"It's Just a Number: Age 50"
June 16, 2009
I am turning 50 years old this year -
aaaagggghhhhh!!!! I don't feel 50. I
still feel 30 - maybe 25. My wife says I
think like a 15 year old. But I
50 - How can this
be! I remember my Dad turning 50 - and
he was an old fart by 50! Am I an old
fart? Am I a middle-aged fart? I feel old
in many ways: I noticed that I keep
having to turn the TV volume up - often
until my son is covering his ears. I
find that I occasionally answer my cell
phone because I think it is vibrating -
only to find out my phone is not
vibrating - I have gas: "Hello - this is
your stomach calling. No more Mexican
food!". Sometimes, I walk into a room
and I can't remember why I went in there
- and sometimes it's the bath room.
But am I really all that different than
I was when I was 25? Let's go to
Below is the chart of my daily thoughts
when I was a "mere" quarter of a century
As you can see - I thought of Sex 40% of the
time. Drinking 30% of the time. Sleep 10% of the time. Work 10% of the time. And
about More Sex 10% of the time. I was your fairly typical social, horny 25 year
old. But was I happier then? Well, one way to tell is to look at my daily
thoughts at age 50. So here you go...
I think of Sleep 20% of
the time. Kids 20% of the time. Money 15% of the time. Work 10% of the time.
Loss of hair 9% of the time. Gain of Hair in Weird Places 9% of the time.
Regularity 5% of the time. Sex 2% of the time. And More Sleep 10% of the time.
Yes, sleep has replaced sex as the one thing I covet more on a daily basis. When
you have kids there is simply NOT enough time for sleep. How do I know this is
true: Nowadays when my wife tells me she's a little "frisky", my first thought
is: "Maybe after a nap". When I say to my wife - "Hey baby, you want
to sleep with me?" I really mean sleep. Regularity has also become a daily concern for me -
nobody warns you about this when you are young! Enjoy those regular, firm days
while you have them, young folks - it won't last! Finally, there is the hair
thing. Sure you lose hair, but the weird part is your total amount of hair stays
constant. How? Any hair you lose off the top of your head will show up
somewhere: Your nose. Your ears. Your back. Or eyebrows that grow like antenna.
Men turn into Chia Pets after 40.
So is 50 better or worse than 25? It's not better or worse.
It's just a number. It doesn't define you any more or less than your height or
weight or cholesterol level or credit score. In the Information Age, we are all
a collection of data - number upon number upon number. That huge set of data describes each of us. Our
unique "data" sets
us apart from the next person's "data". No ONE number can
describe any of us. It's just one number of many, many numbers. And as any expert in the Information
Age can tell you: "It's not the data that matters. It's what you do with the
data that matters".
There will be more chapters of "It's Just a
Number" to come...
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