Is it happy hour yet?

It started in the summer of 1974 right around my eighteenth birthday. One particular day I sat in my car listening to WFLI, an AM radio station out of Chattanooga, Tennessee. That was when I heard a song that would affect my life from that day forward. I remember thinking that it was the greatest thing I had ever heard and that the DJ just had to announce the title and the singer. He did. The song was Come Monday and the singer was Jimmy Buffett.

I quickly bought up every Jimmy Buffett eight-track cassette…

I trimmed the shrubs.

Today I turned up the radio on the front porch and set a cold beer in the shade where I could easily reach it. Then I commenced to trim the shrubs. On the one hand it was a simple and routine event. On the other hand…well, on that hand, I extended a firm straightened middle finger into the face of the aging process.

You see, I chose to trim the shrubs with my old manual hedge clippers, in a heat index of 102 and at the age of 65. No electric or gas powered trimmers this…

I’m too polite to be skinny.

I grew up in the south where the cooks are very proud of their talents. To refuse a second helping of anything is to insult the cook in the worst possible way. Many times, a refusal of a second helping from my mother, grandmothers, aunts or even casual acquaintances has been met with, “What’s wrong? Don’t you like my cooking?”

I’m pretty sure this isn’t confined just to the south. I’ve dined with people from all parts of the country, who upon seeing me take my last mouthful, immediately tell me to help myself…

A natural disaster helps.

Imagine that you are standing in your living room gazing at your “stuff.” A wildfire is only ten miles away and the news reports say that it is moving in your direction. You have at the most 48 hours before you may have to evacuate. What do you take?

My wife and I were in that exact predicament just months after moving from coastal Georgia to Colorado. …

First, do no harm.

I recently received my Medicare card. As milestones go, it’s right up there with the appearance of grey hair and the first Viagra prescription. I can’t say that I was surprised to see it arrive in the mail. After all, my 65th birthday is right around the corner. But opening the envelope and seeing that red, white and blue card really brought home the fact that I am approaching the back end of my life.

If I follow my parents and grandparents example, I can count on another twenty to thirty years. That’s not bad. I’ll…

The Senior Olympics that is.

It used to be called the Senior Olympics. Now it’s known as the National Senior Games. If this conjures up an image of tottering geezers sedately playing shuffleboard for plastic trophies think again.

The National Senior Games is an Olympic-style event with competition in seventeen individual sports, three non-ambulatory sports and six team sports. Yes, shuffleboard is included along with more vigorous pursuits such as swimming, bicycling, track and field, basketball, volleyball, pickleball and soccer. Participants must be at least fifty years old and meet some pretty stiff qualifying standards. …

You are so right. I once read that the key to growing old gracefully is to always have something to look forward to. But I'm taking my sweet time getting to each of those things.

Yes, I’m talking to you.

Why do we drive each other nuts? It’s not enough that we have political rancor, religious disputes, social justice wars and climate change to stress us out; we also aggravate each other on a daily basis in so many little ways.

If you are looking for the answers to all of those big issues you won’t find them here. I’m just a simple guy living a simple life and trying really hard to not add more stress to anyone else’s day. There is very little I can do to have a major impact on most…

While living in Florida I rounded a turn in a trail to find an alligator that stretched from one side of the trail to the other. At least 10 feet long. I also watched a large hawk challenge a buzzard for some unidentified corpse. The hawk won.

It took over a year.

In November of 2020, I wrote about my year long rehab from a pinched nerve and the triumph of running an entire mile. A month later I wrote about making it to the milestone of running twice that distance. Today, I write about the most important milestone yet.

I made it to three miles. A slow three mile run, not on dramatic trails or beach, but in my suburban neighborhood just south of Nashville. It wasn’t the distance of this run or the pace or the location that made it a milestone. …

Micah Ward

Micah is a retiree who writes, runs, prays and enjoys craft beer in the rolling hills of central Tennessee. He goes to the ocean when he can.

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