A long time ago in a galaxy far away I was once 35 years old.  I’ve never been one who was overly concerned with “getting older”, but as I look back in time I am often fascinated by how some days, weeks or months  seem to last forever while simultaneously ensuing years seem to fly by.  I referenced age 35 to share a related story

Back when I was 35 I played my last game of “touch/tackle” football.  It was around Thanksgiving so myself and a few neighborhood fellas got together for the annual “Turkey Bowl”, the Rite of Passage for football wanna be’s who were not ever good enough to be considered a “has beens”.  Lotta fun though. 

So, as I said this was my last time playing in the game. It had been a few years since I was injured playing football.  But the injury in this game made me realize that that I was in fact getting older. I was on defense playing safety.  A pass came my way.  I jumped to defend the ball, got my foot clipped and landed on a part of my body that I didn’t know I had: my tailbone.  Never knew that it could be so painful. 

So the following Monday I go to work still sore from the fall.  My manager walks up to me and says, “Hey Randy you look like you’re really dragging ass today. You feeling alright?” I say to him, “Lou, I AM dragging ass today.  I’m 35 years old and for the first time in my life I can actually feel my ass in my pants as I walk.” Lou had a good laugh and then told me he had to talk me later. I said fine.

That afternoon Lou asks me to come to the office.  We sit down and he says, “Hey Randy.  Do you know why 35 is THE most important age in man’s life?”  I did not.  Lou says, “35 splits the difference between 20 and 50.  You see how fast you aged from 20 to 35. That’s how fast you age from 35 to 50.  It seems even faster since you’re getting older. Whatever you wanna be in life you have to be working on it by now.” I had never heard that before,  but it stuck in my brain from that day forward. 

Many years have passed since I was 35.  A few more have passed since I was 50.  But you know what?  I still feel the same even though the mirror is a constant reminder of the years gone by. Reasonably healthy.  Reasonably happy.  Hopefully a little wiser. But it IS football season. Maybe, just maybe, I have ONE more Turkey Bowl game left.

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