Not because it is on some bucket list, but because I might like it. I might be good at it.
Fellow boomers – our world needs us – and we need ourselves, to be alive and vital.
Let’s give thanks for that.
I don’t feel spent, or done.
I’m 64. No patents. No hit records. I’ve not written masterful software or developed apps. Not written a great novel. What great business is nobody building?
What we dream to do can be real, what we feel inspired or compelled to do can be inspiring and compelling. What we have a notion to do can be transformative in our lives, in lives of many others.
When I hear someone whining over puny problems I gag.
Mostly those aren’t real problems. Wasting energy – silly-shite about not getting a date, not feeling attractive as they used to feel, something didn’t work according to plans made when twenty, because they are out of work or their business adventure failed on its first go …
I’m not completely unsympathetic but words of my friend Annie from New Jersey fit best: “build a bridge and get over it ….”
Everything we’ve ever done, we can do more, do different, teach what we know, help others learn more, achieve more. Of anything …
Not getting older, getting better – not some cosmetic commercial slogan – it is a reality we can choose.
No schoolmaster, parent, government regulation or market force stands in our way. Not many people start great things or shake-up this world in their 50s, 60s or beyond. Why is that? Is it because they aren’t capable, or because they don’t think they can? No medical evidence, or law of man or nature decrees ideas, innovation, energy and breakthroughs are the sole province of the young.
We’ve always had prodigies, superstars and wiz kids. Great. So many did their best work before most of us finished school or rented that first apartment. Einstein, Jobs, Edison, Mozart, Gates, Henson, Zukerberg – a sampling – their successes came so young. Some peaked early. Most never quit.
If he had stopped, nobody would have complained. Edison wasn’t contented inventing light bulbs (he was 29). He died with over a 1,000 patents to his name.
I love Edgar Doctorow’s comment on writing: It’s like driving a car at night. You never see further than your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.
Do you believe we are not getting younger, stronger, fitter or more capable? We collective-think that, so easily giving in to belief that our best work is behind us – if we haven’t already done something great, that we never will. Bull feathers. Poppycock. Yes, we may be running low on time. Type faster Mark …
But opportunity is everywhere. Just do it. Hurry up about it. We have not peaked, can do so much more. Our choice – we can watch days and years pass by, watch obituaries so we don’t miss funerals of our departing friends. Or, we can do something. Doctorow was right, we can’t see very far down any road. But we have Edison’s lightbulbs, and we can drive all night …
It is night. We have headlights.
What stands in our way?
P.S.: Julia Child publisher her first cookbook at 39, debuted The French Chef at 51. Sam Walton started Wal-Mart at 44. Ray Kroc was over 50 when the bought the first McDonald’s. Charles Darwin published On the Origin of the Species at 50. Duncan Hines wrote his first food/travel guide at 55, sold his first cake mix at 73. Rodney Dangerfield got his first break at 46. Vera Wang didn’t decide to become a designer till she was 40. Martha Stewart publisher her first book at 41. Harland Sanders franchised KFC when he was 62 in 1952.
written / published from Calgary, AB
morning walk: 13C/55F, some clouds, much wind – warm, wonderful swirls of leaves curling around us with every stride, Gusta finding edibles everywhere … streets empty, life is calm but those leaves are having a frenetic time staying in one place, unwilling to stay piled or parked with the life taken out of them …
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