Death and taxes: The biproducts of adulting

Published 6:38 am Saturday, February 9, 2019

Late in January I turned 45 years old.

Now, I realize that line probably doesn’t have the punch of something like that which Charles Dickins used to open up his classic “A Christmas Carol.”

“Marley was dead, to begin with. There is no doubt whatever about that. The register of his burial was signed by the clergyman, the clerk, the undertaker, and the chief mourner.”

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Compared to:

Eric Johnson turned 45 on Jan. 31. There is no doubt whatever about that.

See, the comparison leaves a lot to be desired, and now that I look at it ,it really diminishes the occassion of the milestone.

If I were you, read somebody like Dave Berry who is more significant for you column reading purposes.

What this really means, is the continuation of a troubling trend I’ve been coping with over the years — growing old.

I first noticed this trend when I was really young, but never really recognized it until — well, ever I guess.

I know your name demon, you have no power over me, is sometimes that which you hear in horror movies as a way of keeping the evil at bay.

The problem is, recognizing you are getting old really doesn’t keep it at bay. Only tried and true immaturity can do that. The whole young-at-heart stuff.

For many I suppose this is represented by a rash of purchases of the midlife crisis variety. The sports cars, the boats, plastic surgery and trying to date outside the common age range.

While that might work for many, that really doesn’t work as smoothly for me, mostly because my given profession of journalism doesn’t really allow for such extravagences.

So many others are choosing the fast lane of midlife crisis, and I’m over here strolling down the toy aisle of life, getting the stink eye from kids who should be there.

Being harshly judged by a 9-year-old aside, I can confidently say that I’ve never purchased a toy just to display it in the packaging at home. I play with it like any other … normal … person.

I still play video games as well. These are just some of the things that I do in order to at least keep my mind young. To various degrees and successes, I’ve largely accomplished the task of staying mindfully young if not by body.

Forty-five may not be over the hill necessarily, but the warning signs are there. The body doesn’t recover quite as fast from injuries, knees argue a little more with me when sitting cross-legged for an extended periods of time, and I’m wearing glasses.

I once stated rather emphatically that I would never get glasses, but what I want doesn’t matter in the end.

There is also the fact that I’m responsible for those things that happen in life now. Unexpected bills, house issues, car issues and the like. Handling these issues is what is called “adulting.” Definition: The act of being a grown up and paying for things that go wrong.

Paying bills and going to work, these fall under adulting and if I’m to be honest, adulting from time to time sucks.

Sure, you can go into a liquor store without using an ID featuring a picture of Keanu Reeves with your name. Not that I ever did that. We were a small town and dad knew everybody within a 500 mile radius (estimation). They would have found out eventually and most importantly I’m not near as handsome as Keanu Reeves. You’re seeing my picture there at the top of the second column and you’ve seen “John Wick” and “Point Break.” Pretty open and shut case.

But it always seems like as an adult you’re spending more money on things you don’t want to spend it on. This only seems more important, however, because you’re spending money that isn’t your parent’s money.

This is an important step because if nothing else brings home the idea of responsibility, it’s the idea that suddenly you are spending your own money when you could just go and ask mom and dad to float you a few bucks before.

Of course, they could always tell you “no” and even at the whizzened old age of 15, I started to understand “adulting” because adulting also means wide-ranged disappointment.

Disappointment comes with many aspects of growing older —like going to bed at 9:30 p.m.

Remember when the best you could promise was midnight because you were a child of the night, leaving those moments of the wildlife as if it was your last.

Bed?! Hah, that’s for losers with no place to go. You had things to do, places to go. There was time for sleeping when you were dead … Bon Jovi said that once in a song, it must be true.

Now, bed at 9:30 p.m. is among the best things ever and you rejoice every time you sink into the mattress and swaddle yourself in the bedding and HOLY COW … when did Jon Bon Jovi get that old?!

You see, it’s not just about you anymore, it’s about others, it’s about other things.

Tell me how that doesn’t suck. We’re in the world of me first, aren’t we, and me first says I need a Godzilla action figure on my desk.

Responsibility brings with it a heady notion of needing to control things outside that sphere of influence you didn’t normally worry about.

You lose that self-centered nature that sometimes represents being a child or teen.

And now, here we are. I’ve admitted that I turned 45 and no matter how much I rail against it and by extension of life from that, I am getting older.

I’m spotting gray hairs where there were none before and losing hair from other places and in a few days I will have to pay my taxes and worse yet, there are no toy stores near us.

Life is terribly unfair.