Act your age, damn it!

It was about 15 years ago. I still lived in the city and was at the climbing gym with a friend. As we were trying to climb our routes, we were surrounded by a kid’s birthday party with 20 rambunctious climbers scrambling around frantically.

I noticed all the parents sitting on the sidelines watching, and I said to my friend, “Why don’t these people climb with their kids instead of watching, what’s wrong with old people?

She quickly commented that she knew a bunch of these parents and told me that I was actually older than them. Apparently, in my mid 30’s, I related better to the kids than their parents.

These days I periodically get people in the shop explaining that they can’t ride the hard core stuff anymore, because “I’m pushing 40” or “I have kids now and responsibilities” or “I’m old and my body doesn’t recover as quickly.”

I have to admit, now that I am in my 50’s and I have kids, responsibilities, and a body that hurts, there are days I think maybe I should act my age and slow down a bit. But what does “act your age” really mean?

Should I act as society dictates a 50 year old guy should? Am I locked into what 50-year-old men acted like generations ago? Or, can I dictate what 50 should look like?

As I roll up to a big steep rock face on my mountain bike, I never think about what an old man would do in this situation, I don’t contemplate how my responsibilities will be handled if I crash, and I don’t think about my kids being disappointed in me for not “acting my age”. I think about the best line choice and I find my best chance at success, then I ride, just like I did 20 years ago.

I’m pretty sure I don’t act my age, and I don’t plan on starting any time soon. Maybe when ‘m 70 I’ll act 50 … but probably not.

I’m James Durand and I ain’t dead yet…

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Weekly RCMP update: Bike thefts and persistent driving while prohibited

Campbell River RCMP detachment seeing bicycle theft as an ongoing concern

Over 21 Campbell River tourism businesses benefit from resiliency program

Vancouver Island Tourism Resiliency Program is helping businesses pivot and adapt to the COVID-19 imposed changes in industry

NIC online marine training accessed by mariners across the country

NIC was among the first post-secondary schools to receive approval for digital marine courses

Search for missing hiker suspended once again

Search for Laurence Philippsen was revived over the weekend after new information was received

NIC practical nursing students hone skills on pandemic’s front line

‘It also has become clear that this is my thing,’ – NIC practical nursing student Breanna Patterson

Recent surge in COVID-19 cases not unexpected amid Phase Three of reopening: B.C.’s top doc

Keep circles small, wear masks and be aware of symptoms, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

Baby raccoon rescued from 10-foot deep drainage pipe on Vancouver Island

‘Its cries were loud, pitiful and heartbreaking,’ Saanich animal control officer says

Mirror business directory and map

If you’d like to be added to the list, shoot us an email

Statistical flaws led to B.C. wolf cull which didn’t save endangered caribou as estimated

Study finds statistical flaws in an influential 2019 report supporting a wolf cull

Windows broken, racist graffiti left on Okanagan home

Family says nothing like this has happened since they moved to Summerland in 1980s

Beloved Island woman dies at 106

Dorothy Adair adored by the many people she met in Chemainus in two short years

Man arrested for allegedly pushing unsuspecting seniors, jumping on cars at Parksville mall

Cops arrest man after ‘aggressive incident’ at Wembley Mall in Parksville

B.C. man who went by ‘Doctor Ray Gaglardi’ charged with sex assault of teenage boys

The man, 75, is accused of assaulting teenage boys he met through Coquitlam-area churches

B.C.’s potential deficit $12.5 billion as spending spikes, taxes drop

Finance Minister Carole James gives COVID-19 outlook

Most Read