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March 01, 2004

Before I Get Old

I’ve sometimes wondered if Pete Townshend ever regretted writing those lyrics in My Generation, “Hope I die before I get old.” Growing up in Richardson Texas in the late 60’s and early 70’s they made sense to me – they still do. But with close to fifty years of perspective on life, I’ve concluded that “old” is a state of mind. I look at my father-in-law, Irving, and see a man well into his 70’s who is just as young and fun loving as I’ve always been. He’s had too much fun in retirement to even think about getting old. Oh sure, he’s lost a step or two and I could probably beat him in racquetball now (but only just barely). Golf and his grandchildren keep the fires stoked inside of him, and there’s too much to do now for him to consider stopping.

I started to consider today what it would take for me to prevent growing old. I’ve got a pretty comfortable existence here in Flower Mound, but it’s a bit dull and not fulfilling in the least. So I started a list of things that would be neat to accomplish before I grow old. Some are attainable but some probably aren’t.

  1. Ski a black diamond slope at least once in my life. If it doesn’t kill me, I will be able to say “been there, done that, got the T-shirt.”

  2. Get my scuba certification and start joining Janie and Jaleh in all the fun.

  3. Travel to Greece. There’s no special significance to that desire other than I’ve always thought that it would be a fun place to visit.

  4. Drive a Top Fuel dragster at least 250 mph in the quarter mile. OK, this one is one that’s probably on the “not attainable” list. I’d settle for a couple of hot laps at the Texas Motor Speedway.

  5. Hike to the summit of Mauna Loa and witness some extraordinary sunrises and sunsets.

  6. Learn open water sailing and navigation.

  7. Travel to a foreign country for a while and do mission work.

  8. Make a meaningful difference in someone’s life that I’m not related to.

  9. Find contentment in life, even in spite of its disappointments and sorrows.

Well, this is just the first draft – I’m sure that I can come up with more as I contemplate the topic. Yes, most of it is self-centered, and I really need to work on those “giving to others” activities. But it’s a start…

Posted by mjwoods at March 1, 2004 12:34 AM

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