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Total Recall Book. One of the most anticipated autobiographies of this generation , Arnold Schwarzenegger's Total Recall is the candid story by one of the world's. Total Recall: My Unbelievably True Life Story. Permalink I recently spent a fantastic week in the company of Arnold Schwarzenegger, a former tank driver in the Austrian Critics dismissed the book as “light.” I beg to differ. 年9月8日 Libro Total Recall: My Unbelievably True Life Story (writer Arnold Schwarzenegger) libro gratuito da xiaomi book Total Recall: My Unbelievably.
We were bigger than most of the other boys, but since I was a year younger, Meinhard usually won these head-to-head competitions. I was always on the lookout for ways to gain the advantage. When he was ten, he finished elementary school in our village and graduated to the Hauptschule, which was over the ridge in Graz. To get there involved taking public transportation, and the bus stop was about a twenty-minute walk from our house. The problem for Meinhard was that school activities usually ran until well after sunset on the short winter days, so he had to make his way home after dark.
He was too scared to do this alone, so it became my job to go to the bus stop and pick him up. In fact I was scared too, going out in the dark alone at age nine.
There were no streetlamps, and Thal was pitch black at night. There was always some witch or wolf or monster waiting to hurt the child. Having a policeman as a father also fed our fears. Or word would get around that he and his men had caught some thief, and we would run down to the station to look at the guy sitting there, handcuffed to a chair. Reaching the bus stop was not a simple matter of following a road. The footpath wound past the castle ruins and downhill along the edge of the woods.
One night I was walking on that path, keeping a close eye for threats in the trees, when suddenly, out of nowhere, a man was in front of me on the path. There was just enough moonlight to make out his shape and his two eyes shining. I screamed and stood frozen—it turned out to be just one of the local farmworkers headed the other way, but if it had been a goblin, it would have gotten me for sure.
I fought back my fear mainly because I had to prove that I was stronger. This determination paid off. For the trouble of picking up Meinhard, my father gave me five schillings a week. This chore earned five schillings as well, money I happily spent on ice cream or my stamp collection. The downside, however, was that my parents grew more protective of Meinhard and gave less attention to me. Gradually our paths diverged. He made it his thing to learn the name and population of every world capital and the name and length of every significant river in the world.
He memorized the periodic table and chemical formulas. He was a fanatic about facts and would challenge our father constantly to test what he knew.
At the same time, Meinhard developed an aversion to physical work. He started wearing white shirts to school every day. Now he starts with his white shirts.
Do you want to be a mechanic? How about a furniture maker? I had other ideas. Somehow the thought took shape in my mind that America was where I belonged. Nothing more concrete than that. Compared to Thal, Graz was a giant metropolis, complete with cars and shops and sidewalks.
There were no Americans there, but America was seeping into the culture. All the kids knew how to play cowboys and Indians. We saw pictures of American cities and suburbs and landmarks and highways in our textbooks and in grainy black-and-white documentaries shown on the clackety movie projector in our class.
More important, we knew that we needed America for safety. In Austria, the Cold War was immediate. Whenever there was a crisis, my father would have to pack his backpack and leave for the Hungarian border, fifty-five miles to the east, to help man the defenses. A year earlier in , when the Soviets crushed the Hungarian revolution, he was in charge of taking care of the hundreds of people fleeing into our area. He set up the relocation camps and helped the refugees get where they wanted to go.
Some wanted to go to Canada; some wanted to stay in Austria; and of course many wanted to go to America. He and his men worked with the families, and he had us kids come along and help feed them soup, which made a big impression on me. It ran an hourlong show over and over all day. First would be a newsreel with footage from all around the world and a voice-over in German, then Mickey Mouse or some other cartoon, and then commercials consisting of slides of various stores in Graz.
Finally, music would play, and the whole thing would start again. President Dwight Eisenhower making a speech. Clips of jet airliners and streamlined American cars and movie stars. Those are images I remember. There was also boring stuff, of course, and stuff that went right over my head, like the crisis over the Suez Canal. American movies made an even deeper impression.
