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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Buster Blames the Booze

Buster Martin (about whom I've written before) still claims to have been born in 1906. He thinks he knows why some records assign him a 1913 birth date, keeping him from being recognized as the world's oldest marathon runner.

"I celebrated me seventh birthday in a pub with a pint and a cigar," he says. He first went to the doctors in his 70s, he reckons, and was asked how long he had been smoking and drinking. "All my life - since 1913," he replied, referring to the year he says he took up smoking. The doctor "never actually asked me my date of birth. He was probably coming to that and he put 1913. I'm not worried about that, but when somebody asks me a question I've got a very retentive mind and I can always remember the words that were said." Besides, he casts doubt on the doctor's record-keeping with a delightful embellishment: he later saw him drinking "double-doubles" down the pub. [Link]

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