Thursday, June 12, 2008


See the cellphone picture?? looks like the Loch Ness Monster..its actually my son Pat, the second year triathlete as I shot right into the sunset.. Horrible image..but, first..allow me to set it up.

Since my 2 wacky workouts last week. Pilates Sandwich and the "Devil Made me Do It" Hill workouts. (see previous posts if curious), I figured it was just about time to scale back the training as the Half Ironman at Morgantown is coming...ohhhh baby, its coming all right.

I planned the past Tuesday to be an off day, so I hung out with The Bride as she taught classes, ran errands . I wanted Wednesday to be a "Half Pilates Sandwich" workout. I would run the almost 9 miles to the studio, do the Pilates hour and then chill at Starbucks while The Bride went to Fitworks to hit the weights. So I wasn't planning on doing anything Tuesday...until......Patrick showed up at about 6pm.
" Hey Dad, wanna have a swim"
"I don't know Pat, today is my day off"
"Come on, the waters great"
(not saying anything, but giving husband "The Look"
"Sure, Pat, let me go "human sausage" now and squeeze into my wetsuit"

So, we walked down to our Beach Club, which is just a few houses away.. (The last time I jumped in the water at our Beach Club was this past New Years day when I did my solo Polar Plunge). On this glorious June evening, we climbed into the water..It was crisp. 59 degrees, but perfect. Waves were less than 2 feet..current moving from West to East. We took off, swimming into the current, towards the Hospital. (Makes sense, swim to a hospital...ahhh sure, why not!!!") My strokes were sharp, I moved easy. Pat cut through the water like....." buttah" We did little over a mile... 35 minutes. Since Pat got into the sport, he has become a pretty good swimmer. I remember his first race last Summer when he had that look on his face before the swim. The trepidation. The uneasiness. He conquered all of those negatives and make a heck of a positive out of it. So, on this Tuesday night, we got in a good workout and we had a chance to share a passion. It was very cool. I even got the cellphone cam to work a little better on this shot.
Pat asking me to swim, recalled the classic line in "Field of Dreams". Ray Kinsella, played by Kevin Costner magically saw his diseased father come to life on the field he constructed on his farm. Late in the flick, his father (as a young man) comes to life and it is at that time that Ray Kinsella asks his Dad.

" Hey Dad, wanna have a catch" (click here for movie version) Touching part is a bit into the video.

Its a touching scene. It always gets the tear ducts into full production. Its a spot where Boys and Dads connect, where they simplify things. Lets have a catch. Its bonding. It, is of course love. As a boy, my dad took me golfing. He watched me play sports. I am finding out now...things don't have to involve a ball and two gloves for young men to bond seemlessly with their Pops. I love to watch movies with our youngest Son, Joe as we share a passion for storytelling. My daughter, Courtney is a chef. I love to ask her about restaurants, and we kibitz about alot of sports.

So, in essence, my son was asking me to "have a catch"..only in this case the catch, was the slight cupping of our hands as we "caught" the water in the freestyle stroke and moved through the liquid.....our hearts beating strongly, enjoying life and testing our endurance for all its worth. A moment, frozen in time..significant in the living as in the re-living. Lets see Kevin Costner do that !!!. The Bride...a big thanks. She has a wonderful sense about moments that can be captured and not banked for later...about the times when "wanna have a catch" means alot more than wearing wetsuits, goggles and pride. Where a Freestyle of Dreams is an aqua version of "Field of Dreams"

And so, I want to wish all the Dads reading this, a Happy Fathers Day.


Donald said...

That's one beautiful swim, all right.

Several years ago, some guy wrote a book about having a catch with various people all across the country. He interviewed them while throwing, all kinds of people - famous, infamous, or everyday folks.

Happy Father's Day to you.

Kona Shelley said...

Awww that's touching, hope you have a wonderful weekend!

jahowie said...

Thanks for the Father's Day wishes, and the same to you. That's great that you and your son are able to do stuff like that together. Have a great weekend!!

Wes said...

Happy Father's Day, JT! I'm still working on my son's to tri. Maybe some day... :-)

GP said...

Awww, happy pops' day to you JT!

My dad and I used to go swimming together all the time (I've never known how to have fun in water, just laps and laps...) and watch Ironman each year. Now I've convinced him to train for Ironman! We'll be racing some IM in a few years. I hope it's as fun for him as it is for me!

TrainingtoTri said...

Ahhh how fun! That so great you guys can enjoy this sport together. You sound like a great dad!

Anonymous said...

I love that movie! Hope you have a great Father's Day :)

Lisa - Slow & Steady said...

Happy Father's Day. How wonderful to enjoy triathlon with your son. :)

Brian said...

Very touching. Maybe someday I'll have a moment like that. But for now mine consist of "me jump on dad's back" or "me jump on dads stomach"

Lily on the Road said...

You are truly blessed with love from the Bride and your children!

Happy Father's Day on Sunday JT!

Have a great weekend.

Joanna said...

Sounds like an awesome swim!

Viv said...

I still rather have the full Pilates sandwich, but that is just me.

What a better pard to train with than your son! That is buttah...

Have a wonderful weekend, and a Happy Fathers Day :-)

RunBubbaRun said...

A great moment for sure. To share the passions you have with your kids, no better gift, even thou he might not even realize it..

Cliff said...

That was one great swim. I was chuckling at your response, 'its my day off'.

Christine said...

awwww how nice! thats probably the best fathers day present ever! Better than the Paula Deens BBQ sauce I sent my dad..haha.

Rainmaker said...

Sounds like a great day - hope your fathers day goes as well also!

Marcy said...

Awwwwhhhhh how sweet :-) I can only hope my kiddies will want to do "something" with me when they get older LOL! HAPPY FATHER'S DAY!!

Kurt said...

I love that movie even though I am not a huge Costner fan.