I thought he was going to swing right out of the screen at us. I thought that was a good life. Meinhard and I went back to see it several times. Mostly they showed Westerns but also comedies and dramas.
The only problem was the strictly enforced rating system. A policeman assigned to the theater would check the ages of ticket holders going in. Sometimes a friendly cashier would let me wait until the movie started and then signal with his head toward the aisle where the policeman was standing. I paid for my amusements with money I earned from my first entrepreneurial venture, selling ice cream at the Thalersee in summer The Thalersee was a public park, a beautiful lake nestled in the hills on the eastern end of Thal, about a five-minute walk from our house.
The lake was easy to reach from Graz, and in summer thousands of people would come for the day to relax, to swim and row, or to play sports. The park was big enough that, depending where your blanket was, going to the patio could mean a ten-minute hike, and your ice cream would be half melted by the time you got back.
I discovered I could buy dozens of ice-cream cones for a schilling apiece and then walk around the lake and sell them for 3 schillings. The ice-cream proprietor welcomed the extra business and even loaned me a trunk to keep the cones cold. Eventually my ice-cream earnings ran out, and being broke did not sit well with me.
The solution I came up with that fall was panhandling.
It could be a middle-aged man or a student. Or maybe a farm lady who was in town for the day. Sometimes she would chase me away, but most often she would say something like Du bist so dumm! How stupid can you be to do that? Five schillings. Of course, I had no intention of repaying. That was enough to go to the toy store and go to the movies and really live it up! The hole in my scheme was that a schoolkid alone on the street in the middle of a weekday was conspicuous.
And a lot of people in Graz knew my father. Inevitably, somebody said to him, I saw your son on the street in town today, asking a woman for money. This led to a huge uproar at home, with tremendous physical punishment, and that put an end to my panhandling career. I became absolutely convinced that I was special and meant for bigger things. America was the most powerful country, so I would go there. But the thought of going to America hit me like a revelation, and I really took it seriously.
The Hauptschule, or general school, was not geared to turn out the next world leader. It was designed to prepare children for the world of work. Boys and girls were segregated in separate wings of the building. Students got a foundation in math, science, geography, history, religion, modern language, art, music, and more, but these were taught at a slower pace than in academic schools, which prepared kids to go on to a university or technological institute.
Completing Hauptschule generally meant graduating to a vocational school or an apprenticeship in a trade, or going straight into the workforce.
Still, the teachers were very dedicated to making us smart and enriching our lives in every way they could. They would show movies, bring in opera singers, expose us to literature and art, and so on.
I learned the lessons, did the homework, and stayed right in the middle of the class. Reading and writing took discipline for me—they were more of a chore than they seemed to be for some of my classmates. On the other hand, math came easily; I never forgot a number and could do calculations in my head. The discipline at school was no different from that at home.
The teachers hit at least as hard as our parents. The math teacher hit my friend in the back of the head so hard that his face bounced on the desk, and he broke two front teeth. Parent-teacher conferences were the opposite of today, where schools and parents go out of their way not to embarrass the kid. You work on it during the next couple of hours while your parents come through. One after the next, the parents would come in: the farm lady, the factory-worker dad. It was the same scene almost every time.
I knew his footsteps, his police boots. Then he would walk out without comment. It was a tough time all around. Hardships were routine. Dentists did not use anesthesia, for instance. When you grow up in that kind of harsh environment, you never forget how to withstand physical punishment, even long after the hard times end. Then he would pack some clothes in his schoolbag so that nobody would catch on, and disappear.
My mother would go nuts. My father would have to phone all his buddies at the different gendarmerie stations in search of his son. It was an incredibly effective way to rebel if your father was the police chief. I was always amazed that there were no consequences. Maybe my father was just trying to defuse the situation. My desire was to leave home in an organized way. Because I was still just a kid, I decided that the best course for independence was to mind my own business and make my own money.
