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My body is an engineering disaster

So the human body is a miraculous piece of art, or so we've been told over the centuries by poets, philosophers and the owners of Pure Pleasure in Hermantown. Every piece of our anatomy works in skilled precision with the other and through this graceful interaction, we are able to accomplish a myriad of physical activities each and every day. Unless, of course, you have a back like mine. Then you're lucky if you can stand up without drooling.

My back gets thrown out more than Kent Hrbek trying to steal second. And when this "delicate machinery" goes kablooey, it feels like Paul Bunyan has taken giant coils of lumberjack rope, tied them into huge, hairy knots, then thrown all of that away and asked Babe to squish every one of my lower back muscles.

I don't usually complain. I'm a Minnesota man, after all. The only thing that usually gets a rise out of me is when the tater-tot hot dish doesn't have enough hots or tots. But when my lame excuse for a rear side decides to get squinchy, I turn into a stooped senior citizen who scowls more than Donald Rumsfeld when the Pentagon cafeteria runs short of soup.

And it can happen anytime, anywhere, without warning. Last week at the Minnesota State Fair I was walking along, minding my own deep-fried Snickers Bar business, when I felt my lower back go twa-a-a-a-a-ng as though my spine was tuning up to accompany the Dixie Chicks on the Grandstand. The quick stab of torment quickly evaporated, but I knew the end was near.

My chiropractor has informed me that when my back sends me that particular signal, it's saying "Guess what time it is? Achy Breaky Back time!" (OK, my chiropractor didn't use those exact words, but I caught his gist. Right after he caught my wallet.) It was a warning shot across my butt bow, letting me know the slow descent into 45-degree angle-ness was about to begin. And so it did.

Of course, this transpired last Saturday and I am currently hunched over my keyboard like Brad Bennett praying to the God of Intelligible Words, unable to do anything but moan until my chiropractor comes back from his long weekend of unrelated back money stuff.

Anyone out there want to trade backs with me? Sure, mine's not a miraculous piece of human body art, but I do have another organ that doesn't get used much so it's in pristine condition.

What? I'm talking about my brain! Sicko ...

Brian Matuszak

Brian Matuszak is the founder of Rubber Chicken Theater and invites you to follow him and his theater company on Twitter at, like them on Facebook at Rubber Chicken Theater and visit their website at