THE MOMENT HAS ARRIVED!  I received input from a number of readers, friends, family members, and even the official medical consultant for Bobbing for Popcorn (okay, so it’s my doctor, but it makes us both sound way cooler) and the list of the FORTY THINGS I am challenged to complete by my FORTIETH BIRTHDAY has been compiled.  It equally pumps me up and terrifies me!  There are some really fun things that are going to be SO COOL and others that are scary as hell!  But that was the point, I guess.  So without further ado, in no particular order, here it is:

1. Eat a carolina reaper pepper

I’ve done hot challenges before, but never anything THIS hot!

2. Polar bear swim

I hate swimming.  I hate the cold.  This sounds perfect.

3. lose 40 pounds

This is probably the biggest challenge on the list but probably the most important one too.  Phew…this one is going to take some work!

4. go camping/Hiking

Believe it or not, there are a number of normal things on this list that I have never done.  This being one of them.

5. visit a legitimately haunted location

I’m not talking about local lore, or somebody’s uncle said he saw the curtains move once.  I’m talking a place one of those ghost hunter shows would go investigate.

6. finish writing a novel

Yeah, yeah, yeah.  I know.  I started writing this a long time ago.  What better way to light a fire under me to get the job done?

7. run a 5k

Oh sweet baby Jesus give me strength.

8. flip & sell a house

My wife and I have had a rental property for quite a while.  Time to channel my inner Bob Villa and fix it up and sell it to another family.

9. try bulletproof coffee & “cat poop” coffee

I love coffee…these frighten me.

10.  paintball

What better way to shoot your friends without anyone pressing charges?!!

11.  target shooting

I have never fired a gun.  I don’t believe I’ve ever actually held a real one in my life.  Judging by the fact that I usually need supervision when using scissors and I whimper at loud noises, I can’t see how this could go wrong.

12.  hug a llama

This might be the greatest thing I do in my life.

13.  go caroling

Seems a bit easy.  Maybe we’ll sing 80s hip hop mash-ups instead.

14.  grill day

If it isn’t grilled, we don’t eat it.  All day long.

15.  take a painting class

This one should be a piece of cake – I can draw hand turkeys like there’s no tomorrow!

16.  ride a horse

The poor horse probably wants me to lose the 40 pounds first…

17.  sing karaoke

I was in choirs all my life and was lucky enough to be allowed to sing solos.  I was a vocal music major for a semester and performed numerous musical numbers on stage…but I’ve always been freaked out by karaoke!  I don’t know why!  Terrifies me!

18.  learn basic guitar

I’m not looking to be the next Prince, but I just always wanted to strum along to a Bob Dylan or Johnny Cash tune.

19.  milk a cow

Some days you have to grab the bull by the horns, other days you have to grab the cow by the teats.  This is one of those days.

20.  participate in a flash mob

One reader suggested a kazoo performance…it’s got potential.

21.  make a 1/2 court basketball shot

NOTE: I suck at basketball.  It is one thing I am the worst at!  This could take a long time!

22.  hold a tarantula

The person who suggested this is no longer a friend of mine.

23.  go skiing

Again, something most people have done.  Not me.  Not even once!  I’ve never even been to anywhere while other people skied while I watched from a chalet!

24.  beat the original “Super Mario bros.”

The game that started a revolution has always escaped my nimble thumbs.  It’s time I take down Bowser and save that princess once and for all.

25.  go ice skating

Nope.  I put on skates once, dragged myself along the wall for about 20 feet, threw a tantrum, quit, and went home…I was probably 17…not one of my prouder moments.

26.  Create an animated short film

This one was just too intriguing not to try!

27.  sing the national anthem at a public event

Dear God please let me remember the words.

28.  act like a professional announcer for a youth sports team

I think this one would be a riot if the kids didn’t know I was going to do it!

29.  hit a home run out of a local ball park

I never played sports as a kid (I was too busy trying to beat that damn Mario Bros. game) so this is one of those thrills I’ve never experienced.

30.  snow golf

Now THIS ONE I have participated in before a few times.  However, to keep it on my list I think we’re going to need to play a full 18 holes.

31.  do a police ride-along

I have already contacted the police and was given permission to ride shotgun (maybe literally this time).  I have also informed the officer who will be hosting me that I reserve the right to sing the theme to “Cops” as many times as I want.

32.  perform at an open mic comedy club

Again, it’s strange.  I write comedy.  I perform in front of audiences all the time.  But this scares the crap out of me!

33.  get ordained

Bonus points if someone wants me to marry them!

