This Pirate Looks at 50
Yes…I borrowed that line from Jimmy Buffett and yes I turned 50 this week. How did this happen? It seems just yesterday I was in school, sitting on the back porch with my buds listening to Buffett’s double album “You Had To Be There”, Live from the Fox Theater in Atlanta. I was a huge Parrot head back then and knew every line to every song he sang. Actually I was pretty obnoxious unless you liked him to. Like most of my favorite music, it reminds me of a time in my life when I was younger and little to worry about other than school and what I was going to do when my parent got my grades.
Buffett also has a song where he sings, “years grow shorter not longer, the more you’ve been on your own....” that I have sang a long to for years with little understanding of what he meant. Now I know with ultimate clarity, that truer words have never been spoken (or sung). Back in the day, it seemed that school would last forever, now Will has finished his freshman year in a flash and college will be over for him before we know it. I had grand visions of hanging out at the frat house with his brothers, telling stories and having a cold beverage. In reality, I would be that creepy old guy that’s hanging around trying to relive those glory days, all the while everyone is thinking, “dude needs to get a life”.
At this point, some days seem to drag on, while the years are flying by at an accelerating pace and to try and understand why is a fool’s errand. These first 50 years have been a roller coaster ride to say the least and feel pretty certain that’s what the next 50 have in store for me as well. I can’t say I’m any smarter, but the head winds of life have made me a wiser man. Why someone didn't stop me and tell me of the mistakes I was making in my younger years, but I suppose I wouldn't have listened and had to learn for myself the lessons of life and which paths I must take.
I wish I could tell you that I’m taking this turning 50 thing all in and enjoying this historic personal milestone, but I'm not sure how I feel about it all just yet. I joke with my friends that, “I’m not old enough to be an adult”, but I guess I am after all, have been all along, but just didn’t want to admit to it. Margaret rolls her eyes at me because she says I look in the mirror and still see 1987…and I do. Ha! I guess that’s what makes this 50-year-old pirate think he is still young. Here’s to the next 50! “I’m gonna plow in straight ahead come what may”. (JB-Cowboy in the Jungle -1978)
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