You’re as old as you feel.

Well that’s a relief because after the trials and tribulations of the last month, carbon dating would suggest a conservative estimate of about a 1000 years. It’s my birthday you see and the passing of time is definitely beginning to affect hair (almost gone), recovery periods (measured with a calendar) and neurosis’s (measured with a calculator).

Turning 38 last year was a bit of a wrench but at least it was just possible to deny impending middle age. 38 can be cheekily defined as mid to late thirties” but at 39, you just can’t keep living the lie. The best I’ve come up with is not quite 40” and not dead yet”

I don’t expect to have to go through this emotional hand wringing once the big four o arrives since I’ll be deep into therapy. However I did consider one last forlorn effort to attain a high level of fitness, a midriff that lacked a convex bulge and a diet that doesn’t consider peanuts and lager to contain all the essential food groups2.

But it’s become clear that even if this made me live longer, it’d make me miserable now, and I’d probably not thank myself forty years later. I’ve been a middle aged cynic ranting impotently at the world since the age of about twenty so realistically an octanarian version of Al is not somebody even I’d want to spend any time with.

I also spent a mad minute wondering how long my increasingly battered frame should be subjected to mountain bikes, or more specifically what happens when you crash mountain bikes. But then as some cleverer and yet more cheesy than I once said getting old is mandatory, growing old is optional

So I’ll rage against the dying of the light a while longer. With a bag of crisps and a nice cold lager. And possibly some slippers.

8 thoughts on “You’re as old as you feel.

  1. Grahame

    Happy birthday, young man.

    I always remember what my Grandad told a six year old me when I asked what it’s like getting old, “Grahame, getting old is horrible. But it’s a lot better than the alternative.”

    Well, so far it’s not too bad.

    Next month will see my 40th. Where will I be “celebrating”? On a feckin’ aeroplane. Bah!

  2. Alex

    That makes the Sinclair thing looks almost sensible and mainstream. I’m considering a nice pair of stabilisers the way my riding has been going lately.

  3. James D

    Happy Birthday mate!! Bags of crisps & cold lager are fine, just make sure they’re after a good ride 🙂

  4. Andy

    Happy Birthday Old Timer!

    We considered organising a collection for a BUPA season ticket, and then decided that you’d probably prefer the equivalent value in beer!

    You can start collecting next time we’re in the pub together and you’re not riding – I’ve heard you’re a little unsteady – it comes with age 🙂


  5. Alex

    Thanks all for your kind words. Just so we understand each other, I’m talking about my real friend(s) who offered proper solace and understanding.

    Although I’m liking the treadmill bike Robert. In a “can someone else get one to give us old people a laugh” kind of way 🙂

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