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taking off the lid . . .


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Jul 29, 2006
Wow ....alfresco...........great post .....sitting at work on a slow night and that post blew me away ......I really hope you start some posts again ......with your favorite routines ......things you have witnessed from the top guys you have got to see ......and some of your conversations with aurthor jones.......you have so much to bring to this board ......i hope you take the lid off so to speak ........you have so much to share about bbing and life experience we are so lucky to have you here ........I hope you open up .....I would love have the board see the man I have got to know glimpses of and look forward to knowing so much better...........Hope you and the wife are great and are enjoying being reunited after her long journey ........much love

Iabadman, those are very thoughtful and generous words. Thank you. But your
life experience makes me look like I have been locked in solitary confinement
for my entire life. Our long conversation last weekend made for the shortest,
most enjoyable trans California road trips in memory. Thank you again for
being there. Looking forward to more quality time with you..

Now . . . I thought I was, had been, taking the lid off so to speak ;) I'll see
what I can do in that department.

Yes, I have been fortunate to have done a few things, been a few places and
spent some time with some interesting people, many of which had absolutely
nothing to do with bodybuilding which in my opinion, in many ways, is a good

I'm not a big science fiction reader, but one such book I truly did enjoy was
called Time Enough for Love by Robert A. Heinlein. The protagonist in the
book was a man called Lazarus Long and one of his most famous quotes
is "A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher
a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts,
build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate,
act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program
a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization
is for insects."

I have always been fond of that quote and have believed that a wide variety of life
experiences is preferable to being outstanding or specializing in any one particular
thing. There is a real synergy in that, how totally unrelated things or activities
can contribute in unsuspected ways.

Many of the things I have done are impossible to do now due to the political
climate or they are just too plain dangerous. Many of the places have been
spoiled by the influx of tourists (technically speaking, I was one) or by the governments.
And many of the interesting people I have been fortunate to know and spend time
or either dead or so near death that their passing will surprise no one. And those
that are still alive, well, I'll get around to them in due course . . .

As hard it may be to believe from my posting here, I am very guarded with
most people about my life experiences, and prefer to be under the radar. And in
particular is my relationship Arthur Jones which started back in the early 70's
and continued, grew closer and stronger, up until the time of his death. I was
very fortunate to spend a great deal of quality time with him and his wife
during the later years of their lives and in doing so was told many things in
confidence, and many things would just not be appropriate to discuss in a public

While I am more than happy to bring him into the mix now and again or answer
questions, I would also be a fool not to be aware that he had a very polarizing
personality and while his accomplishments were legion (not just in the field of
exercise), many bodybuilders I believe feel betrayed, angered that his "inventions"
and his philosophy about exercise, bodybuilding especially, and the results that
many, if not most failed to achieve were not in concert with all the marketing and
publicity that was afforded them. Enough said.

When I was much younger, I aspired to transform my physique into something
that I soon found out I did not have the genetics to achieve. Though I certainly
had the will and the desire, but all I had to really do is climb up into the
family tree and look around. It just wasn't in the cards. At one point in time
I achieved what some may call spectacular results; was told I was too big,
people that had not seem me for some time did not recognize me, others said
that I had grown "shorter", (an illusion created by my different bodily proportions)
and a bunch of other things, some true, some false, some nice, and some not
so nice. That was truly a magical time in my life as far results were concerned;
all the stars must have aligned in my favor.

I was 22 years old when I made the best progress in my life by training to failure,
3 time per week. I could and did finish my workouts in under 30 minutes. It was
a pre-exhaust routine; 2 sets of 2 exercises per body part. (I have outlined my
routine in great detail in prior posts here.) We used no supplements of any kind.
My workout partner and I grew so fast that we both were simply amazed. We
couldn't believe it, and so couldn't the people that saw us during that time. But I
was never quite satisfied.

Then things changed, it's called life.

Weight training has been one of the few constants in my life. As somebody once said,
if you have ever achieved meaningful results as a function of weight training, you
will always gravitate back to it. Well, I never left and in retrospect, I believe that I
have always been trying to duplicate the results of some thirty plus years past,
trying about a million different things and without a satisfactory degree success I
might add (though some might argue with that). Being old enough now to realize
it just isn't going to happen, I none the less keep trying, enjoying the process and
benefits that can be derived from it.
This can be good...

As I said in OF's thread, there is SO MUCH one can gather from reading other's "biography's" if you will here. I look forward to learn from the things you "let out" whenever you take the "lid off."
You are awesome man...I don't know how to say it any different. Everytime I read one of your posts, I am left speechless...like now...I want to know more about your trip to non-modernized villages..like the Masai tribe!!

DAMN! i just read your post and became engulfed in it, classic post bro, I absolutely love it when you post!

ha when i become frustrated at the mindframe of this board sometimes in certain threads and then you come on and post, its refreshing! your intellegence is like a fresh breath of air and i feel like i can freaking breath again! RESPECT!

Tell your stories. I agree with the gents above regarding your posts. I also thoroughly enjoy the outdoors, hiking, reading and good pictures.

