I can bend the pole

When I was 8 or 9 years old, I was in a huge-to-me university production of Momotaro, that Japanese folktale also known as Peach Boy.

In one scene, Momotaro demonstrated his strength by bending a pole, and, thrill of thrills, I was chosen to eagerly exclaim that I, too, could bend the pole.

For some reason, I never saw the actual pole until that very scene on the first performance night. And for some reason during all of those rehearsals, nobody had told me that the actual pole was going to be basic mattress-grade styrofoam.

Yup, I, too, could bend the pole.

If you, too, want to show off your Momotaro-esque strength (that’s a word now), try this:

1) Make fists with both of your hands, then push your hands together at the knuckles. I’m sure there’s a specific name for that stance, but I don’t know what it is.

2) Call your best friend over to pull your arms apart at your elbows.

3) Didn’t work? No? Call over your favorite caretaker to try.

4) Didn’t work? Ah. Do you know why?

Here, read all about it or ask your favorite biology teacher to explain it.


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