Friday Jams: Elvis


I like this picture of Elvis Presley. It’s real. As real (I believe) as he’d allow anyway. I wrote briefly the other day on how I miss Walter Payton, well, I miss having the voices of Elvis; Freddie Mercury, Bing Crosby. Real. Raw. Comforting. One of my favorite songs on my i-pod right now is Queen’s Don’t Stop Me Now. It’s at the top of my current playlist. I just close my eyes and am enveloped in Freddie Mercury’s voice. Real singing. Pure. Starting the day with Freddy is just a good day.

I remember the day Elvis died. We were having a garage sale (I really hate those things but boy, getting twenty bucks cash for my old junk sure was fun) and I was inside while my Auntie was tallying up the sales to that point when it came on my AM radio that Elvis was dead. I was young, 10 years old I suppose. I wasn’t a huge Elvis fan but I knew that this was a big deal. A very big deal. I remember watching the news that night, the scene’s shown remind me of those in attendance when President Kennedy was shot. Shock, sadness. So much sadness.

I throw in an Elvis tune here and there on my playlists and his music was the only thing good about that stupid movie Lilo and Stitch (Srsly, Ohana means family and family means nobody gets left behind. Shut up, sometimes family is the exact people you should leave behind. Also, it was a toss up who was more annoying, the little girl or the alien. Srsly. I’ll listen to the soundtrack all day long but I’d rather watch elephants hump than that stupid movie again.)


My mom hated Elvis, that probably curbed the listening enjoyment as I was growing up. She thought he was vulgar. I think that’s kind of weird but to each their own. The 50’s weren’t happy times for her and music can bring such vivid memories of the past to us that I can understand her dislike.

But when Elvis died, I knew to remember that day. it’s not something I think about very often except times like this where I’m feeling a bit nostalgic for good and real things of the past. Music; sports; tube tops, and Levi’s corduroy bib overalls:


I had a pair exactly like these. I loved them. I miss them too.

One of the best things about competing in the Highland Games in the Masters class is the fact that it is very likely that I’ll meet other people who also miss all this 70’s stuff. You don’t have to explain what Bonnie Bell Lipsmacker or Bubsdaddy bubble gum is.


5 cents for a foot of bub’s daddy. My childhood was cool.

And then I met and spent time with my Las Vegas girl, Victoria Wechter and her love of Elvis makes me think about all this stuff. A better time for music, fashion, and sports. LeSigh.

So this one goes out to Victoria.

Enjoy the weekend,

More than anything else, I want the folks back at home to think right of me.

Elvis Presley 

About tosabarbell

For training opportunities at tosabarbell, call or text Juli at 320-296-9313. e-mail to At tosabarbell, I build relationships cultivated in a strength and learning environment. There is no 12 week magic pill program to strength but rather a lifetime commitment to be the very best and most useful human you can be. tosabarbell is a private, home grown gym with three lifting platforms; squat rack; prowlers; throwing implements; bars, bumpers and everything else needed for an effective strength and conditioning program. Straightforward barbell programming including the Olympic lifts; sound (read: not fancy bullshit) diet advance for weight gain or loss; and strong coaching will ensure you will meet your goals such as becoming stronger, more explosive, and better conditioned. I have been coaching teams and athletes for over 30 years. I grew up participating in various sports at various levels but was always drawn to those that require strength training. I have multiple local, national, and world records in the sports of Weightlifting and Highland Games Heavy Events as well as a combined total of 5 World Championships. My 5 years of training and coaching under Mark Rippetoe provided a wide range of influence from some of the top strength & conditioning and throwing coaches in the country. I will strongly encourage tosabarbell athletes to compete (and prepare you to do so.) However, tosabarbell is also for those who wish to be stronger and go through life feeling better. Matt WanAt is a retired Professional Strongman who competed frequently with Strongman Champions League in Europe. He played a year of D1 football with Iowa before concentrating on his Chemical Engineering degree in Iowa City. He is a native of Wauwatosa and still remains a staunch supporter of Tosa East. This blog will be a mixture of strength notes, coaching and nutrition tips, personal shit; bacon delicacies, and a whole lot of fun.
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