If you are of a certain advanced age like me, you may recall Charles Atlas, “the World’s Number 1 Body Builder.” He regularly advised young Americans, like me, to “Don’t Be Half A Man!” He was a regular feature in ads in comic books, like Superman, which I read every night before going to bed so I might dream of flying.
“Take a good look at yourself,” he wrote. “Are you proud of your body — or are you satisfied to go through life being just ‘half the man’ you could be?”
He told us that “sleeping muscles” in our bodies could be awakened to turn us into “HE-MEN.” His secret was “Dynamic Tension,” which could transform us from wimps into god-like creatures who would attract girls like crazy. And all you needed to do was mail him 10 cents.
Alas, I never sent in my 10 cents. So I’m afraid that at the beach I was pretty much the “150-pound weakling” that Charles warned would be bullied and belittled by the young girls, whose measure of a man was by his muscles. I don’t recall being belittled, but I wasn’t turning too many female heads, I’m sad to admit.
What about you? Think back to when you were a teenager. Were you the 150-pound weakling type, or a HE-MAN like Charles Atlas? Did you ever send for his bodybuilding Dynamic Tension techniques? If so, did you get the girls?
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