Tuesday, May 25, 2010

An ode to growing older, yet another year

It’s just a few days from my 56th birthday and I feeling rather introspective.

The reasons are many.

I don’t believe I’ve succumbed to middle age craziness, but I do realize that certain things in my life and personality have changed.

Now I’m very lucky – now that’s the dog! My wife of 31 years still likes me. Loving someone is a lot tougher in the long run if you don’t actually like the person to whom you’re married. My foster daughter and my granddaughter care for me, as does my nephew Douglas. My other nephews, although fine young men and I never really much of a chance to build a relationship.

I’ve got a good relationship with my brother.

I’m gainfully employed doing something I like and, despite what some co-workers think, I’m actually good at – oops, dangled my participle. Our credit card debt is low. We’re paying the bills more or less on time. I’m appreciative of the blessings in our life.

But I do have some issues.

I have a decreasing tolerance for unnecessary bullshit. Now let’s face it everyone faces necessary bullshit at work and in the family – the situations in which you close your eyes, grit your teeth and move on because you have to. As a younger man, I always took it on the chin, but now I’m more apt to sift through the unnecessary and necessary and say something.

My tolerance is waning. The following thoughts frequently run through my mind:

Why do you insist on mistreating animals? Why play that damned music so loud I can feel it? Why throw your bag of fast food wrappers on the street? Why look me in the face and lie and know that I realize you’re lying? Why have children when you can’t care for them?

Why do you invoke Christ’s name, but behave as if you’ve never read the Bible? Why do you think supporting hate is something He would have approved of? Killing in His name is acceptable?

Why do so many people squander the life and opportunities they’ve been given? Why do people who are young really and truly believe that youth trumps age and experience?

Why do so many of the people in power actually do something to help make things better rather than support the corporate status quo?

Now the last 31 years of my life have gone by in a frickin’ flash and time is accelerating. I can feel it every week getting just a bit faster.

I’ve got stuff to do. Books to write. Places to see. Seegars to smoke. Wild Turkey to think about drinking. Movies to enjoy. Friends to cherish. Every minute of my life counts more and more and more.

That’s why at age 56 – almost – I just can’t stand the petty crap I’m forced to wade through on a daily basis.

Perhaps I do have some sort of middle-aged craziness. Ah well, I plan to have a very large piece of cake, a beer and a smoke on May 29th and screw ‘em.

1 comment:

Kim said...

Mikey ... you are a treasure to all of us that love you & we believe that your own particular brand of crisis suits you just fine. As someone who's known you for not quite 1/2 of your life (how scary is that!!!!) I can honestly say that I like the "unfettered" Mike. So - from here to there (Ware, you say) & back again --- don't worry about editing who you are or what you think/say/write ~ the cats, dog & fish agree .... Happy Birthday big guy!