It may come as a surprise to some of you, but I am NOT the best at filtering what comes out of my mouth. No, Really! True story!
I had a boss once that came in all excited showing off his linen salmon pants he got on sale. He walked up, me wearing my khaki dockers and polo shirt, and said “I KNOW you wish you could pull off this color like I do!”
Without a blink or hesitation I replied, “Even salmon themselves hate that color, they wear it on the inside!!” He didn’t seem to appreciate the humor. (For the record they were GAWD AWFUL ugly, and it wasn’t, by far, the ugliest piece of clothing he owned. (OR it is entirely possible I just don’t understand fashion))
But I digress… A couple of days ago I was the recipient of a non filter….
My current, and soon to be former boss, is from Australia. She has the full blown accent, and there are times we need an Australian to American dictionary. The first meeting with her, she tells us, “OK, its time for my to show you my naughties!” (Folks, I honestly had NO idea what was coming. ) She then took out a container of homemade, very fattening, baked goods. (Yes I was VERY relieved!)
At another meeting, this one where I was in an office with three managers and she was in Seattle talking on the phone, she said, “Yes I am shooting a rocket up our collective asses on this one!” I hit the mute button, and explain to the clearly shocked lady I was sitting with “This means make it a priority and work on it now!” This time the manager I was sitting with was much relieved!
I say soon to be former as her husband’s employer is sending him back down under next month. Life will be a bit more boring soon in the office.
So, this leads us to the reason for the post…
On Thursday she sends me a message saying her husband had just called her. He was explaining to her that he was “Completely knackered (worn out in American!) from a 50 mile bike ride!”
I replied, “That can be a hard ride! I myself did 45 after work last night and I was a bit tired..”
And then it came…
“You know, for a middle aged guy, you are in pretty good shape!
OK my first thought was “Is this how I look to people?”
My second thought (and please forgive the language) “Middle aged!?!?! Bitch I will cut you!!” (no I did NOT say that)
And as this was going on she added, “I hope that comes across as a compliment! Look at this your age that we work with, how many could do what you do?”
OK, I was mollified a bit. (Middle aged my ass)
But, then I had to sit back and think about it.
I see riders MUCH older than I am all the time. Quite frequently, they are passing me. How do I know they are older, hell some of them have gray beards and are clearly retired. But that is not who I work with.
I have a few people I work with who ride. One is getting ready for the 1 day (206) mile Seattle to Portland next week. Another rides with her husband all the time as he is getting ready to ride to Vancouver next month.
A few others ride to work, or ride for fun. But on the whole, if I look at the 50 something males I work with, she is not wrong. One has to remember we work for an insurance company. Desk and cubicle work. Lots of stress and lots of “Hey look! Donuts!!” Shoot just last week I learned that a guy that I thought was at least 10 years older than I, was the same age….
Looking back, I know 25 year old Tony who liked beer and darts would never be able to ride 100 miles at the drop of a hat, or climb the hills that provide views like this
Was in good shape, but running was never something to do for fun to me, it was exercise. Trying to stave off anyone saying I was “middle aged!”
Was in EXCELLENT shape and loved to hike, but hiking can’t happen everyday. To get in shape for the climbs meant walking endless stairs in Seattle
Ahhh, but Middle Aged cycling Tony… Every day I go to work (for the most part) I saddle up! I can take the long way home after work for more miles because I WANT to, not cuz I have to work out. And on the weekends I can ride as much and as far as I want.
More importantly, have you ever noticed how often the photos I take while riding have me happy or smiling?
So, even though I still disagree with middle aged, I prefer cycling stud, I think in Australian she was truly telling me that she is impressed with how much I exercise and my overall health and condition.
I think I would have just preferred “You know, for an Insurance desk jockey, you really are a cycling stud!” Maybe in the Australian to American dictionary I can add this!!
Like the wind!