Ladies and gentlemen, the captain has just turned off the TOO MUCH INFORMATION filter and would like to warn you that what you are about to read is not going to be pretty.
I'm 35. I'm 35 for one more week and the gravity of 36 is beginning to pull things in the wrong direction. The hair on my head has statred its migration to my upper and middle back. I have told the girl who cuts my hair (less frequently than she used to I might add) that when the flesh yarmulke becomes the focal point of my dome, she needs to just pull out the clippers without warning and just shave my head. This started out as a joke but I fear that the day when it becomes a reality is much closer than I had anticipated.
I remember being a strong 16 year old kid painting the trim on my Mom's friend's house. With one foot on the roof the ladder slipped out from under me and SPLAT! Flat on my back on the driveway from about 10 feet up. I remember laying there for a moment wondering if I was dead or if I had actually just defied the laws of physics. Nothing hurt, nothing seemed out of place. I slowly rose to my feet, checked to see if there was blood pouring from any of my orifices.... Nope, all good. I looked at the pavement on the driveway and asked it, "Are you ok?" I was unstoppable and it was awesome.
At 35, I wake up in the morning to the screaming of a stiff lower back that takes at least 30 minutes to cooperate. My Achilles tendons, the ones that are supposed to give me the spring in my step act like bungy coards that are stretched to their limits and leave me walking like Frankenstein down the stairs to get the kid off to school.
At 35 my eyelids are starting to hang over themselves to the point where I can see them in my line of vision. They are drooping from the top down like a pair of socks that have lost their elastic.
At 35, you start to remember all of the little comments you used to hear your grandparents make about their age and you begin to realize that these comments are not too far away from coming out of your mouth too. Some may say that they age like a fine wine and to them I communicate the only sign language that I can remember. I tend to be aging like a fine cheese. No, not a sharp cheddar or muenster or even a tasty brie. No, I am aging like one of those Danish cheeses that you can smell from a mile away. It stinks to think about not being unstoppable anymore. The time has come to bid a fond farewell to the greatness of my younger years. Now, I will take things just a little slower and maybe see more of life instead of rushing through with reckless abandon. I know what you're thinking. 36 is not old, and you're right, but 36 is older than I want to be. There is no evidence of the kid who used to live in this body and I think that is where the struggle lies.
So, at 35 and 358 days I come to grips with the fact that there is nothing that I can do to stop the decomposition of my youth, so I might as well look in the mirror, point and laugh at the guy I see and keep on keepin' on.