Posted by: husbandandfatheroffour | March 13, 2013

A Day At The Pool

I was watching TV the other night and saw a preview for a new reality show.  All it showed was some celebrities who were going to jump off of an Olympic high dive.  I have no idea what else the show is about.  I just know that when I saw that preview the flashbacks of that nightmarish 15 minutes came rushing back.

 It was a hot summer day and we decided to take our daughter to the pool.  Another couple, friends of ours, met us there.  The day was going smoothly.  The water was perfect and we were all having fun.  Then it happened.  The lifeguard blew their whistles signaling it was time for everyone to get out of the pool so they could take their break.  During this time a couple of lifeguards go over to the 33ft. Olympic high dive platform, which is located at a separate pool, and everyone that wants to can jump off of it.  My friend tells me he is going to do it and asked if I wanted to.  I looked up at it, and it really didn’t look all that high, and I was jumping into water so I thought what the heck and said, “Yeah.”

 As we were climbing the stairs that lead to the top of the platform I was watching as younger kids were jumping off without a thought about how high it was.  I thought to myself, “Well how bad can it be then if there are 8 year olds doing it?”  We reached the top and it now was my friend’s turn to jump. He did his little jog and jumped. 

 Now it was my turn.  I was ready and this was going to be awesome.  I took a deep breath and started my little jog and when it was time to jump I put the foot brakes down and started flapping my arms in reverse hoping I would stop in time before I went over the edge.  With a wobble here and there I finally came to a complete stop right at the edge of the platform.  I looked down then looked at the lifeguard and said, “There is no way this is only 33 feet high.  I am going to back up because I need a second.”  She just looked at me weirdly and said ok.

 I turned and walked back and waved a couple of kids to go ahead of me.  I watched as again they are running and jumping with ease.  “I can do this,” I thought and was ready to try again.  I took a deep breath and this time decided I was just going to walk and jump.  As I was walking towards the edge of the platform I swore it was going up hill.  I felt by the time I got to the end of it, it was another 10 feet higher.  I stopped and stood there for a minute and again backed out of the jump.  Now this time I heard a bunch of groans coming from the kids behind.  They only had 15 minutes of this platform being open and they wanted to jump.  I waved some more ahead of me and as one of them ran by me to jump they said, “Chicken!”  I was just called a chicken by a 12 year old punk kid!  That was it, I was going to show that kid, and when I did it I was going to walk up to that 12 year old girl and say, “I guess you spoke to soon little missy.  You must feel dumb right about now!”  Then I would just turn and walk away not letting her reply.  I mean that is what any sensible 28-year-old would do, right? 

 After a few more minutes and a few more kids passed by I was ready once again.  The last kid to go before me was around 8 and before he went he said, “Just watch me.  It isn’t that hard,” and off he went.  “Alright he just ran, jumped, and did a full 360 off this thing so you can do this too.” I thought to myself.  I started my walk once again this time they were big strides with my arms going back and forth.  I couldn’t help thinking that I must look just like that video of big foot with this awkward walk I was doing.  Of course Bigfoot was over 6ft tall and I am only 5’5” so I must have looked like Bigfoot’s son instead. 

  As I make it to the end of the platform, I stop again.  Now the kids are angry, and their moans proved it.  “Come on just jump already!” one kid shouted.  “Somebody just push him off!” another yelled.  I looked back and glared at them hoping that would shut them up but these ‘children of the corn’ kids just glared even harder back at me.  I knew I was in trouble and had to do something fast or one of them would push me off for sure.  I looked down at the water and then back at the kids.  I think they had moved closer to me.  Again I looked down at the water and back at them.  They seemed even closer now.  Then the youngest of them yelled, “People that old shouldn’t be up here.” 

 “What does age have to do with it?” I thought.  I looked down one more time at the water but did not look back at them because I was sure it was their breath I was feeling on my back.  So I stood there proud and prepared to jump.  Then I let whatever manhood I had left leave my body, and I crouched down as low as I could – like that was going to make the fall shorter or something.  I then leaned forward and let my feet slip off the edge of the platform.  I am not sure, but I might have made that same whimpering sound the old lady in the movie Titanic makes when she tosses that diamond over the railing and into the ocean. 

 Now I am free falling at what has to be at least 100mph towards the water.  I panic and start flailing my legs back and forth.  I start flapping my arms up and down like they were wings and they were going to help me slow down and softly land in the water.  Nothing was working and I was headed towards what in my mind looked like a pool full of clear cement, if there was such a thing.  As my feet were to about to hit the water I guess I decided I wasn’t ready yet.  I quickly pulled my legs up and straight out in front of me still flapping my arms up and down.  BOOM!  I hit the water and my knees were now touching my face as my legs were pushed upward.  My arms finally stopped flapping as they hit the water perfectly perpendicular with the water.  I thought I had landed in a school of jelly fish the sting was so bad on my arms.  I finally came to a stop and was able to float back to the top of the water.  I used what little muscle I had left to swim over to the ladder and pull myself out of the water.  My wife and our friends were over to the side, just laughing hysterically.  As I walked over to them that 12 year old girl was walking towards my direction.  I thought for one second about saying something but decided not to.  As she walked by I swear she mumbled, “It’s about time,” with that snotty little 12 year old attitude and a smirk. 

 So, on that day I lost 15 minutes of my life I will never get back, a piece of manhood that will forever be gone – and I realized when children are in packs and you are blocking them from their fun, they might just be the scariest thing ever. 


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