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I Can't Drive 55

I was coaching baseball, basketball, and football all in the same year—and two at the same time. I’m a big believer in involving the parents in the process as much as possible. (Keep your enemies closer?) This means I got to know some fascinating people. When I asked one dad if he would like to go out in the outfield and shag fly balls during batting practice, he declined.

I later learned he was a touring drummer and in a couple of punk bands I had actually heard of. At the time we met he was 56 and I was 50. He told me that fifty years-old is like hitting 100,000 miles on the odometer in your car—things start to go. He then said, it was the age of 55 that he really felt old. This stuck with me.

Sure enough when I hit 55 I started so notice things I couldn’t do anymore. For one, I can’t beat the kids in any sports like in years past. I’m also a little slower on the drums. In softball, I was moved to first base (which I love, but it felt like a demotion). Is it because I had it in my head that I would start to “feel it” at age 55, or is that the time when we all taper off?

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