Folks, by the time you read this, I’ll have turned 50. If you haven’t mailed my present yet, don’t panic, there’s plenty of time, I’ll wait.
Speaking of time, there are now more years behind me than there are left in front of me, but the thing is, I don’t feel old.
Possibly because, like most men, I’m still mentally 24-ish, and am often surprised by my aging body’s reluctance to do something most 24 year olds can do, like touch my toes or play beach cricket, without quite a lot of stretching and warming up first.
Yet, according to my birth certificate, creaky knees, grey hair, adult children and brutally honest granddaughter, I am old.
Still, after a youth spent playing contact sports and mimicking Evel Knievel, followed by teenage hot-headedness behind the wheel of numerous cars, plus drinking contests that have left parts of my brain in permanently sozzled limbo, and years spent working shifts in heavy industry, I’m pretty fortunate to have made it this far.
Luckily, it also turned out that Nostradamus’ prophecies were completely wrong, World War Three didn’t happen (yet), Ronnie Raygun didn’t press ‘The Button’, numerous asteroids missed our planet, and the much advertised Armageddon failed to materialise (and, disappointingly, so did hover boards, personal robot slaves and flying cars).
So now it’s onwards to 60, while doing the minimum amount of exercise necessary to counter the effects of my addiction to chocolate, beer and potato chips… actually, hold that thought, I’ve got to duck out to the kitchen.
If I crack 60, then I’ll grit the remaining teeth in my head and struggle up the steepening grade to 70. But, that’s years away, so I’ve got plenty of time to enjoy myself before I have to worry about getting really old; hopefully.