QOTD – What’s My Age Again?


There are constant remind that I am no longer in my twenties: the reflection in the mirror every time the stylist wets my hair before a cut (way more forehead than necessary), the pops in the shoulders, knees, and elbows, the not getting carded for alcohol at most places, and the fact that most of my students were born when I was in high school (and some of their parents are my age).

The reminders that I am no longer in college are more frequent: the all-day hangovers, the fact that I have no desire to drink copiously for multiple days in a row (and rarely even one), eating actual meals instead of microwaved pizza, and the transition of the word party from a verb to a noun.

This weekend I had a nice reminder that I might not be an adult either.

My wife and I are avid Oregon Ducks fans.  We had been planning on going to watch them play in Colorado on October 5th… you know, cause Boulder is so close to Iowa.  During the planning, I realized she had never been to a game in Autzen and one of the friends we were planning on meeting couldn’t go anyway.  With all this new data, we decided to plan a trip to Eugene to watch a home game.

The game: Saturday, 9/28 versus California.  Perfect.  Our flight was slightly inconvenient for travel, but great for our work schedules.  We would leave Des Moines after work, 6 something flight, and we would arrive in Portland at midnight.  We would leave Portland at 7am Sunday and be back by midafternoon (3 of the clock) and have plenty of time to have a good work day Monday.

And then the kickoff got moved to 7:30 pm Saturday night.

And then the weather report came in.

Instead of taking the time to tell you how well we planned for these new contingencies, let me tell you how the day(s) went.

Airplane delays, which are on par with death and taxes, caused us to get to bed Friday night in Beaverton (a Portland suburb for the uninitiated) at 2:30am.  We woke up Saturday morning at 7:30 and had a nice breakfast with some friends and their kids.  At 10 o’clock we picked up our third travelling companion who had flown in from Texas and stayed with his mom in Portland the night before and headed down to Eugene to have lunch with my parents and his dad.

We had lunch, killed some time, enjoyed some conversation, talked about how nice the weather was considering the weather report that suggested the remnants of a typhoon were heading our way and the heavy rains would start around 7.

Then we tailgated and marveled how it was cool, but not cold while wearing T-Shirts and jerseys.  (It should probably be noted this tailgating included five people and three beers consumed)

As if scripted, at 7:00 the rain really came in proper.

By the 7:30 kickoff it was easy to tell this would be a game where you would have to stand or sit the entire time or you would be splashing in and out of a puddle.

I was extremely thankful I had purchased a hoodie to keep me warm under my thin rain jacket.  The receiver gloves were a nice touch, too. The jeans and tennis shoes, on the other hand, were drenched.  It was before halftime that the water had leaked through the jacket’s neck hole and the sweatshirt had transformed into 20 pounds of dampness.  The shirtless guys in the student section had left, and most of the people who remained were the adults in their rain gear or fishing waders.

Most people bring dry clothes when they go snowboarding, skiing, or to stand in a monsoon, right?

I drove back to Portland pantsless and barefoot.

Most people create a plan of egress, especially when on a tight time schedule with a very early flight, right?

We realized we had a passenger who needed to be dropped off 35 minutes away from where we had planned to sleep.

By 2:40 in the morning we had stopped to grab our bags, dropped off our passenger, and began to painfully realize we had only had five hours of sleep in the last thirty plus.  A hotel would be a great idea, right?

We slept in our rental car in the parking garage of the Portland Airport for two hours.  I walked barefooted into the airport and bought a $10 pair of socks to put on to shield my (still mostly numb) feet from my (now only “mostly damp”) shoes.

One thing I’ve learned – it would suck to be homeless… especially without taking a lot of heavy drugs or being too drunk to realize what’s going in.

One thing I can’t stop thinking –

“What is this? What are we doing? What in God’s name are we doing?”


“Our lives! What kind of lives are these? We’re like children. We’re not men.”

“No we’re not. We’re not men.”

(George Costanza & Jerry Seinfeld in “The Engagement”)

There are plenty of quotes and expressions telling us age is a state of mind, not a number or that being an adult (or a man) is not determined by the number of days you’ve lived, but how you’ve lived them, etc. etc. etc.

We’ve all heard the expressions about being a child in a man’s body or just being a “big kid”, etc. etc. etc.

We’ve all met someone who seems to have been born in the wrong decade.

Do you need a Murtaugh list (I’m too old for this $#@!) or an Old Man list (you are not old enough to go to bed before 8)?

QOTD How old are you really? (not according to the year you were born, according to your “you”)

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