Robert (gurdonark) wrote,

on aging, gracelessly

"I can't see myself at thirty, I don't buy a lacquered thirty
Caught like flies, preserved for tomorrow's jewelry, again"--old REM song

"Quiet and pensive
My thoughts apprehensive
The hours drift away
Leaving my homeland
Playing a lone hand
My life begins today"--old Rush song

It was nearly twenty years ago today that Sgt. Pepper taught the band to play.
I mean to say instead that I first began to work for a law firm as an actual lawyer in May of 1984. I didn't pass the bar until November of 1984, as bar results take months to achieve. But they called me an "associate" of a law firm the moment I got out of school.

I have a saying--"one always becomes what one fears the most", but I'm not sure it quite applies to me. Today, at the cost of abbreviating lunch a bit,
I drove over to the Spring Creek Nature Preserve to walk the trails. the
bluebonnets and evening primrose have given way to that purple flower I believe they call "winecups", but they may call something else altogether.
As I walked down a shady part of the trail, a small snake crossed the path. I believe it was the local ribbon snake, although the absence of a nearby pond made my identification less likely. I never found the practice of law to be particularly serpentine or reptilian, and I've never had cool red stripes, except after ill-advised July weekends.

I remember driving the local roads on my first weekends here. I loved early Sunday mornings driving through the fog on the bridges over Lake Ray Hubbard.
I loved going to Dinosaur Valley State Park on the Saturday after I passed the bar exam, and lying on a boulder the size of ten men, and staring up into the sky. What did it all mean? What did it all hold?

I never really meant to leave Arkansas, you see. I fell in love with the work I was doing, though. Dallas is, for Arkansans, something like "home court", anyway. Then I never really meant to move to Los Angeles, but I came to enjoy it, and I've always rather liked that my life has had more facets than I ever could have guessed when I was twelve.

But by any measure, twenty years is a dauntingly long time. Forty five years, the age I'll turn in August, is the beginning of actually aging a bit. I have a few regrets--mostly over a cookie too many, a kind word too few.

But I don't gasp for breath, or lost youth. I do not think I age particularly gracefully. But I age, and I don't mind.

Now, I'll have to solve the problem of the next many years, if I can.

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