Friday, September 9, 2011

Half a century, Plus one

Today (at this very moment as I type, on the evening of Sept 8th 2011) I am officially still Fifty years old.

Half a century.

I head into work in about half an hour for my final 'graveyard' shift (11pm to 6am). I am being shifted to 'days' starting with Saturday morning (I will be working 7 days a week for the duration of my stay here in Sunnyvale). I drive in tonight as a 50 year old, and I will return tomorrow morning as a 51 year old. I have ALL of tomorrow (Friday, my official birthday) off. I plan on doing my FAVORITE mountain bike ride in celebration of making it this far: Purisima Creek Redwoods open space preserve. The basic plan is I get off work and come back to the hotel, have a quick breakfast, grab a few hours of sleep, then get up and get moving. I will need to stay up tomorrow afternoon/evening so I can HOPEFULLY get a good nights sleep for my shifting back to the world of the that I am almost adjusted to working nights.

Anyway, I have thought about this long and hard about this, and here are some gems of wisdom that I have learned in my 50 years that I feel are some kind of universal truths, and I'd like to share them with yo.

- Almost nothing is as easy as it looks.

- It can ALWAYS be worse.

 - The more people you assign to help solve a problem slows down the process to a degree multiplied by the number of people assigned  (I have no actual proof whatsoever on this one, it just seems to play out that way).

- You never feel your age.

Let me elaborate on that last one: I have found that when I am feeling younger than my years, soon after that I will have done something stupid and will quickly feel much older. And going along with that one, there is this next one:

- There is an infinite number of stupid things you can do.

 And finally, my favorite, which I have never yet seen dis-proven:

- It's far easier to ask for forgiveness than permission.
(I don't know who said this first, I've heard it credited to Navy Admiral Grace Hopper, but whoever said it first had an amazing grasp on bureaucracy).

OK, there you have tidbits of truths I still can't wrap my brain around the fact that I'm that old, let-alone that in a few hours that will be no longer true and I will be one year OLDER than that.

And now, I will stop typing, finish my coffee and get to work. When I continue I will be OFFICIALLY another year older.


And I'm back...yes, it's me...the OLD guy. It's actually almost exactly 24 hours later from the earlier typing. I had a pretty great day today overall...had an awesome breakfast (the best Belgian Waffle I've ever had) a few hours of sleep, then did my ride. The weather was PERFECT...low 80's at the top (where I parked) and down to 62 deg 1800 feet down at the bottom. I did the fun singletrack climb twice, and the awesome middle-track downhill just once. The only downer was when I got to the top the 2nd time I reached into my pocket to put my special photocramatic riding sunglasses back on. And they were gone. Fell out somewhere on that 4 mile climb, and I didn't have enough water to go down and look for them (as I  would still HAVE to climb back up to to go home). Best I can do is go back tomorrow (darn it!) and take that same trail down, and maybe by some lucky measure of fate they will be lying there unbroken. Not sure how my odds are on that, being as tomorrow is Saturday, and I can't get there until the afternoon...I'd say slim. That trail will likely have have a lot of hikers and bikers on it before I get there. But I have to try.

The ONLY thing that I can think of missing from my great day was being with Jeannie and the babies.

And so. Another birthday comes to an end. Had a pint of a very tasty cask-ale and an order of Hot wings at a local microbrew after my ride...that was my big birthday dinner. Can't was pretty tasty.
And with that, I will sign off. Hope everybody has a great weekend! Feel free to toss YOUR hard-earned words of wisdom in the comments...maybe we can compile a book...or a pamphlet, or most likely a small brochure.


1 comment:

  1. Haha, I can testify to number 3! AND number 4!

    Sorry about your glasses-- it is SO hard to replace a favorite pair. Hope you can find them. I just bought a pair of bifocal sunglasses (safety glasses, actually) to wear when riding.

    Well, take solace in this -- you are STILL not as old as I. And I am in shock from realizing that my oldest brother is almost 70! When did this happen?!

    Time to settle in for some great racing at the gran prix of Montreal, if I can find a livestream. (It was a super race on Friday, which Gilbert won just ahead of
    a battling Gesink) Afterward, if it is not storming (we just had a little thunderboomer pass but the sun is out now) I will get in a run or a little ride.

    Then it is three 12 hours shift in a row. I will be dead after that. Thank goodness no more night shifts for me. Way back when I had to rotate shifts every 2 weeks -- even in my 20's, that nearly killed me! I could never adapt and never slept for more than an hour at a time in the daytime.