The Kid at Heart

Recently, I have seen a couple of things that got me thinking about myself.  The first came from one of my oldest friends, Jim Devitt, who quoted Jimmy Buffett “I’m growing older, but not up–My metabolic rate is pleasantly stuck.”  Yep, just cuz there are more and more candles on your cake does NOT mean you have to become an old fogey.

Then, Joe Kurmaskie today posted a quote from an author he has read, Joe Hill, “When you replace imagination with resignation you give up your childhood.”

I started pondering: How do we recognize if we are starting to, or have, lost that kid at heart?

The easiest and most self-serving way would to think about would of course be cycling.  This takes two parts.  1) Do you still ride a bike?  and 2) Do you ride it, even sometimes, like a kid?

Number 1 is the easiest.  Many of us ride a bike. I am of the firm belief that anyone on two wheels, pedaling down the road, is still in touch with the younger version of themselves.  The bike is, for most of us, our first taste of freedom. the first time away from the parents.  Maybe our first trip to the store or to a movie.  Quite often, while in the saddle, I am reminded of the rides I used to take.  Always puts a smile on my face.

Then #2, riding like a kid.  I still try to catch air when I hit a bump.  I race people who don’t even know they are being competed against, and I look for the hardest, yet most fun route.  Riding like a kid makes you young, and keeps you in shape.  If you find yourself occasionally with a stupid grin on your face while riding, you get what I mean!

But it’s not all about cycling.  Being a kid at heart means looking around the world and saying “Oh hell yeah, I can do that!”  What do I mean?  Well what about this?

image

 

This is Aftershock, one of the biggest and baddest roller coasters at Silverwood (Idaho) amusement park.  I saw this and the kid in me said “Oh Hell yeah!  I am so riding this!!”  Rode it 3 times, 1 time too many, but loved it!  We, Manchild and I,  rode every coaster and water slide in the park. We had a blast!

But we all aren’t roller coaster riders either.  So what else is there?  hmmm TREES!  When you look at a tree, do you still think you can climb it, like the Mathmajor here?

image

 

When I was a kid, I would climb any and every tree I could.  Shoot, once we tried to climb a tree to sneak a peek at a friends high school sister (we failed and got in trouble.)  So one would think, at almost 50, I would’ve stopped looking for trees to climb?

imageYeah, no!  To this day, if I can, I will!  Here I am in Key West, across the street from Hemingway’s house.  I saw it, and my first thought was?  “Oh hell yeah gotta climb it!”  Yep I did!

Not a tree climber?  Let me ask this.  think about a board game from when you were a kid.  For me it would be Operation.  Given the chance, would you play it now?  I would!  Never did get the funny bone out with out setting off the alarm!  Yep, if you can think of a game like that (I like Battleship as well) the kid is still alive.

None of these work?  OK, this is my last shot.  Bodily function noises.  Do you ever giggle if someone hiccups, burps or farts?  My wife and I have a saying “Farts are funny!”  We’ve all been around when this has occurred.  If you have stifled a giggle, hidden a smile or let loose a chortle, your inner kid is still there!

Ok, if none of these apply, all is not lost.  Do you still find humor when others don’t at work?  Do you whistle in the stairwell because of he cool echo?  Ever consider sliding down a bannister or running through a sprinkler?  All of these are signs the kid inside you is still there, aching to get out!

I speak from experience here.  Let it loose!  The most fun days I’ve had at work or home are when I do NOT act almost 50.  Life is way to short not to enjoy it!  And no one enjoys life likea kid!  Letting the kid inside you out will make you live longer!

I think its time for all of you to start looking for the best climbing tree in the neighborhood!

 

 

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