Thursday, October 31, 2013

You Know You're Old When...Thanks Big Pappi and Stan Bowman

At some point in time, every single one of us knows how to respond to the prompt "You know you're old when...." Two championship games this past year have helped me realize and accept the passing of my youth with humility, confidence and maybe even a smile. Sigh.
He's no Jamie Moyer, but at 38....
Thanks to the World Series I can now say....You know you're old when you're cheering for the old guy, simply because he's old. i.e. your age. 

As fans showered David Ortiz with love, praise and maniacal cheers for his offensive explosion throughout the World Series, I took delight in the fact that "Big Papi" is 38. Granted, he plays DH which is less physically demanding than any other position in baseball, but he hit the curve, took it deep, and serves as a reminder that athletes in their late 30s still got it. Ortiz is the third oldest World Series MVP and I love him for it.

I still remember Bowman wore a faded Detroit Redwings hat
Thanks to the Stanley Cup, I can now say....You know you're old when your peer is the GM of the team. 

I remember when every professional athlete was nearly double my age. Then along came some young folk who found success quite early—Jennifer Capriati, Michael Chang, Ken Griffey, Jr. to name a few. During my time at Notre Dame, I realized some of my own classmates would pursue athletics beyond school; they would and did attempt to making a living at it. Those were good years. Watching people roughly my age inspired me to train and compete harder. Then the numbers and the clock caught up. Now I am almost double the age of the men and women on the field. My peers' careers have slowly and subtly come to an end due to injury, fatigue, new talent, etc. Steve Nash who is exactly one week older than me is holding on...Thank you!

This past spring, I was amazed to read "Chicago Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman fittingly is the architect of the franchise's second NHL championship in four years because he's named after the Stanley Cup (Kevin Allen)" Bowman was a year ahead of me at Notre Dame! 

I still remember seeing him and his buddies from Keenan in North Dining Hall. We knew that his father, Scotty Bowman, was a professional coach. Little did we know that the Bowman legacy would live on in this way. It's one thing when your peers are the athletes; it's another when they work in the front office. Dang, we're old.

It should go without saying however, age is just a number. As affirmed in Genesis 24:1 Abraham was old, having seen many days, and the Lord had blessed him in every way. The next Chapter says that he died at 175! I have often wondered about those numbers... For example, Deuteronomy 34:7 says Moses was one hundred and twenty years old when he died, yet his eyes were undimmed and his vigor unabated. Way to go Moses!

I try to never lose sight of the fact that life is a gift and with age, comes wisdom and increased perspective. Furthermore, the Boston Red Sox and Chicago Blackhawks couldn't have done it without my peers and "In the end, it's not the years in your life that count, but the life in your years." (Abraham Lincoln).  Amen.

Photo Credits
Stan Bowman

David Ortiz

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