20 September 2016


So I've hit that number today
There's another birthday here in the Den today and that birthday is mine. It just happens to be one of those significant milestone birthdays, too. Today, I celebrate fifty years of darkening the door of this wonderful thing we call life.

I like what Victor Hugo said about being 50. He said "Forty is the old age of youth; fifty is the youth of old age." Turning 50 does not mean that I am suddenly middle-aged. That ship sailed when I turned 41. Per the good people at the U. S. Social Security Administration and their super fun Life Expectancy Calendar (have fun playing with that one!), I am expected to live to 82.2 years old. So I am nearly a decade into my middle-agedness, which for my children means at least three more long decades of dealing with me. Buckle up, you three! It's only going to get worse. You have been warned.

Here's some fun facts, courtesy of the Interweb's truth sayer Wikipedia, about 50:

  • 50 is the atomic number of tin (as a sciencephobe, this means nothing to me)
  • 50 is the number of Gates of Wisdom and Gates of Impurity in Kaballah. I wonder about the connection between wisdom and impurity now.
  • 50 is the number of U. S. states. No, really, there are only 50 states. It is not 51 (sorry Washington DC or Puerto Rico).
  • 50 is the number of the retired jersey of San Antonio Spurs Hall of Famer, David "The Admiral" Robinson.
  • 50 is the number of rings required to transform Sonic to his super form in the "Sonic the Hedgehog" game. Given my extensive (and by extensive I mean non-existent) history as a gamer, this another one that means nothing to me.
Thanks to the great Paul Simon, we know that there are "50 Ways to Leave Your Lover."

Thanks to Keanu Reeves in his tour-de-force role from the 1990's cinematic masterpiece "Speed," which in itself is a gift that just keeps on giving, and Dennis Hopper's creative bomb-making skills, we know that 50 was the danger zone. Remember if that bus went slower than 50 MPH, it was goodbye Sandra Bullock and Cameron from "Ferris Bueller's Day Off."

I'm excited to hit this milestone. I'd like to think it's going to give me an air of added maturity. In reality, it's brought me an invitation to join AARP and starting the countdown to this:

Yep, that delightful procedure is coming. It's one of the harsher realities of turning 50, as is this point made by the life of any party he must have attended, English author George Orwell. He said, "At age fifty, everyone has the face he deserves." Let that one sink in. If I now have the face I deserve, I shudder to think what else is coming my way in terms of what I deserve...

Clearly, 50 is going to be awesome. I'm a few hours into it and I'm already a fan. The first fifty years have been good, darn good. I think the 32.2 years that I have left are going to be darn good, too. Among other things, I want to see if there's any truth to this statement from T S Eliot:

The years between fifty and seventy are the hardest. You are always 
being asked to do things, and yet you are not decrepit enough to turn them down.

I'm 50. I'm not dead yet, so no need to toss me in the Wagon O' The Dead:


No comments: