Mark D. Roberts

Last week I had a momentous birthday. Most people would say that I turned 50. I’ve actually been saying that I just entered my sixth decade. Might as well milk getting older for all it’s worth.
On the day of my birthday, I thought I’d celebrate in the late afternoon by going on a run in one of my favorite locations, Crystal Cove State Park. This park includes three miles of unspoiled beaches, as well as some pristine canyons. I set out on a four-mile run along the beach and back.
It was a beautiful afternoon as I trotted along. I don’t run as often or a quickly as I once did. My knees have their limits, after all. Nevertheless, I felt pretty good about myself for being able to jog at all at 50 years old.
As I got to the end of my run, I slowed to a walk. The older I get, the more I’ve discovered that cooling down after exercise helps minimize pain. While I was ambling along, I stopped to talk with a young man riding in some sort of golf cart. We chatted about the weather and who knows what else. Finally the man asked me, “Say, what have you been doing?”
“Oh, I went on a little run down the beach for a couple of miles and then back,” I answered, feeling slightly smug.
“Wow!” he said, “that’s great for a guy of your age!”
Hey, I wondered to myself, do I now have some invisible sign that reads “Old guy” or something like that. At my age? Nobody’s ever said anything like that to me before.
Well, actually I once had something happen to me that was even worse. Stay tuned . . . .

Join the Discussion
comments powered by Disqus