Sunday, November 23, 2008

You have to get cold, and you have to get wet, too.

One of the oddest moments I've had this year had to do with my self-impression. I see myself as a self-confident, left-of-center, sarcastic, thoughtful person. I like to have the last word. (I also find people who share this trait to be rude). Throw in a sense of humor and some self-deprecation. I also see myself as young-in-spirit.

It is this last characteristic that has me puzzled. A good friend gave me a book to read in which there were 2 main characters. An older, wiser adventurer and his young cocky whippersnapper protegé. I saw myself as the young person, my friend as the older gentleman. My friend had the same thoughts, but in reverse! We both saw ourselves as the young person. Perhaps this is true on a grander scale. Do we tend to see ourselves as a lot younger in sprit than we really are?

If you want to catch beasts you don't see everyday,
You have to out-of-the-way,
You have to go places no others can get to.
You have to get cold, and you have to get wet, too.
Dr. Seuss

So, am I young in spirit or delusional. Most likely it is a combination of the two. But now I am interested. What makes me feel that I haven't cratered yet and still have some loose joints?

I am trying to simplify my life...not just the daily tasks, but the avenues that my brain spends time pondering. If you asked my kids, they'd say that I was getting as old as dirt and that my habits are set in stone. No defense there. But I have been making some fundamental changes in my life and in my head. We all tend to have a set opinion of those close to us and it is difficult to get someone to look at you with 'fresh' eyes.

In the past five years, I have worked at becoming a much nicer person. I have taken up a number of sports from scratch and been involved with new groups of people. I am retiring from my career to force myself to do something else with my life.

At the least, I must be adventurous.

You didn't stop playing games because you got old...
You got old because you stopped playing games

My mother once said that being 60 was the best year of her life. The kids are grown up and gone, the body is still generally healthy, and you have time to work out some things in your head.

Am I young-in-spirit? Who knows. The fact that I think I am doesn't mean much. Most people feel that way.

I'll stick this thought in my craw for the next few months and see what shakes out. Could be the start of a New Year's Resolution.

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