34.  donate blood

I have a terrible phobia of needles…this could get very entertaining for you guys.

35.  meet a childhood idol

Could be tricky since most of them were cartoons…

36.  catch a big fish

I used to go fishing with many different members of my family all the time growing up.  However, while the lake we fished out of is full of walleyes, muskies, and bass, I only ever walked away with a couple sunfish and perch.  I can’t even tell stories about “the one that got away” because he never gave me a chance.  I want to catch “the big one!”

37.  Get a reading from a psychic

I’m super skeptical.  It’s going to take quite the reading to convince me that I’m not wasting my time with this one.  But I promise to keep an open mind and not to get too snarky when the spirits are visiting.

38.  audition for a movie or television show

Oh, why not?  Find an open audition and send in a video.  Who knows, I might be Man In Hat 2 in the 18th Mission: Impossible movie.  Dare to dream!

39.  help a beekeeper

I’m guessing these little guys are harder to milk than cows, but I’ll do my best to get the honey out.

40.  take a whirlwind trip to anywhere new

I’ve never done a lot of traveling, so the whole spontaneous jet-setting lifestyle is foreign to me.  I’ve never been farther west than Indianapolis.  Florida once and very few places north of there until you hit Pennsylvania.  As far as other countries go, Canada is it and I haven’t even been back there in over a decade.  So where should I rush off to on a whim?  Vegas?  London?  Hollywood?  Nambia?!!!  I’m going to hop in a car or on a plane, plant my feet on new ground (for me), snap a couple photos, and then head back home.

* * * * * * *

So that’s it!  My challenges for this year.  I will try to give you updates as weekly as possible (I have 12 extra Fridays that I can play with).  I am also going to challenge myself to get you guys AT LEAST 40 new Top Ten Tuesdays AND 40 new posts that are not Top Ten or 40 By 40 list related.  At least 120 new posts in 2018 just cuz I like ya!

So PLEASE, like, share, retweet, comment, and invite your friends to join in all the popcorny goodness!  And buckle up, this is going to be a busy year!

“Who says nothing is impossible. I’ve been doing nothing for years.” ~ Henny Youngman

Yearly Monarch

Birthdays are pretty awesome.  You basically get worshipped for doing absolutely nothing special whatsoever!  Take a look around you.  Everyone you know and everyone you don’t – EVERYONE, since the dawn of time, has one thing in common: they were born!

Now most of you probably don’t remember the day you were born, but I do and if you were anything like me, which you most definitely were, you did absolutely nothing to help.  The proof is in the pushing!  Our mothers wouldn’t need to push if we gave them any assistance in this process; we would just be sitting there when she woke up patiently playing with our bungee cord waiting for some breakfast.

Regardless of all the trouble we gave our moms when we were born, we still commemorate the day like Napoleon among throngs of much shorter French people.  Now… I LOVE going to bed – sleeping is awesome – I get giddy when I pull those covers up to my chin and hunker down into my fluffy pillow.  But that love is outweighed every year the night before my birthday when I will always stay awake for the sole purpose of watching the clock strike midnight.  Then I turn into something like this guy:


And then it’s on!  24 hours of “me-ness” begins.

Kids have it the best – they get those sweet theme parties.  Superheroes, princesses, dinosaurs, whatever they’re into – and the walls get adorned with decorations shaped like these things, and they’re plastered on all the cups and plates and tablecloths.  We need to bring this back for adults – true we’d have party themes like “awesome tax returns,” “afternoon naps,” and “Nicholas Sparks novels” (for some of the really lame, sappy adults who want to play Pin the Raindrops on the Lovelorn Guy and Spin the Bottle where at least one member of the couple dies after they kiss).  Things that serve no purpose 99% of the time become necessities for the birthday parties.  If you were to strap a cardboard cone to your head with a rubber band and go about your normal day, you would be subjected to a day full of second glances, confused looks, and pointing.  But if you wear these things at a birthday party, no one bats an eye – in fact, if you’re the only one NOT wearing one THEN you get ridiculed!  And no one begins picturing a home remodeling project with the hopes that their living room can be filled with balloons and streamers.  Try it – when your husband, wife, roommate, parents, or whoever is away, decorate with balloons and streamers all over the place and see what happens when they come home.  They’ll want to know what the party is for and get a camera ready for their expression when you tell them that you did all this “just because.”  They will be convinced that you’re defective.  But not if it’s your birthday – in fact, they will probably do this work for you!

