5 Things I've Learned at 41
Life reflections a day after my 41st birthday
- •Now I Exercise to Not DieI used to exercise to get laid. Then I got married, had a child, turned 40 and my doctor told me if I don't exercise I'll die. "Die!" You hipsters have Gatorade, I have death propelling my lumbering limbs across the sidewalk as I jog like a beached manatee in dad sneakers. All you gorgeous Lululemon-clad beauties complain about fit spin instructors shouting at you - well I have the Grim fucking Reaper whispering "tick tock fatty" in my soul's ear.
- •I Have One Hair Style - BaldingThere was a time I spent 45 minutes in Hair Cuttery waiting rooms thumbing through style binders as thick as the Old Testament, contemplating what I wanted for the thick, lion's mane atop my head. Now I sit down, get black bibbed and spun around so I can look into the eyes of dying Anikan Skywalker in Return of the Jedi. A trim here, snip there and soon I look slightly better than before. Like when you run old wiper blades over a dirty, bug gutty windshield. Now I need blinders, not binders.
- •Sex is Like El NiñoSex in your 20s & 30s is spontaneous, passionate, and often fueled by alcohol, drugs and exotic vacations. By 40, sex is the equivalent of a rare weather condition that requires so many elements in place to even exist. You need "the kids are gone" front from the north to merg with the "we're all caught up on Netflix" system from the south, that then collides with a "we're actually not too full and tired from dinner" which typically ends with some light drizzle and much needed sleep.
- •I Should Have Driven Slower to Avoid a Midlife CrisisI realized, at some point, youth had floored the petal during all the drinks, cigarettes, loud bars, concerts, late night burritos, faceless hookups, and hungover brunches. And now the car is out of gas in a quiet, suburban street in front of a house I call home. And as the final moments of red gold reflect off my lawn I realize a midlife crisis is really just the solemn recognition that we often drive too fast and too hard to enjoy the carefree, spontaneity we eventually lose.
- •Econo Lodge ParentingBeing a parent is like running a hotel that your own children posted a one star Yelp review for. We do your best to house them, feed them, make them comfortable, but each day is filled with new complaints. But what they give in return is more than one could ever imagine - from euphoric pride to frustration to infinite love and a greater sense of purpose. They remind us of ourselves yet we hope they negotiate life even better. We root, pray and keep the hotel open for them. And sometimes we jog.