Tuesday, September 22, 2009

A 33 year-Old Problem

I wrote a post on my birthday about 33 being the perfect age. That I was right in the middle of everything and right where I needed and wanted to be.

What a moron.

Sure there have been some fun times, although maybe not as unadulterated as years past. I still have that freedom to do and go whatever I want, but it's starting to feel different. I realize that I am usually the oldest person doing whatever I'm doing at any point in time. This isn't really so bad, because let's face it, I'm not that old, but it can lead to some trouble.

The other day, playing kickball(!), I was sprinting from third to home on a ball that was eventually caught anyway and somehow pulled something in my foot (Remarkably similar to an injury I suffered while playing softball a couple years ago). I shook it off as one of those things, and the next day I awakened to searing pain that I haven't felt since I split my head open when I was nine, and at least then I got a Transformer. Let me stress again that I was playing KICKBALL, a game that I should probably be watching my children play at this point in my life.

The very next day, I was trying to tough it out, but it was bad enough that I got this e-mail from my friend, "Hey, gimpy, Want to go to the bazaar at 11?" So it was bad enough that I got called "gimpy." the bazaar was being put on by BU for some charitable cause, but I really only went to see if there was something I could maybe sell on eBay for fun and profit.

While at this bazaar, with my foot feeling like it was on fire, I bought my first tennis racquet. It may seem silly for a man who can't physically play tennis (in my condition, or ever, really) to make such a purchase, but I had been meaning to buy a cheap one somewhere, as my friend recently asked me if I wanted to give it a try. I'm sure it's fine to pick up tennis at 33. I assume it's pretty much just like Wii Tennis, right?

Anyway, the woman from whom I bought the racquet seemed delighted, giving me two bucks off the ticketed price and even taking my picture with it. The racquet was in excellent shape, in fact, and she said she would not be selling it if the injuries hadn't begun piling up. I had to sympathize. She was definitely older than me, but probably not as much as I thought, or hoped, and here she was giving up a hobby that she enjoyed because she simply could not do it any longer. This, I realized, was not something I am ready to do just yet.

I'm not feeling any great sense of urgency just yet, but I am feeling the need to do something different with myself. Despite being in probably the best shape of my life (which isn't saying much), and probably better shape than most 33 year-olds in the U.S., I feel like time is running out for me to do a lot of things, or at least for my participation in sports usually enjoyed by children.

The thing is, I do not sense any great changes coming, because I don't know what those changes could possibly be. The obvious answer would be the company of a woman, but that's not something you walk to the store and buy. So what that is in my control can I actually do? In modern society, with the economy being what it is, let's face it, the answer is very little.

So, merrily we roll, and hobble, along.

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