Then, once your party space is decorated to your liking, a bunch of lauders (which you hand selected to attend) show up to bask in your glory.  They each bring an offering to you like the gods of yore, hoping that their trinkets please you.  To show your benevolence you feed them and offer them entertainment such as games, music, possibly even a court magician or jester!  Then members of your revelers bring forth a beautifully crafted figure of some happy creature and, because it is your day, you get to be the first to beat the creature with a stick until the artwork is destroyed and small gifts and confections (not as large as what are given to you, of course) rain down upon your subjects who, afterward, sit around you and give witness to the opening of your offerings so they can see all the things that are not theirs. Finally, you are brought a large, hand-crafted treat to gorge yourself on (after you have already gorged yourself on an already bountiful feast) and, because it is not worthy of consumption as it is, it is set on fire before it is presented to you!  BEHOLD YE THE FLAMING GLUTTONY!!!  Your subjects sing your anthem before you quell the blaze with your very breath, and then allowing your revelers to share in all of its sugary goodness. And, because you have set a time limit to their festivities, they begin to leave your kingdom and THEY thank YOU for allowing them to come worship you!

Yes, it is arguably the greatest day of the year.  Now that I’m grown up, I don’t get a theme party and a bunch of people coming over, but I do get to call the shots on simple things like dinner.  It’s almost like the Death Row last meal – they have to give you what you ask for.  If you want spaghetti and mashed potatoes, that’s what you’re getting.  Usually, I choose something I really like, nothing spectacular.  I should try to see how far I can push this privilege.  Will people actually fish out certain colors of M&Ms for me?  Will they trim my steak to look like the profile of my favorite member of Congress?  When I’m told I can have whatever I want…do they mean it?  Glazed llama nuggets are acceptable?

I think I need to start planning my next birthday a few months early this year…I have just raised the bar.

“Today you are you! That is truer than true! There is no one alive who is you-er than you!” ~ Dr. Seuss


I Don’t Get It!

Okay, I’m feeling pretty dumb.

I had challenged myself to write 40 posts in 40 days to cover my Lenten obligation.  I wasn’t counting because I just assumed that the day before Easter (tomorrow) I would have 40 posts if I did this right.  But for some reason I looked at my post count and saw I was up to 49.  This struck me as strange because I had only written five posts before I started my challenge.  So that leaves me with four extra posts.

I double checked my calendar and found out there are 46 days in Lent, but Sundays don’t count.  DON’T COUNT?!!  How many of you knew that and didn’t tell me?!!  For years I could have had coffee on Sundays, or I could have sworn at stupid drivers!  I didn’t know you get six days off!  So I guess this was actually my 46 posts in 46 days challenge (I’m not going to wimp out now that I’m so close!) and I just didn’t know it.

But, that’s just one of a bunch of things I just don’t understand.  I could probably have done my whole blog on stuff that I can’t wrap my mind around.  I’m not selling my brain short, I wouldn’t say I’m an idiot (no, you don’t get a vote), but there are some things that no matter how hard I try I can’t seem to comprehend.

Sticking with the subject of Lent – what’s up with the meat vs. fish thing?  I can’t eat meat on Friday, but I can gorge myself on fish and shrimp and lobster and crabs and any other seafood I want.  But why?  I get the whole “don’t eat meat” part – but I don’t get the “fish aren’t meat” part.  How are fish not meat?  They have a face right?  Once you take the scales and bones away, what’s left?  What do you call the…well…the meaty part of the fish?  Is it a cold blooded thing?  Can I eat alligators on Fridays?  Or is it a lives in water thing?  In that case I could eat otters!  If fish isn’t meat, tell me, what is it?  AND YOU CAN’T SAY FISH!  Cow is cow and pig is pig and chicken is chicken but cow, pig, and chicken are all meat.  So what’s the deal with fish?

What about babies?

***WAIT!  We’re changing subjects!  We aren’t debating whether or not babies are meat – they are – you shouldn’t eat them on Friday or ANY day.  There’s your Bobbing for Popcorn public service announcement: Don’t Eat Babies***

For the most part, babies are in their mothers’ stomachs for around nine months.  Baby is growing, developing, changing, learning stuff, doing stuff.  So THEREFORE, on the day the baby is born, why aren’t they considered 9 months old?  If they’re growing and developing, doesn’t that mean they’re aging as well?  If not, that means from the moment of conception (kids, if you’re reading this, make sure you ask you parents how that works – parents, you’re welcome) until the moment of birth they are the exact same age despite having time advance 9 months for the rest of the world.  That makes a woman’s uterus some sort of Doctor Who-like timey wimey black hole where all time stands still.  So which is it: does time hit pause in a lady’s belly or are we all 9 months older than we get credit for?  And, if you see things my way think about when your birthday is, go back 9 months, and start figuring out who owes you a birthday present because they are way late!

