Saturday, January 22, 2011

Today I Feel...

It's a Sunday morning in January. It's cold. I'm tired. With a long week of work behind me, and another one coming up, I feel...

OUT OF SHAPE: As I do most days, I get up and pull on my running stuff and head out. Yes, there are those who love running and look forward to it and feel better after it. I am not one of those. I do it because if I didn't do it I would get no exercise at all. And as many times as I do it, every day feels like the first time. There seems to be no building up endurance or strength. All that seems to happen is that when I get to the turn-around point, I can't believe how heavy my legs feel, how sore my knees are and how hard I'm breathing to make it up the last hill. I feel the burn, just not in a good way.

THERE AREN'T ENOUGH HOURS IN THE DAY: I would like nothing more than to sit and read the paper cover to cover. I would like nothing more than to strap on my snowshoes and take a walk in the woods. I would like nothing more than to finish the book I started. I would like nothing more than to pay all the bills on my desk, review our retirement portfolio and do some analysis of our other investments. I would like nothing more than to cruise the net looking at stupid stuff on Ebay. I would like nothing more than to lie on the couch and watch football. I would like nothing more than to take a nap. But something's gotta give. It's a coin flip what will actually get done.

LIKE AN IDIOT: Not a unique feeling, I'll grant you, but perhaps more so today than usual. The paper is filled with fascinating stories, about the possible emergence of a democratic government in the Arab country of Tunisia, the development of cyberwarfare against Iran and the independence struggles of southern Sudan. But to understand the importance of any of it in context, I first have to look up exactly where Tunisia is, how to make uranium by centrifuge and the tribal history of the Sudan. And to think I was focused on whether the Jets special teams were up the challenge. Was that really a good use of what limited brainpower I have?

OLD: My reading glasses broke, and I found myself practically incapacitated. As such I have to make a run to Target to buy a few more pairs, so I can place them anywhere in the house where I might have to decipher the print before me. On top of that, I'm finding that when I get in the car, the first thing I do is turn the heat up to high, and swivel the vent to hit my hands to warm them up so they work. Even with a nap in the afternoon, sitting still and focusing on a conversation after 10PM and not falling asleep is a major struggle. And as I go from my office in the basement up to the first floor, I'm suddenly understanding the simple genius of the guy who invented the banister.

BEHIND THE TIMES: In spite of the fact that I have a computer, a Kindle, an iPad and an Android Smartphone, I merely use all to work, check the weather and read the news. But today it's all about software, not hardware. According to what the experts are saying, the fastest growing cohort for social media is 65 and up. So the fact that I am not a dedicated user of Facebook, Twitter and the like means that I am being left out of the loop by my eighty year-old mother.

COLD: Maybe it's because I'm getting older. Maybe it's because I've had business trips to southern climes of late, and have seen the ocean. Maybe it's because the snow at the end of our driveway is over five feet high. And did I mention I'm getting older? In any case, I do believe in global warming... I just wish it would happen now. It's only January, and my feet are cold.

Individually, each is a challenge and I can wave it off. Taken together it's enough to make me feel like someone hit me with a stick. But there is good news on the horizon, and it's as simple as the clock. After all, tomorrow is just hours away.


Marc Wollin of Bedford is trying to keep up, but it's getting harder. His column appears regularly in The Record-Review, the Scarsdale Inquirer and online at

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