Tuesday, September 7, 2010

40th B-Day - The beginning of the end

A number of people asked me if I would be creating another blog like I did two years ago when I spent Three Months in Taiwan. At first I thought, "of course I will", then I realized that I'm not into the Facebook "hey look at me!" thing, and decided not to do another blog. I didn't want to do another blog unless I could figure out some reason why I should do it. I thought about it for a while, and decided the only thing I could think of was doing a one year documentation about turning 40 and what, if any midlife crisis changes occurred over the following 365 days. It may end up being just another mindless rambling blog, but I figure I should at least try to have some kind of method to the madness.

As crazy as it sounds, I've been looking forward to turning 40 for quite some time. I've been kidding myself for a number of years thinking I was "young". I don't look 40, and I certainly don't act 40, but it's nice to have some kind of milestone in life to actually confirm what I've been feeling recently the past number of years...I'm not young, I am old, and only getting older. The only people that will tell you 40 is not old, are people that are older than 40 (usually people in their 50-60's). "Life begins at 40"? I wonder how old the person was that came up with that phrase?

So today I turned 40 and it didn't start any differently than any other day. I woke up, exercised, took a shower and started the day. I decided to treat myself and go to "Subway" and get a steak and cheese sandwich and afterwards started reviewing my Chinese studies from 2 years ago. I signed up for the second Chinese class yesterday, but the class doesn't start until October 6th, so I have a month to get ready and review.

I bought myself a nice present that was delivered today, a Yamaha P-95B keyboard. My right hand is still messed up from tendinitis from lifting heavy amps at work, playing too much guitar and recently moving, so I can't really play guitar right now without pain. Playing the piano doesn't seem to bother my recent tendinitis, I'm just hoping a different hand injury from playing the too much piano earlier in the year doesn't come back, or I won't be doing anything music related anytime soon. In the first 26 years of playing music, I never had one music related injury. Now in the past 6 months, I've had two pretty serious hand injuries related mostly to overplaying. All I want is for my hands to hold up for the next year...after that, fine I'll give in and quit if that's what my body is telling me to do. This getting old thing seriously sucks. I can't imagine the nightmare it must be to be a professional athlete and watch your body slowly degenerate and fall apart as you watch your career slowly slip away right before your very eyes.

In the evening, my wife Charlene invited a bunch of our friends to meet us for a late dinner at my favorite restaurant in all of Taiwan, 永朋 (Always Friends) Beer House located one block from where we live. For $199 NTD ($6 US) you can drink all of the Taiwan Beer you want from a tap that faces outward, so you just go up and serve yourself. One time we left early around 10pm, and the owner told us, "If you want to come back later tonight, you can come back and drink more for free". That place would go out of business in a week in the USA. Needless to say we go there at least once a week.

So a group of our friends came out and we ate, drank, and were merry and ushered in the start of my 5th decade of life (my god that sounds 1000 times worse than turning 40). The older I get, the more I realize how important family and friends are, and how unimportant so many other things are in life.

I was in Germany touring with Steel Prophet when I turned 30, I'm in Taipei, Taiwan turning 40, if I make it to 50, I should probably find a pretty interesting place to do it. Life's short, enjoy the ride...before you know it, it's going to be over...and like it or not, there's no refund on that purchase.



  1. I am glad you are doing the blog, it will be a very interesting year for both of us~~

  2. Way to go Jim -Remember, the more beer you drink, the younger you feel (at the moment anyway)...LOL

    easy on the hands, even piano playing can aggravate your injury if you overdo it.


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