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Default What I Learned from The Muscle Comics
by BendtheBar 10-23-2013, 07:15 AM

When I was a kid, they called them "muscle magazines."
Maybe some people still do. I call 'em "muscle comics."

Way back when I was a kid, I remember spotting an issue of a
certain muscle mag at a health food store where I would buy
Hoffman's High Protein Powder, Energol and Quick Gain
Weight Tablets.

I flipped through the magazine.

There was an article about a top champion of the day, and how
he built his world famous "cannonball delts."

Me, I weighed something like eighty or ninety pounds at the
time, and I sported what could charitably be described as
beebee sized delts.

So the cannonball thing was pretty appealing.

I looked around to make sure no one was looking. My friends
would have laughed at me if they had seen me buy a muscle
mag.

"Look, there's stick-boy Kubik. He thinks he's gonna be Mr.
America," they would have said.

I ran home and read the article. The cannonball delts guy did
four exercises. One of them was the seated press with a pair of
heavy dumbbells. The guy who wrote the article had actually
trained with the champ, so he knew all about it.

He said the champ used ninety pound dumbbells for his heavy
sets. Did six sets of six reps with them.

At the time, I was struggling with forty pounds in the barbell
press. So ninety pound dumbbell presses seemed pretty much
out of this world.

I read the article over and over, and pretty much memorized it.

Five or six years later, I was at the same health food store, and
I spotted another issue of the same magazine. I picked it up,
and saw exactly the same article about the guy with the
cannonball delts.

Same author, same photos, same four exercises, same sets,
same reps, same everything.

Except there was one difference. Instead of blitzing his
shoulders with ninety pounders, Mr. Cannonball Delts was
using one hundred fifty pounders.

I thought it over, and finally figured out that some over zealous
editor had decided to up the Champ's training poundages from
"really good" to superhumanly and supremely off the charts
out of sight over the top incredible.

Which is why the muscle comics report that this year's Mr.
Intergalactic MegaMuscles has twenty-three inch upper arms,
when they really measure eighteen and a half inches.

Why they claim he trains for seven hours six days a week when
he really only trains for an hour or ninety minutes four times a
week.

Most people who read the muscle comics believe everything in
them. There's not very much you can do for these people. If
someone truly believes everything he reads in the muscle mags,
it means his brain has gone into total sensory overload, fried
itself, and turned him into a zombie. So there's really no way to
help him.

I spotted a guy at the gym once. He was wearing a shirt with a
hand-lettered slogan done in heavy duty, industrial strength
magic marker. It was his creed. I think he based his entire life
on it.

"Shut up and trane."

And yes, that's how he spelled it.

He'd been reading too many muscle comics.

Yours in strength,
Brooks Kubik
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Old 10-23-2013, 08:04 AM   #2
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