Dear Jack LaLanne,
As happens too often, I'm only getting around to telling you how I feel now that you're gone. And by gone I mean dead. But better late than never, no? You've done a lot for us, old guy, and I'm here to thank you for your tireless efforts.
And tireless might be an understatement. There's the body-building, and the swimming of the San Fransisco Bay, and who could leave out the juicing? But "juicing" as in veggies, not as in steroids. During your 75-year career, you changed a lot of lives.
Jack, there was a time when I was depressed and my body ached so badly that even reaching for the remote was a stretch. I don't want to bore you with the details, but for about 3 months, I was living life like a ghost trying to stay hidden and unnoticed in a dense fog. Laying in bed one morning (or afternoon, who really knows), an infomercial for the Jack LaLanne Power Juicer came on.
Your energy, your enthusiasm, your spirit (and let's not forget your singing) made me laugh. Dude, you were juicing those fruits and veggies with more passion than I had ever seen! And when you showed me how other juicers just don't match the quality of yours, I was sold. When you juiced an entire orange (peel and all!) with a slice of melon (rind and all!) and you did so while dancing with your wife, I said to myself, "Self, you are only three easy payments away from living the Jack LaLanne life."
I don't want to get too sappy here, but I remember your infomercial as a turning point in my life. And I'm sure there are countless other people out there whom you've inspired either as a fitness guru, health nut, or happy-living example.
So Jack, thank you. Thanks for having insane muscles as a 90-year-old. Thanks for encouraging us to do a simple push-up or eat fresh food before exercise distractions like the Wii Fit or over-complicated $40 raw-food lunch delivery. And thanks for your help.
Sit-Ups and Carrot Juice 4eva,
Photo via Toby Canham/Getty