You've got a lot to share. Don't hesitate to do so, Alfresco.
Great writing Alfresco - really enjoyed it and I look forward to reading more!
See Ron .......look at the men that replied ........I knew you be well recieved .....That was beautifully written and I enjoyed the quote that you shared very much......so much, I may have to steal that one for myself..lol......You are the kind of man that can add a nice center to this board .....and bridge life's lesson's with bbing.......i look forward to you to continue adding to this thread over time and keeping it alive......I wish I was sitting at a camp fire right now with all the guys here listening to share your stories and insight ......good stuff keep it going my friend.......And I too , look forward to many more talks personally with you .......ttys .....be well
I enjoy your posts. I haven't heard one that wasn't well thought out.
Wow my friend. Alfresco, this post really resonated with me. For different reasons, but still drew me in and made me read every word. Very well written. I look forward to reading more from you. Thank you for sharing.
You write a lot in posts, but i read every word.. you are doing something right
You should never stop writing. The way you tell a story, and arrange your thoughts, you are a true master of the art. i skip over A LOT of posts but yours pull me right in. I look forward to reading more.
heinlien rocks...

nice post...intresting and intelligent....and darwin too ? sweet.

you familiar with ayn rand?
I'll tell you this you are one of the few names I see here and no matter what the title says I take time to read....by all means please share some stories...
Funny. I don't see much today in our modern society that sets a tone for, "Men" to better themselves.

That, "tiny" post open eyes and creates a mental appetite to be filled.
Great post! I will join in with the others in saying I really like your posts and way with words. Very enjoyable! …and I am looking forward to more observations from you about life and bodybuilding.
There are a few guys on this board I'd give anything to meet. Alfresco my friend, you are certainly one of them. Very nice post.... thx to iabadman for coaxing it out of him ;)
As I said in OF's thread, there is SO MUCH one can gather from reading other's "biography's" if you will here. I look forward to learn from the things you "let out" whenever you take the "lid off."

Completely agreed! It is really awesome to read Alfresco's posts and feel the wisdom with the words he puts in his posts. I think it would be awesome to sit and have a couple cups of coffee with him and many on this board and just bullshit about life.
Great post Alfresco, we need more people like you on this board. I really enjoy reading your post.
thank you

Thank you all for your kind words and encouragement.
I am truly flattered.

I seem to have painted myself into a corner . . . put
up or shut up ;) I'll do what I can to be a bit more
forthcoming with some of my experiences, opinions
and observations such as they are. Sounds like there
is some interest. I'll do what I can to, like Iabadman
said, keep this thread alive.

And I'll try and embellish on some things I have alluded
to and whenever possible, try and keep it relative to
bodybuilding, plus post up some fotos. But most of all
be like a bumper sticker I once saw, which read . . .
"Anything But Boring."

May just have to dust off, polish up a few things I have
posted here a long time ago that I think have some
value but were for whatever reason, were overlooked or
failed to generate (my) the desired response. Egotistical?
Self centered? An over inflated sense of self-worth?
Perhaps, but it might be fun to read them again under a
different light, especially for the new members.

I'll end with a quote I like very much, used to be my
signature line, unfortunately I can't remember who said it . . .

"Tell me what you know, tell me what you don’t know, and tell
me what you think. And keep these three things separate."
Tom Platz in LA

I wrote this about a year ago in the form of a PM to a well respected
member on this forum. Just ran across it and thought it might be worth
sharing with other members . . .

It was a long time ago so I'm fuzzy on all the details. A lot of bridge
under the water since them.

What I do remember is that I took my cousin down to Gold's / World
Gym in LA when she got interested in bodybuilding. I used to go
drive down from Nor Cal all the time in the summer, just to hang out
in the gym, at the beach, to train and and watch the monsters train.
Somehow, she quickly made friends with a manager at Venice Gold's
we soon found ourselves invited to this sneak preview, a posing "
exhibition" with Tom Platz. (It's amazing what doors open when you
have warm, friendly, attractive woman at your side. This would have
never happed to me if I was solo. Trust me.

We arrived back at the gym late that evening (Chris Dickerson was the
only guy training at the gym that evening, I think he had a key or some-
thing) for a ride to the "show". We all piled into his car, but first we had
to stop by Ken Waller's house for something or another. After that, we
drove to this small, intimate outdoor, half circle theater somewhere
(Hollywood?) where Tom did his posing routine. I really don't know
what the occasion was other than obvious. Don't recall any tickets or
money changing hands, I know I had nothing to do with either one. It
was a balmy LA summer evening. Just delightful.It was a small turnout,
not many people, probably just friends and relatives.

He was in terrific condition, his torso remarkably improved. I had seen
Tom train before, not legs, which I would have loved to have witnessed;
it was shoulders. I remember him using a "Smith Machine" in particular
(not seated is what I remember) and the insane intensity he applied to
each and every exercise. When he was training, the entire gym would
ratchet it up a notch. You could not help but want to train hard or you
would be embarrassed being there, breathing the same oxygen.

Was sorry to find out down the road that he got injured, but remembering
how hard he trained, it's no small wonder, sooner or later, something
has got to give.

Tom as usual gave a stunning performance, his signature move where
he slicks back his hair and all. He really knew how to free pose, how
to display his strengths, and hide his weaknesses.

I remember standing around talking (mostly listening) with him after the
demo and I could not get over how huge his legs were. I swear I could
see the cuts in legs through the sweat pants he had on.

And no, I did not ask him about "dosages". It never occurred to me and if it
had, I probably would have, my naiveté such as it was at the time. And his
training was something I had witnessed, so him answering questions about
it, describing it, would have been pointless for him. After all, how could one
convey the intensity with which he trained. All I remember is how nice he
was and his remarkable condition. I was in awe.

Like many things in life, it's all about access. And a truly nice woman
by your side (cousin or otherwise) can get you places. I took a photo of her
with Tom that night. She was a huge Platz fan. I've been hounding her for the
foto's I took of her with many of the big dogs at the time, Mike Mentzer,
Roy Callender, "Rocky" Deferro (RIP, heart disease?), etc . . . Now that her
daughter is off to college, she has promised to dig for them.

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