Friday, May 15, 2015


I still remember the day I realized that I could look into the medicine cabinet mirror without standing on the toilet. I don't know how old I was, but it was a great day. It meant that my parents hadn't lied to me, that I wouldn't be short all my life. Later on, a few years down the road, I woke up one day to find that I had pubic hair. It was a little confusing and I didn't exactly know what to make of it. So I shaved it off. I don't think my dad ever figured out that somebody had used his razor. Anyway, that is what life is made up of, milestones. It isn't necessarily the specific birthday that you remember (I don't remember any of them), it's the episodes that you remember. Times that are so momentous that they stick. The day I passed my driver's license test on the first try stands out. After easily passing the test my dad took me across the road to Shakey's Pizza. It was one of the very few one on one moments I had with my dad. To me it's as if it happened last month. As you get older the milestones start to get a bit scary. When I was in my late thirties I specifically recall the day I realized that if I had fathered a child right out of high school, as some of my classmates had, I could already be a grandfather. It sent shivers up my spine and was partly responsible for my moving to Florida. Not that I felt like some old retired grandpa, but because if I didn't move to a warmer climate at that time, I would never do it.

Now, after twenty six years of living here in Florida, another realization came to me. It struck me last Christmas morning while I was cleaning up dog poop at Abandoned Pet Rescue. The young guy who had moved here and laughed at all the old farts driving around in their giant Mercury Grand Marquis' was now one of those old farts. I was one of the ubiquitous army of old guys wandering around wearing shorts, off brand Polo shirts, and sensible walking shoes. Good god I thought, I have to get out of here. So I am, I plan to get out of here and I guess Mark is coming with me. I realize that this will probably be my last move, at least voluntarily, before I die. Another twenty six years from now I'll be ninety one and my nephews and nieces will be trying to put me in a home, and if that happens I can only hope I am unaware. Geez, twenty six years goes by super fast.


  1. Just when I thought I wanted to move back to Florida I realized their is no reason to except the warm or hot humid weather. I'm becoming acclimated to the northern weather again. Plus Chicago is only 4 1/2 hours away. Kudos to you Alan for surviving 26 years or almost half your life in Florida.

    1. Thank you so much G Allen. Really, thank you.... almost half my life.