And then there’s the whole thing with colors.  Who named colors?  How do we know blue is blue?  Here’s what really gets me – how do we know that the color I think is blue isn’t the color you think is orange?!!  Our eyes could see things completely different!  You could look at a stop sign and see what I would call purple, but our parents, Sesame Street, and society in general all pointed at stop signs and told us all “This is red.”  So no matter what shade we see, we associate it with the word red!  And it’s world wide!  Every language has different words for the colors, but whether the person says “red,” “rojo,” “rouge,” “‘ahmar,” or “aka,” we will all point at the stop sign.  Mind blown, right?

Fashion blows my mind, too.  My wife has not learned this yet.  She still comes up to me and asks me if her shirt goes with her pants.  I know she wants to know about color, style, and a number of other criteria.  But the only thing I can go on is if they meet in the middle.  Your arms and head are in the shirt, your legs and butt are in the pants, and the shirt doesn’t stop at your ribs or go to your ankles and your pants follow the same guidelines – yup, they go together.  I have well over 100 ties the VAST majority of which have some sort of cartoon character on them.  I have five pairs of shoes – three of those pairs are sneakers, the other two are dress shoes that are exactly the same except one pair is black and the other is brown.  I have socks with tacos on them.  DO I SEEM LIKE THE PERSON TO ASK ABOUT FASHION?!  I remember walking with my wife when we were in college and her feet were getting torn up by her “cute” shoes.  First of all, shoes aren’t cute – puppies, kittens, babies: cute.  Footwear?  Not cute.  And even if I were to find some sort of cuteness in this article of clothing – the ones she was wearing wouldn’t qualify.  I don’t get the “chunky” shoes – I know they’re fashionable and “cute” and I know who shares that opinion: Frankenstein.  Anyway, she was in so much pain and her feet were torn to shreds by the time we got back to our dorms and I asked her why she even wore them (because this wasn’t the first time – so she knew they would hurt) and she said she liked them and they went with her outfit.  You know what I like best about my shoes?  Not bleeding.  You know what doesn’t go with my outfit?  Ironically, bleeding feet.

Most recently, the biggest thing that confuses me is retirement plans.  I really don’t get this whole concept.  I work and get a paycheck and part of that paycheck is saved for later (I get it) and my employer gives a chunk for me to use later (I get it) and then someone takes that money and invests it so I may end up with less money (I don’t get it).  If I were to come up to you and tell you to give me some of your paycheck so I can bring it to Vegas for you and then come back and tell you, “Well, it was a rough week and you actually lost money,” you’d come at me like a deranged badger on bath salts!  But we have a company do it and send us statements and we just keep rolling with it?!!  And, it’s my money right? I know it is because I put it in and I get it when I retire.  So, when I needed some extra money to fix my roof, I was allowed to borrow some from my retirement (I get it) but I need to put it back before I retire (I get it) and they gave me a really great interest rate (I don’t get it).  Wanna hear a great interest rate?  0%!!!  THAT is a great rate because I borrowed the money from myself!  Why would I charge myself interest?!!  Just to be sure, I had a meeting with the borrower (me) and the lender (me) and both parties agreed that there is no need for interest!

The saying goes, ignorance is bliss.  But it’s also pretty fun to talk about these things that I’m ignorant about and see the looks I get from other people when they try to figure out how to deal with my way of thinking.  I guess I just have a different idea of bliss!

“People who think they know everything are a great annoyance to those of us who do.” ~  Isaac Asimov

Way to Go, Roy!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!!!  Top o’ the blog post to ya!

Today marks a very special anniversary for me and my good buddy, Roy.  It’s our 10th anniversary to be exact – oh how the time has flown.

It was my first year working at my new school.  Back then we worked on teams and I was told at my very first team meeting the most important thing about being on the team that I was on – parties were the most important order of business.  Every birthday would be celebrated, Christmas would be celebrated, and whenever someone felt like celebrating extra celebrations would be observed.  Basically, we used every excuse we could to bring food to meetings.  Everyone had a job they were expected to perform: someone would get the treat, someone would get the card, someone would get the drinks, someone would get the plates and stuff.  My job?  The birthday hat.  Now, what they meant was for me to get those cheap little cones with the elastic strap under the chin – but they didn’t say that.  In my mind I thought everyone was supposed to get a “special” hat to wear and, since it’s my mind, I figured it had to be big and gaudy (usually one or two neon posterboards were used in the construction of these ungodly masterpieces).

