I've just come back from the gym. I hate going to the gym. I thought by the time I had reached a certain age of maturity, having jettisoned the last of my dissipating habits of youth - I would come to enjoy the restorative feelings that accompany moving my body around. I remember Dad coming back from running three miles of a Saturday, as Charlie and I sat around watching cartoons, entering into the den in his monochrome Jim Fixx-era running outfit best modeled by Steve Austin (a man barely alive; gentlemen, we can rebuild him; we have the technology...) wondering aloud at how we could remain inside when exercise called to us on a beautiful day. I figured someday, when I got to be near 40, I'd feel the same.
But I don't. No edifying sense of smug entitlement. I'm just grumpy and peevish. I hate exercising. It will always be thus.
Maybe I'm also a little fatalistic today because while laboring on a treadmill, wishing for a swift and totalizing death, I saw four of five panelists on ESPN's pregame predict that the Jets will be the one of today's three 8-5 AFC East teams to crash and burn. It's been whispered among my students all week as they watch me skulk around in my solemn mood. Roche's team is going down. He's gonna be in a shitty mood all month. Now at least someone has come out and said it to my face. While I'm on the treadmill, no less, feeling my advancing age.
And working out the defensive problems isn't going to change it. Shortening practices during isn't going to change it, either, Mangini. The phrase underneath the Miami quarterback's picture on ESPN said it all this morning: "Pennington's accuracy is unparalleled." Ugh, I thought. I know, I know. Damn it. I had to slow my pace to a walk again as everybody else enjoyed their wide, steady stride - treadmills all around me working with factory-like efficiency. Slow down, Roche. We'll just keep it at this pace the rest of the way. Take a walk. You gave it a good try.