I would do any kind of work. I was not shy at all about picking up a shovel and digging. During school vacation one summer, a guy from our village got me a job at a glass factory in Graz where he worked.
My task was to shovel a big mound of broken glass into a wheeled container, cart it across the plant, and pour it into a vat for melting back down. At the end of each day, they gave me cash. The following summer, I heard there might be work at a sawmill in Graz. I took my schoolbag and packed a little bread-and-butter snack to tide me over until I got home.
Then I took the bus to the mill, got up my nerve, walked in, and asked for the owner. They brought me to the office along with my satchel, and there was the owner, sitting in his chair. What do you want? And he said, What do you want to do? Still, he took me out into the yard and introduced me to some women and men at a machine for cutting scrap lumber into kindling. I started right then and there and worked at the yard the rest of the holiday.
One of my duties was to shovel great mountains of sawdust onto trucks that would take it away. That was a good amount in those days. I knew exactly what to do with the money. So a tracksuit was the first thing I bought. Then with the cash I had left, I bought myself a bicycle.
Nobody else in our house owned a bike; my father had bartered his for food after the war and never replaced it. In the event of nuclear war, sirens would sound. We were supposed to close our books and hide under our desks with our heads between our knees and our eyes squeezed shut.
Even a kid could figure out how pathetic that was. Kennedy, and Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev. Very few families had a television at home, but we all knew an electrical shop in the Lendplatz in Graz that had two TVs in the window.
We ran down and stood on the sidewalk watching news reports on the meetings. But we watched! We were part of the action. We were living in a frightening situation.
Every time Russia and America argued about anything, we felt we were doomed. Chairman, there will be a war.
It will be a cold, long winter. When Khrushchev put up the wall in Berlin that fall, you heard adults telling one another, This is it. The gendarmerie was then the closest thing Austria had to an army, and my father had to go to the border with his military uniform and all his gear.
He was away a week until the crisis cooled down. My class of thirty or so adolescent boys was full of testosterone, but nobody wanted a war. Our interest was more in girls.
They were a mystery, especially for kids like me who did not have sisters, and the only time we got to see them at school was in the courtyard before class because they were taught in their own wing of the building.
How do you talk to them? Our first class of the day was math. Instead of opening the textbook, the teacher said, I saw you guys out there. We better talk about this. But today he was on a nonviolent track. You guys want those girls to like you, right? A few of us nodded our heads.
It is natural that you want that because we love the opposite sex. Eventually you want to kiss them, you want to hug them, and you want to make love to them. More people nodded. Is that the way you express your love? Where did you figure that out? Now he really had our attention. We realized that if you wanted a girl, you had to make an effort to have a conversation, not just drool like a horny dog. You had to establish a comfort level.
And I took these tips and carefully stored them away. During the very last week of class, I had a revelation about my future. It came to me during an essay-writing assignment, of all things. The history teacher always liked to pick four or five kids and pass out pages of the newspaper and make us write reports discussing whatever article or photo interested us. This time, as it happened, I was picked, and he handed me the sports page.
On it was a photo of Mr. Austria, Kurt Marnul, setting a record in the bench press: kilograms. But what really struck me was that he was wearing glasses. They were distinctive; a little tinted. I associated glasses with intellectuals: teachers and priests. Yet here was Kurt Marnul lying on the bench with his tank-top shirt and tiny waist, an enormous chest, and this huge weight above his chest—and he had on glasses.
I kept staring at the picture. How could someone who looked like a professor from the neck up be bench-pressing kilos? I read it out loud and was pleased when I got a good laugh.
But I came away fascinated that a man could be both smart and powerful. Along with my new interest in girls, I was more conscious of my body. I was beginning to pay close attention to sports: looking at athletes, how they worked out, how they used their bodies.