The history teacher got a 2-foot tall, neon yellow, Abraham Lincoln-esque stovepipe hat.  The Spanish teacher got a humongous sombrero.  One of the teachers had a Halloween birthday so a massive witch’s hat was a must.  At one point there was a need for a crown of ferrets…don’t ask.  So, when it came time for my birthday, I was bracing myself for what this team of creative individuals would come up with…

They forgot my birthday.

In their defense, my birthday falls on a day over our Christmas vacation and we had planned our Christmas party for the last day before break.  It slipped their minds until we were enjoying our holiday treats.  They apologized profusely and said that we would celebrate my birthday after we got back from vacation.  So, while we were on Christmas vacation, I was bracing myself for what this team of creative individuals would come up with…

They forgot my birthday again.

A couple more months passed and we found ourselves on the eve of St. Patrick’s Day.  I was told that we were going to celebrate my birthday on March 17th and since my birthday was forgotten twice AND because there was a half-day of school, we would skip the normal birthday treat at our meeting and we would go out for lunch instead.  It sounded awesome!

Until I woke up the next morning and I knew right away that something was terribly wrong with me.  Sweating, chills, light headed, nauseous, aches from head to toe…bad news. But, I was a first year teacher, I had a young child, my teammates had made big plans for me, and it was only a half-day – I wasn’t going to spend a sick day.  I could muscle through this.

As soon as I got to school I realized that this was not a good idea.  I went from bad to worse before the students even showed up for the day.  Fortunately, there was going to be a teachers vs. students basketball game that took up most of the half-day.  I brought my students down to the gym, excused myself for some lame excuse, and hoofed it back up to my empty wing of the building.  I certainly needed the privacy because I made a beeline to the men’s faculty room and threw up like I never had before.  And that is saying something, because I have violent vomiting sessions – I scare myself!  It’s like someone is trying to exorcise a demon out of a rabid gorilla!  There is much growling and wailing and thrashing and noises that were sampled for Jurassic Park…it’s ugly.  At one point, when I was trying to brace myself, I grabbed ahold of the toilet paper dispenser as another wave overcame me and I ripped it out of the concrete wall.  So, A) yup, confession time, it was me everybody – I broke the toilet paper dispenser 10 years ago and B) they replaced it with a much better, plastic encased, dual roll dispenser – you’re welcome.

I slowly regained my composure, cleaned up, popped some gum, and made my way back to the basketball game.  As soon as it ended, one of my teammates asked me if I was ready for the party.  I nodded and mumbled something incoherent.  I totally forgot about it to be honest, but I wasn’t backing out of this at this point.

Being that it was St. Patrick’s Day, we decided to go one of the best Irish bars and restaurants in our town.  However, being that’s where we went and that’s the day we chose to go – the place was absolutely jam-packed with people.  I staggered in, pale, blurry-eyed, foggy-headed, sport jacket and tie all discombobulated.  I found the table with my teammates and made my way over to them and that’s when I saw it.  My birthday hat.  It was an actual football helmet, but they had attached antennas to it on the tips of which were mounted little blinking lights.  The helmet was blank, so on the side they had written R.O.Y. – Rookie of the Year.

The vast majority of the St. Patrick’s Day revelers had let me pass through without so much as a glance in my direction – however, when a guy is wearing a helmet like The Great Gazoo with multicolored strobe lights on top starts having a table full of people belting out “Happy Birthday” at the tops of their lungs, folks start to take notice.

Looking like I did and acting in the manner that I was, the people at the bar (who had started pounding green beers at sunup) figured I was either a fellow drunkard or someone with some mental deficiencies – in either case, most were convinced my name was Roy. And the strangers rejoiced for today on this glorious emerald holiday, Roy joined this jolly bunch of honorary leprechauns to celebrate the day of his birth.  Strangers from all around the room cheered for him, “Happy birthday, Roy!”  “Congratulations, Roy!”  “Way to go, Roy!”  And all Roy really wanted for his birthday was to go home and puke.

“If you’re lucky enough to be Irish, you’re lucky enough.” ~ Irish Proverb


Old is Awesome

I can’t wait to be old.  Old people are so cool!  No, not like the ones who rifle through the milks looking for the latest expiration date and then pay by check in the checkout line or the ones who complain when a restaurant gives them too much food (seriously, doggy bags have been around for a long time, surely you can handle this situation).  But I’m talking about the awe inspiring examples of what people used to be like before our marshmallowy squishy excuse for generations came around.

