As I prepare to celebrate the start of my last year in what I’ll delicately call my “upper-early-forties,” I’ve decided to take a look back at some earlier posts on getting older to see what still holds up and what’s changed (along with adding a few new morsels).
Here’s the older stuff, if you want to catch up:
Let’s check in on a few of them:
“Having seen patterns on the Internet repeat over the years, I’m encouraged that people are waking up to the ‘didn’t we learn our lesson from AOL in the ‘90s’ current social media environment, and I’m feeling bullish for what comes next. I should note that my former boss Gina Bianchini has been ringing this bell for well over a decade.“
Well, I definitely took this one seriously. 💪
“I can no longer be home without immediately changing into sweatpants (my wife is disappointingly unenthusiastic about this).“
Changing…into…sweatpants? There are other types of pants?
“Nothing good can come from a webinar.”
Such innocence. Little did 2019 Kyle know that the entire world would soon become a webinar.
Some new developments:
- I tweeted about this a while back as well, but I’ve become alarmed at the number of tonics and miracle elixirs that are now part of my daily routine.
- Crappy, cushion-less chairs and I are no longer able to date each other.
- I’m too old to convincingly say or type any of the following phrases…
Bio Break: I’m just gonna say “going to the bathroom” (or nothing at all)
LOL: Yes I’ve hated this for decades, but now I’ve crossed the Rubicon and entered into “tragic grandpa lol” territory
Partner: I like/respect that this is a clean Gen Z way to refer to your significant other, but the ship has sailed for me being able to say “my partner” without sounding like a giant knob
Hooked Up: Ditto on this one, I’ll continue saying “slept with” over here at the retirement home
- Not only am I done with commuting, but the pandemic has taught me that in-person group meetings of many sorts should be treated like live theater: nice, old-fashioned, impractical but endearing “once-in-a-while” events.
- The past two years have been incredibly illuminating for me in terms of discovering how well people tolerate and adapt to change, and I’ve realized that I most respect those that become more and more curious (actively seeking out new points of view) as they age.
Last weekend my wife and I did a brief communion talk at our “new” (in COVID-adjusted terms) church, in which we touched on a few of the points I’d made in my Pit Stop post from a couple years back, surrounding this Bible passage:
Going on from that place, he went into their synagogue, and a man with a shriveled hand was there. Looking for a reason to bring charges against Jesus, they asked him, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?”
He said to them, “If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out? How much more valuable is a person than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.”
– Matthew 12:9-11 (NIV)
In a nutshell, the post commented on how painful it was to watch much of white American evangelicalism’s Pharisee-like slow-motion reaction to the continued rise of online misinformation, Christian nationalism/law enforcement hagiography and the ongoing need to address systemic racism and start repenting at the institutional level.
While there’s still an incredibly long way to go, we’ve been fortunate enough to have found a group that’s at least continually taking steps in the right direction and forcing these hard conversations, which I truly appreciate.
All that being said, 2022 keeps on 2022-ing, and the pit is getting more and more crowded. Let’s peer in at two recent additions, shall we?
- Buoyed by the current Supreme Court, states are playing around with some fairly terrifying anti-abortion laws, including Missouri, which floated (and seems to now be adjusting based on blowback) restrictions for women with very likely non-viable and potentially life-threatening ectopic pregnancies.
Don’t kid yourselves, these attempts will only get more and more brazen. Will evangelicals toe the party line and simply let women lose their rights and/or be forced to die, or will this be a time for a compassionate awakening and the start of real conversations about the history of abortion rights and conservative Christianity in America?
- As all sorts of restrictive laws around LGBTQ rights for minors continue to swirl around, will evangelicals be willing to open their minds (and churches, unlike this sad case) to those in the eye of the storm? Given the elevated suicide risk among these children, is it better to let them die or extend a helping hand in love?
There’s no shortage of overconfident evangelicals that will proudly quote their preferred interpretation of Bible passages as a way to whistle right past these sheep in the pit.
As for what Jesus himself would do? I have a pretty good guess, and it’s time to start loudly and publicly talking about it.
A tradition I’ve had since back in the before times is a yearly roundup of my (current) favorite things. As a refresher, here are the past installments:
Raindrops on Roses: Some of My Favorite Things (2018)
Whiskers on Kittens: More Favorites (2019)
‘Rona Recs (2020, apparently the emergence of the pandemic sucked the joy out of the song lyric theme)
Bright Copper Kettles: More Favorites (2021, sweet, the theme came back)
Here are the latest additions:
TCL 4K Roku TV: I forget which exact model/size, but this is all-in-one screen is my jam these days
Bombas Men’s Sunday Slipper: These have already changed my life
‘This is Fine’ Dog Vinyl Figure: For quick reference during these troubled times
Apple Leather Wallet with MagSafe: Love this thing, and love the minimizing that it forces
Echo Buttons: I slam one of these at night to turn off all of our bedroom lights, clearly impressing my wife each and every time (sadly I think they’ve been discontinued)
Analogue Pocket: A dream device
Some Random Cheap Ring Light: Works better than I expected, and keeps me from looking like I’m Zooming in from the underworld
Melatonin: Seems to help with the pandemic of it all
Logitech C920x HD Pro Webcam: My lifeline to the world
Knockoff ‘Purple’ Seat Cushion: Works decently for these old bones
Birkenstock Arizona EVA Sandals: These have generally replaced my beloved Crocs, which makes me…cooler?
Pure Enrichment MistAire Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier: If the humidifier won’t bring in the ladies…
Honest Amish Classic Beard Oil: …then the beard oil will!
Can’t get enough of this top-shelf content? I feel you. Subscribe for free!