behind me. I thought that was it for me. Sayanora baby!

Luckily for me, it turned out to be one of my pet heifers that had gotten out of the pen and saw me drive up to the gate and thought “A snack!” That was a relief, until I thought about it a little more and I realized that if a mountain lion saw me stop to open a gate it would think exactly the same thing “A snack!”

It doesn’t make me sleep any easier.

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