Sometimes It's Better To Think Forward

Published 3:55 pm Friday, August 13, 2010

Have you ever had a particular yearning for a moment in life that's passed?

I suppose, if we're all honest (those of us who are a little further down the road than our youthful counterparts) the answer can only be “yes.”

Several years ago, the wife and I visited the Washington Redskins training camp at Frostburg, Maryland, for example. The football atmosphere, admittedly, got to me a little bit and, whether there was something in the summer breeze or some sort of rekindled warm and fuzzy feeling from my youth, for a few brief moments I missed suiting up myself.

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It was, I must emphasize, a soon-to-be passing feeling as a safety brought any such nonsense to an end cleaning the clock of a receiver daring to cross through the safety's coverage turf.


Talk about a de-cleater.

No, watching such collisions is much more to my liking now than being on the giving or, especially, the receiving end of such.

Sure, there are plenty of areas in life I would love to have a do-over in, but it's those happy moments, those off-the-chart thrill days that paint such a rosy mental picture and draw from the not-quite empty well of our soul's past.

So if something akin to turning the clock back were even remotely possible, just where might you go?

Perhaps on a roller coaster ride?

There's nothing quite like feeling that you're going to float out of your seat and free fall from skyscraper height, while losing your stomach in the process.

For a time, we-the wife and some close friends and I-would take on some great coasters. Wooden ones, a stand-up one, even the free-swinging variety, it was all in the fun.

That was then, of course and I'm not really good at the coaster stuff any more. I suppose I'm beyond coasting and am resting at a stop sign at the intersection of life at middle age road.

I actually can't say I'd like to turn the clock back on this one. It seems so long ago now for me-like another person. Nowadays, I can get a bit unnerved taking the last step off the ladder onto the roof of the garage. I can still do it, but I don't like it-which is what I hope I can say about the roller coasters when my daughter wants to ride such contraptions.

For now, though, I'm too caught up in the seasons of life and the possible implications of “fall.”

No, I don't miss the thrill of the roller coaster, but I do miss other things like shuffling through the gears of a four-speed Firebird. Now that takes me back to something I would like to do again.

The car had this wonderful sound even sitting still. I'm so there, as I close my eyes. I can hear the hum of the V-8 percolating in perfect musical tune as I write.

Of course, what I drive now gets superior gas mileage and is more comfortable, but it's just not the same. Even if the car isn't the same any more and I'm not as trim as I once was I can still enjoy the car through my mind's eye.

Hold on. Wait. I think I'll go back for another visit.