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February 21, 2011

Hope I Die Before I Get Old

You may know that I moonlight over at Man of The House. One of my fellow MoTH writers, Josh Katzowitz, wrote a piece a few days ago that got me thinking about my age, and whether or not I act it. It inspired the following post:)

Conventional wisdom says that if you are a dad, you need to set aside foolish/dangerous activities for the sake of your children. Before I had kids, I did plenty: I was an avid surfer, a frequent rock climber, solo backpacker, rugby player and a pseudo-adrenaline junkie. I also went to a lot of Phish concerts, partied in bars until the wee hours and generally behaved like a beach-dwelling twenty-something well into my thirties.

Several years ago, I went through a Harley Obsession. Many guys do; few of those guys have wives who tacitly approved of adding a big V-Twin to the family. My wife did not encourage me, but she didn’t put up much resistance. She bought my logic: Harleys are safer because they’re easier to ride than “Crotch Rocket”-style street bikes, they’re bigger (thus easier for car drivers to see), and they come with a built-in collision avoidance warning system – their signature deafening engines. She wasn’t a Harley fan so much as a fan of the cool leather jacket she’d need to buy in order to be able to ride with me. I’d never ridden a motorcycle, so I did my research: there was a Motorcycle Rider’s School nearby, and my friends who owned Harleys assured me that riding them, once you got the hang of it, was fun and easy. (I didn’t think too much about the notion of “getting the hang” of riding a machine that weighs several hundred pounds, can reach speeds of 80+ mph, and only has two wheels.) I knew the model I wanted: the Heritage Softail. I took a few trips to Harley dealers, sat on the thing, and imagined myself rumbling up the Pacific Coast Highway, the wind in my face.

(You can find out how this all turns out over here. After you finish, pop on back - I wanna hear from you dads out there, and their Significant Others, about why you do or don't wanna grow up.)




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