Tom Terrific and Forever Young.
A few days ago, a very old man named Tom did something spectacular. At the advanced age of 43, he won another Super Bowl. Well, I did something spectacular that same day and I’m 81. I stayed awake through the entire game to watch Tom play.
For centuries, people have talked about, but never could prove, the Fountain of Youth actually exists in a real place for all to experience. Well, it’s real and it has a home. The Fountain of Youth is located in Tampa. No doubt about it. I saw it that Sunday night with my own glaucoma-restricted, cataract-corrected, old eyes. I frequently miss fixing typos in my blog drafts, but I didn’t miss a thing in that game. Tom was Tom Terrific...again. He showed his young whipper-snapper competitor a thing or two, or perhaps a thing or 43.
What keeps running through my mind is how many similarities there are between Tom and me.
Perhaps most obvious is that we both married terrific women. Gisele is dazzling, sensational, smashing, divine, exquisite, heavenly and independently wealthy. Wow! Just as there is a Fountain of Youth, she is a Super Model. Not to be outdone, Karen was a Super Social Worker who was (and is) kind, thoughtful, grounded, intelligent, helpful and someone I am proud to claim as a tax deduction.
Another similarity between HOF-bound Tom and me is that we each took the opportunity for a mid-career change after spending many years working for just one employer. Neither of us lost a step. In fact, making that switch recharged our batteries. There’s a lesson in that and it’s this. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and do something new. Today, as a world-class blogger I am actually in my third or fourth life form and looking forward to becoming a zip line instructor next. The absolute worst that can happen to me is a line will snap and I’ll fall a couple hundred feet into a remote forest where I will remain undiscovered for thousands of years just like the Fountain of Youth. But, I’ll show up again somewhere up the road, likely in Tampa.
Tom is known far and wide for taking good care of his body. You need to do that when your occupation may lead to being planted upside down under artificial turf in a nearly empty stadium by some 337-pound angry giant. Like me, Tom does a lot of stretching. He has a nice outdoor office in Tampa. The only real difference between our routines is that I do my stretching in my indoor office in Cleveland. But, make no mistake about it, my workout buddy Tom and I are stretching all the time.
Which gets us to how similar our diets are and we all know you are what you eat. Tom Terrific eats lots of veggies and grains and avocados and fruit smoothies. What I focus on is to make sure I consume all of the essential food groups. On any given day, those include wine, chocolate, mac and cheese, fries and ice cream. I do confess to hating string beans. Like Tom, I look just as I did as a college student. My weight never varies unless I eat a little too much pepperoni pizza. Think about that. Put it in the category of food for thought.
Soon, Tom and I will both be inducted into the Fountain of Youth Hall of Fame. I am 81. Tom is 43 going on 81. Once in a while, I aspire to be 43 again. I suspect when Tom thinks about being 81 - and that will happen sooner than he imagines - that he aspires to be me. There are so many similarities with us. It’s just amazing.
When Tom gets to be 81, I will be moving right along at 119, very likely the oldest person in the world. He’ll still be playing football and seeking his 33d Super Bowl ring while I’ll be the executive director of the Fountain of Youth Museum.
I’m going to make only one change as I think about 119. I’m going to change my first name from Davis to Forever. That way, I’ll be Forever Young just like my hero Tom.
See you in Tampa Bay.
DY: In Just a Few Words is a blog that comes out when something needs to be said or every Tuesday - whichever comes first. Davis Young is a communications professional who adds 50+ years of experience and perspective to issues of the day. His emphasis in DY: In Just a Few Words will be humor (a touch of sarcasm here, a pinch of facetiousness there...). Once in a while, he will touch on something a bit more serious - but hopefully not too deep or depressing.
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