I had some great examples growing up with my grandparents and even a great-grandfather to study.  I can only hope to attain a level of badassery that they possessed.

I suppose it started before my great-grandpa, but I don’t know much about my family tree that far back.  My Grandpa John’s name was Carl…let that set in for a moment…this man was so cool, I didn’t know his real name until I was almost a teenager.  He was straight off the boat from Sweden and he is technically a survivor of the Titanic.  Technically he was supposed to be on that ship.  Technically he needed to take a later trip.  So technically he survived the Titanic.

He was a man of very few words.  I only remember him saying things like, “Hi,” “Bye,” and “Beer, please.”  He lived to be 99 (I know, way to drop the ball, Gramps) and he was active for most of those years…overly active…like he probably shouldn’t have been on roofs in his 80’s.  Yeah, I said roofs…plural.  One time his roof needed fixing and he didn’t need any help fixing it, so up on the house he went.  My grandmother was worried sick, not because he was on the roof, but because she couldn’t find him.  She looked all over the house, all around outside, and he was nowhere to be found.  The man was in his 80’s – he could have wandered off who knows where!  But good ol’ Grandpa didn’t want to get in trouble so as soon as he heard his daughter was looking for him, he pressed himself up against the part of the roof where he couldn’t be seen.  Eventually, he was caught and scolded.  Not as badly as when he did it a couple years later and was forced to come back in through a window instead of down the ladder thus tracking tar through the house.  He learned his lesson though – when it came time to take down the television antenna from the house, he got tired of his family yelling at him not to…so he tied a rope around one of his grandchildren, anchored them in the attic, and had them do it.

The man was fearless and never was it more evident then when we decided to celebrate one of his last birthdays with a cake containing all of the necessary candles (I think it was somewhere around 95 – I can’t remember exactly – more than 90, less than 99 and definitely more candles than should have been lit at one given time).  He was the only one who didn’t scream when all of those pretty little flames banded together to create one giant birthday fireball.  He just sat there with a little grin patiently waiting for a charred piece of wax-encrusted cake.

He is certainly not the only tough knot in the wood of my family tree.  For the past few posts, I have mentioned Pop – my grandpa.  Awesome guy and tough as nails.  He is the guy I think of when it comes to badassery.  I’m sure the following sentence isn’t used often, but one day I came home and my parents told me, “Your grandfather was hit by a semi; don’t worry, he’s fine.”

A.  Semi.

He was driving cars from an auction back to a dealership (as he did nearly every day) and he hit an icy patch at the end of an on-ramp and slid into the path of an on-coming 18-wheeler.  He was driving a little, sporty car (his favorite) and the car was torn in half.  The semi driver stopped as soon as he could and ran back to the scene of the accident knowing there was nothing he could do for whomever was in that car.  Well, I guess technically he was right.  My grandfather met him on the road while he was looking for his hat that got thrown off his head and tossed into the part of the car that was turned into confetti. The semi driver asked if Pop had seen what happened to the people in the car…Pop just wanted to know if the guy could help him find his hat (in his defense, it was a pretty cool hat).  The next day my grandmother and I got him to agree to go to the hospital to get checked out.  When the doctor asked why he was there, Pop told him that he had gotten in a car accident with a tractor trailer.  The doctor laughed and waited for the real answer.  He stopped when he looked at my grandfather and saw that he was serious.  He was taken for x-rays and it’s a good thing he went to the hospital when he did because the bruise on his hip needed some ice.

I don’t think I could ever measure up to those two guys.  I’m pretty much a pansy who hates being on roofs now and whimpers whenever a semi drives by me.  However, I do think I’m probably going to take advantage of my age like my grandmother does.  My grandma (who will soon be 90 and who will NOT be getting a cake with 90 candles…lesson learned) does more than embrace her age – she exploits it.  She still drives on her own and even plays soccer with my son in her backyard.  Now, granted, I’ve been in the car with her when she decided that traffic rules don’t apply to her after a certain age including the “we always drive on the right” rule (I told her that I know she feels like she’s had a good long life, but I would still like some more of mine) and I have caught her standing over my son’s prone body looking down on him (in her sweater, long skirt, and sneakers) mockingly telling him, “Well, we could tackle in soccer when I was a kid!”

I have a long way to go, but it’s going to be fun when I get there!

“Age is an issue of mind over matter.  If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.” ~ Mark Twain