Al Campbell, Field Editor

May 27th, 2002

You're Getting Old When
By Al Campbell

I seem to be getting old. Not real old by my current standards, but if I consider the standards I had when I was in high school; I'm getting old. It's pretty rough to realize that I'm aging, and it managed to sneak up on me pretty fast.

I don't feel very old, that is unless you count aches and pains, but I do have some of the symptoms associated with passing over the top of the proverbial hill. Don't know what those symptoms are? I'll list some of them for you.

For those who are approaching this age, these are warnings. For those who are starting to experience these symptoms, this is a test. If you're older than that, these are fond memories. Anyway, here are some common indicators that you're getting old.

  • A double haul better describes how many trips it takes to load a fly rod and vest into your vehicle than your casting technique.

  • You actually use those little boxes you find at the pharmacy for pills; not as alternate fly boxes.

  • Flipping those little magnifiers down from the bill of your cap is less embarrassing than the time it takes to tie a fly to the leader if you don't.

  • You have to read this with your head tipped back so your bi/tri-focals will focus on the proper line of text.

  • You examine your fly rod more than once a day because you heard something crack, and you aren't sure it was just another one of your leg or arm joints.

  • The volume you crank up most often is on a little dial in your ear, rather than on the dash of your car.

  • The bumper sticker on your car says "death before;" but the word "disco" is crossed out and the word "rap" is inserted.

  • You handle more pills in a week than flies in a month.

  • You spend more time discussing strategy with your doctor than you do with the local fly shop owner.

  • "Tying one on" refers to the impossible task of connecting a fly to the leader, rather than how hard you partied last night.

  • You have more hair growing out of your ears and nose than you have growing out of the top of your head.

  • You spend more time counting your heartbeats than you spend counting fish after that long hike to a remote lake.

  • Getting lucky refers to finding a good parking spot on the stream so you don't have to walk so far.

  • You take your teeth out more often than your wife.

  • Having anything happen on a regular basis is reason to celebrate.

  • You're old enough to know the proper names of all the flies, but you don't remember which name goes with which fly.

  • You select alternate forms of fishing gear based on the skill level of your grandchildren rather than your desire to catch more or bigger fish.

  • They make fly rods out of graphite now? I thought that was the stuff they used for pencil leads.

  • You can remember when "good" was good, and "bad" was bad.

  • Everything was bigger and better "back then."

  • The only thing that's still the same as it was "back then" is your fishing gear.

  • You can remember when food items were selected for their taste, rather than how easy they are to chew.

  • The "spread" you're most concerned about has nothing to do with a sports score.

  • A "four minute mile" refers to how long it takes to get into the car and drive that far.

  • "Going fast" better describes your eyesight than how quickly you drive your car.

  • You spend more time in the doctor's office than you do on the stream.

  • Your grandson had to show you how to use that computer thing.

  • A "monitor" more accurately describes something you wear to keep track of vital functions than something you look into.

  • You read Castwell's column twice because you can't remember reading it the first time.

    And, this last one isn't supposed to be funny, but it is appropriate for this week.
  • You have many very personal reasons for observing Memorial Day.

    God bless you all, and please practice safe recreation this weekend. I want to see you all back here next week. ~ AC

  • Previous Al Campell Columns

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