Meandering / Uncategorized

Meandering Monday about Signs of Mortality

I still think I’m immortal – at least compared to some. Still…

This weekend I took the outside Christmas decorations down and in (our tree will stay up in the house for another couple of weeks, because that’s the way we like it.) I didn’t have to climb on the roof like I did when I put the lights on the house – in fact, I didn’t need a ladder at all – the most strenuous effort I had to perform was to try to reach an extension cord that was a foot above my reach. I was able to stand on the landscaping stones I put in almost twenty-years ago and reach for it sideways, instead of trying to jump up; let’s face it, my “jump-up” probably hasn’t worked for decades. I remember that sand volleyball incident that happened some half-dozen years back, when the leap I planned to make somehow fell short of where the ball was, and what I know I could have done – thirty-five years earlier.

If you pay attention, throughout your life you’ll find your own signs that you’re not as young as you feel (by and large, I still FEEL like I’m in my twenties – but that’s a feeling in my brain, not so much in my body.) I remember a company softball game when I was 28 in which I was running all over the place, succeeding at everything I tried. And then the softball game the next year when I seemed to have crossed some magical threshold, and nothing worked (I even hurt my back so I couldn’t stand straight after our first practice.)

Of course, I might have been able to extend my “youth” if I engaged in some sort of physical exercise, but I’ve never been much for that – I used to run a lot just for fun when I was around 20, but other than a half-dozen, short-lived attempts at an exercise regimen, I’ve stayed fairly inactive for most of my adult life (and that’s a long, long time), so I get to gauge how my “mortality” is progressing by observing changes during occasional events at work, or weekly activities around the house.

Like taking down the Christmas lights. I didn’t feel like I was working hard at all during the hour I was outside, but once I came in and began boxing things up, I realized I was a little out of sorts. I felt a twinge in my lower back no matter what position I tried to sit in, and my right knee doesn’t like me to twist it at all (this irritation appeared Christmas week, evidenced by discomfort when I tried to sit cross-legged on the floor; WHAT ON EARTH IS A HEXAGENERIAN DOING SITTING CROSS-LEGGED ON THE FLOOR, you may ask? Because there wasn’t a chair, and why not, I’m not THAT OLD, am I?)

So this weekend, between my back, trying not to twist my right knee (someone told me the way you know you’re old is when you realize which knee is going to be your bad one; what do they know? They’re in their twenties!) and the tightness of the calcified achilles in my left ankle that’s had me limping for eight months (that therapy didn’t fix, and I’m hoping will get better eventually because I don’t want a surgery that will incapacitate me for six weeks), I’ve been hobbling around the house and feeling my age (No, I’m not – this is SOMEONE ELSE’S age.)

What to do? I could start exercising, but it will have to be low-impact – an exercise bike, or walking, or such. And I need to lose the thirty pounds I’ve gained back in the last two years – it took me six months back then to lose those that thirty pounds, let’s see how long it takes this time.)

There are also other tricks you can use to make yourself feel younger. I remember a story in a book by a casting agent, who talked about the rehearsals of Becket. Sir Lawrence Olivier was playing the title role, and every day in rehearsal he wore a harness that severely restricted his movements, and made the casting agent think they had made a dreadful mistake, because Olivier was moving around on the stage like an old cripple, but once rehearsals were over and the performances began, the harness was set aside, and Olivier became decades younger, and full of youthful energy, probably due to his newfound freedom. He felt younger because he lost the impediments.

You’re as young as you feel? That’s not good enough – I want to be younger than that. All I have to do is lose MY impediments. Just saying…


My next ePub release date is on January 19th – less than two weeks. Waiting to see whether “Out of Place”, “Cellfishness” or “Breathing is Overrated” returns from market first.


SleepWithTheSnowmenCoverWilliam Mangieri’s writing – including his latest ePublication “Sleep with the Snowmen” – can be found in many places, including:
• Smashwords:
• His Amazon Author page:
• Barnes & Noble:
• Createspace (if you prefer physical books):
• His site on WordPress:
• “William Mangieri’s Writing Page” on Facebook at:
• His Goodreads author page:
• Or on twitter: @WilliaMangieri

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