Ruffy

ruffy

When Ruffy Silverstein was the swimming coach at our local gym, he would allow ten or twelve kids to pin him to the mat. There were four on his ankles, six on his chest, and two on his thighs. Then he would slowly rise from the mat and catapult the kids all over the room. In his prime he weighed 225 lbs. and was only 5’-8”. At the University of Illinois, he never lost a match in three years of competition. He was the NCAA and AAU national champion.

I was unaware of this when I walked into the gym looking for a workout. All I saw was this short, squat, hairy looking, gorilla type guy asking if anyone else wanted to wrestle. I was amazed that everyone stood mute, and I told him I was ready. I told him to have no mercy on me. I figured, no matter how strong he was, I was faster.

We squared off and then he moved so quickly, he was a blur. Feet first, he got me in a scissors lock with his legs, flipped me over, and slammed my head against the mat. When I woke up, all I could see was stars. I think I saw the entire galaxy. My face was red because everyone was laughing.  That was the shortest match ever in the annals of this gym, and I never, ever, wrestled again. The good part is that I never, ever got another concussion.

(photo courtesy of Jesse Kunerth/Dreamstime.com)

About Jerry Goldberg

Jerry Goldberg grew up on the west side of Chicago. After high school, he was drafted in the Army during the Korean conflict. Upon his honorable discharge, he joined Local 130 in Chicago as a plumber, working from 1952 to 2000. Jerry has been happily married for 60 years, residing with his wife, Gloria, in Huntley, Illinois. They were blessed with two wonderful children, and have three grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
When his son encouraged him to get online, Jerry replied, "What do I need that for?" But all that changed a year into his retirement, when his daughter gave him a modem for his birthday, opening a whole new chapter. Finding stained glass insufficiently fulfilling, Jerry discovered the AARP message boards and began his one-finger magic. Eventually, he became quite proficient (two fingers), starting a board called, "Jerry's Corner."

This board was the second most popular board on AOL. Jerry bantered with any and all, and began writing humorous true stories of his past life. The stories you see here are a compilation of most he has written ... enjoy!

About Jerry Goldberg

Jerry Goldberg grew up on the west side of Chicago. After high school, he was drafted in the Army during the Korean conflict. Upon his honorable discharge, he joined Local 130 in Chicago as a plumber, working from 1952 to 2000. Jerry has been happily married for 60 years, residing with his wife, Gloria, in Huntley, Illinois. They were blessed with two wonderful children, and have three grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
When his son encouraged him to get online, Jerry replied, "What do I need that for?" But all that changed a year into his retirement, when his daughter gave him a modem for his birthday, opening a whole new chapter. Finding stained glass insufficiently fulfilling, Jerry discovered the AARP message boards and began his one-finger magic. Eventually, he became quite proficient (two fingers), starting a board called, "Jerry's Corner."

This board was the second most popular board on AOL. Jerry bantered with any and all, and began writing humorous true stories of his past life. The stories you see here are a compilation of most he has written ... enjoy!