Monday, February 08, 2010

The Inescapable Decline into Dust

Photos: Hryck, Flickr Creative Commons

I may actually be getting older. I don't remember it taking so long to loosen up my knees on the tennis court last year. I hobble around on stiff legs for about five minutes until the grease in the joint warms up and everything gets nice and lubed up. I've had to be careful with my footwork since I took up the sport again about three years ago. I step wrong and I'm punished with a stabbing pain in my knee. I'm a quick study, so I usually keep my feet under me and steady so I'll go hours of play without feeling it. I always know it's there, however. I think I screwed up my knee by sitting on my foot at work back at the newspaper right after college. Whatever the reason, my knees have been creaky and poppy and occasionally painful since I was 22.

I got old before I could rent a car. I think big people might be like big dogs. A great Dane is lucky to see its tenth birthday while a chihuahua is still going strong in its teens. Unfortunately, I have good genes. I'll be alive and in constant pain in my legs, back, and neck well into my 90s. Or maybe it's just the fact that I ate like shit last week. Country fried steak with rice and gravy, strip steak with balsamic cream sauce (although that was just with broccoli as a side), lasagna, fried chicken, and a giant freaking steak that took two days to eat. Most of those were various birthday meals, but the rest was me being a fat ass.

I spent this weekend doing stuff more appropriate for my advanced state of decay than play tennis or any of my other more active hobbies. Saturday was the first round of the Six Nations rugby tournament. BBC America is running one game a week for the duration of the tournament so I got to see England gradually snuff out Wales. Rugby kind of spoils American football for the me. You've got 40 minutes of commercial free action followed by halftime and then another 40 minutes without commercial breaks and that action is nearly continuous. They don't have downs in rugby so the only things that stops the action are the ball going out of bounds or a penalty. Watch too much rugby and all of the sudden football gets painfully choppy and slow. Luckily for me, the Super Bowl last night was a good game and seemed to fly by. I don't know the last time I've seen a game with such little input from the referees.

Football actually ended for me as a fan back in the first week of January. I'm passionate about college football, not just my favorite team. In the NFL, once the Falcons are done, I'm more or less done. I didn't even watch a playoff game until the NFC Championship Game. The Winter Olympics are another story entirely. I love all things Olympic. Bring on the curling! No, seriously, I actually love watching curling during the winter Olympics. Curling is awesome, especially if the Johnson sisters are on the US women's team this year. Straight women and gay men should probably stick to the hockey and speed skating ice, but I'll always have Cassie Johnson. Well, it's Porter now, but who cares.


Mickey said...

It was a good game. It felt like the two best teams played like it.

And I'm also very much down with some Olympics, except for the amount of air time given to figure skating. Hate it.

Jacob said...

Yeah, I hate figure skating (and the ice dancing crap). But, it's a huge ratings draw, so I suck it up know it's the main reason I get to watch the rest of the stuff I like. Basically, the figure skating pays for the curling.

Plus, considering there are like five stations carrying Olympic coverage, I'll usually just be able to switch over to another channel when figure skating is on. USA is carrying the curling, by the way.

Courtney said...

I love watching curling too! I actually want to try curling sometime. One of the skating rinks near our old place in Knoxville had curling night, but we never made it. I wish we had.

Julie said...

I like watching skating but maybe you can blame that on the fact that I am a girl. I don't know how much I'll see of the Olympics this year. I watch a lot of TV while doing something else (cooking, bills, etc.) downstairs and since the TV is still out down there, I'm way behind.

Chris said...

I hear you on the aching knees. Whenever I'm trying to get back into the swing of running after a period of inactivity (which is almost every time I run), my knees get pretty sore. But I've decided I would rather deal with the pains of being active than the pains of atrophy.

Jacob said...

The irony of this post is that I actually went running with one of my students yesterday. It was only about a quarter-mile, but I actually kept up with most of the players and even passed a couple of them who had a head start on me.

Of course, I ended up with an occasional rattling cough for about an hour afterward. I'm going to chalk that up the exercise breaking up the remnants of a chest cold I had thought ended a week ago instead of me being out of shape.