When we're young, we can't wait to get older. We measure our age in half years. We're not 8; we're 8½.
But as we get older, time is going faster than the speed of light, so it seems, and we often wish we were younger, much younger. You can almost hear us older folks say, "I wish I knew then what I know now," or "Youth is wasted on the young."
How often do you reflect back upon your childhood?
Do you think about the friendships, the activities, the anticipation of summer vacation and thirst for fun at all costs? All of the above?
I know I do.
I was a big baseball, football and basketball card collector as a kid, and while I did not attach cards to the spokes of my bicycle wheels, I was stupid enough one year to tape some of my favorite baseball cards to my bedroom wall, ruining any real value the card had.
Of course, at the time, it made perfect sense. Why wouldn't I want my heroes someplace I could see them every day and dream that maybe I could be like them -- good enough to play in the Big Leagues?
In my teen years, the baseball cards were replaced by posters. Only they weren't always sports posters, but rather the iconic poses of sultry babes like Farrah Fawcett and Cheryl Tiegs.
For anyone under the age of 40, you may want to Google those names.
And there was a little nerd in me, too, I must confess. I had a couple of "Star Wars" posters. Can you imagine if those of us of a certain age had kept those posters in mint condition? They would most certainly be worth some big money today.
And on the small screen, I was a big "Battlestar Galactica" fan. Even today, I still prefer science fiction to most other movie options.
So, what set off this walk down memory lane?
Probably the fact that last month marked the 40th anniversary of my high school graduation at Carbondale. It seems so surreal. Forty years. Is that even possible?
I can still remember my mustache and budding goatee, the long hair, the excitement of an achieved milestone and the look ahead to an uncertain future.
And then in the blink of an eye, I'm 57, not 17, here writing this column in this newspaper for you -- our readers.
Whoever said "life is fleeting" sure knew what he was talking about.