A year before, it meant nothing; now it meant everything. As soon as school ended, my friends and I all made a beeline for the Thalersee. I quickly started making friends among the boxers, wrestlers, and other athletes. He let me be his sidekick and help with his work. Willi was a good all-around athlete. He had this whole routine of using the park as his gym, doing chin-ups on the trees, push-ups and squats in the dirt, running up the trails, and doing standing jumps.
Willi was friends with a pair of brothers who were really well developed. One was in university and one was a little younger. They were lifters, bodybuilders, and the day I met them, they were practicing shot put. They asked if I wanted to try, and started teaching me the turns and steps.
Then we went up to that tree where Willi was doing chin-ups again. I barely could hold on because the branch was thick and you had to have really strong fingers. I managed one or two reps, and then I slipped off. Willi said, You know, if you practice this the whole summer, I guarantee you will be able to do ten, which would be quite an accomplishment. And I bet your lats would grow a centimeter on each side. By lats, he meant the back muscles just below the shoulder blades, the latissimi dorsi.
And then we followed him up the hill through the rest of his routine. From then on, I did the exercises with him every day. We rode up in a car with a bunch of guys, a four-hour drive.
The trip took longer than we thought, so we only we got there for the last event, which was the super-heavyweight lifters. The winner was an enormous Russian named Yuri Vlasov. There were thousands of people in the auditorium yelling and screaming after he pressed The weight lifting was followed by a bodybuilding contest, Mr. World, and this was my first time seeing guys oiled up and pumped and posing, showing off their physiques.
Afterward we got to go backstage and see Vlasov in person. A year later, though, everything was starting to register, and I realized I wanted to be strong and muscular.
Within ten years, he had earned his college degree and was a millionaire from his business enterprises in real estate, landscaping, and bodybuilding. He led the state through a budget crisis, natural disasters, and political turmoil, working across party lines for a better environment, election reforms, and bipartisan solutions.
With Maria Shriver, he raised four fantastic children. In the wake of a scandal he brought upon himself, he tried to keep his family together.
Until now, he has never told the full story of his life, in his own voice. Here is Arnold, with total recall. Chapter 1 Out of Austria I was born into a year of famine. In May, two months before I was born, there were hunger riots in Vienna, and in Styria, the southeastern province where we lived, the food shortages were just as bad.
Thal was the name of our very typical farm village. A few hundred families made up the entire population, their houses and farms clustered in hamlets connected by footpaths and lanes. The unpaved main road ran for a couple of kilometers up and down low alpine hills covered with fields and pine forests.
We saw very little of the British forces who were in charge—just an occasional truck with soldiers rolling through.
But to the east, Russians occupied the area, and we were very conscious of them. The priests in church would scare the congregation with horror stories of Russians shooting babies in the arms of their mothers.
Our house was on the top of a hill along the road, and as I was growing up, it was unusual to see more than one or two cars come through a day. A ruined castle dating back to feudal times was right across from us, one hundred yards from our door. My earliest memories are of my mother washing clothes and my father shoveling coal.
I was no more than three years old, but the image of my father is especially sharp in my mind. He was a big, athletic guy, and he did a lot of things himself. We were always so proud to be his assistants. My father and mom both originally came from working-class families farther north—factory laborers, mostly, in the steel industry.
She was in her early twenties, and a war widow—her husband had gotten killed just eight months after their wedding. Working at her desk one morning, she noticed my father passing on the street—an older guy, in his late thirties, but tall and good looking and wearing the uniform of the gendarmerie, the rural police. She was crazy about men in uniforms, so every day after that she watched for him. She figured out when his shift was so she would be sure to be at her desk.
His name was Gustav Schwarzenegger. They got married late in He was thirty-eight, and she was twenty-three. My father was assigned to Thal and put in charge of a four-man post responsible for the village and nearby countryside. My boyhood home was a very simple stone and brick building, well proportioned, with thick walls and little windows to keep out the alpine winters.