Friday, June 28, 2013

two midnights

A common theme of the conversations in my gym's locker room relates to how we are aging.  "How is your tennis game" inquiries are met with snorts and sighs.  "Can't bounce back as fast.  Can't get to shots I used to."  On Thursday an old friend pounded his belly and said, "put on a few pounds and that is not helping."

Tonight two locker room buddies were talking about going to the Cape this weekend.  They exchanged notes on restaurants near where they stay when they're vacationing.  At one point they hit on a spot that they'd both been to with their spouses.  One fellow said to the other.  "Went there for New Year's Eve last year."

"No kidding" said his friend. "Didn't know they did much business in the winter."

"Place was packed for New Year's" said the chum.  Then he laughed.  "Had two midnights."

"Two midnights?"

"Yeah, the clientele is getting so old, that they had a midnight at 10 and a midnight at 12, so those of us who couldn't make it to midnight, popped the champagne and said happy new year at 10. Then they did the whole thing again for those who could stay up."

A bunch of us who were overhearing the conversation got a kick out of this.  The night owl continued.  "Most of the people I knew opted for the early midnight."

I'm not quite there, but I am getting there I guess.  I imagine in a year or two the 10 oclock midnight might seem very attractive. For now, though, what has me thinking about this is the notion of multiple opportunities to celebrate.  You miss midnight at midnight, well then, make 1 a.m. your midnight. You miss joy in say 2012 well then go for it in 2013.  Have a bad month of June. Celebrate June in July or just July in July.  For those of us who have not thrown away our lives irrevocably, there are multiple midnights.

This is not the case for someone like Aaron Hernandez.  A multimillionaire but he took such alarming steps such that at 23 he threw away his chances for a single midnight.  A life wasted.

Old family story. My dad is teaching me how to saw wood. This is a bit of a joke because whereas my grandfather was very skilled with tools, my dad was not so naturally gifted.  But this day he is teaching me to saw.  He has a line on a piece of wood.  My job is to cut on the line.  Well, I go off the line, but I am nearly done cutting the wood. Dad spots that I am off the line.  He tells me to go back to where I went off the line, get back on the line, and finish cutting the wood. I comment that I am almost done.  He says no matter how far along you are, you are off where you want to go.

How is this relevant?  You want multiple midnights, well you have to give yourself an opportunity to have the choice.  If you keep travelling way off course, like an Aaron Hernandez and notorious others, your opportunities for multiple chances to enjoy sweet moments will no longer be.

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