Friday, January 20, 2012

One Up

Forty three feels, on the surface of it, to be a singularly unremarkable number of years to have been alive.

Forty?  A big deal.  At forty, you are officially Not Young, no matter how desperately our youth-addled culture wants to push that boundary further and further into the recesses of what used to be called middle age.  This was the year I began wearing vests, brown corduroy pants, and bright-white old-man New Balance sneakers with pride.

Forty one?  It's a year over forty, that year that nails you into your forty-ness.   That counts for something.

Forty two?  It's the Hitchhikers Guide Meaning of Life year, and that also counts for something.

But Forty Three?  I'm at a loss to see where there's anything to it.  I'm just one year older than I was before.  The age rolls in like a rental Chrysler Sebring, utterly unremarkable but getting the job done.

As a day, it's been a good one.   My eldest son presented me with a hand-drawn framed Skyrim logo for my office, reflecting our shared enjoyment of that game.  My youngest made me a mutant birthday dirge in Garageband, culminating in his altered booming voice counting off all 43 years.  In the evening, family gathered from all around for beer and wine and delivery Chinese food.   Nothing epic.  Just basic goodness.

Perhaps that's the point of it.  You kick back, look at the day, and realize that you're smack dead center in the middle of your probable lifespan.  You're not a bazillionaire.  You're not world famous.  You are where you are.  And if you can be cool with it, well, then that's where you need to be.

Further up and further in!