Advice for the Middle-Aged

When you're as old as I am, and although I'd like to say I'm older than dirt I don't really know where some of this dirt has been so I'd be reluctant to speak on its behalf, you tend to overlook some of the things you took for granted when you were young. You start not noticing some of the things about yourself that you don't really want to notice. You don't notice that when you look in the mirror that the six-pack abs that once adorned your frame have turned into something between a bubba and a keg. You don't notice that when you're ogling those pretty dancers that they might not be laughing with you. You will notice that your wife will still smack you. Those are mostly unavoidable.

Another thing you don't notice are the bizarre things that happen to yourself. If you keep getting headaches when you're setting up camp or out there on the main battlefield, it might not be because your campmates are just watching you work or because guys in blue tape are repeatedly smacking you in the head with blunt objects. You really need to watch your water intake, particularly if you don't normally get off your couch much or live in climates like I do which are more amenable to cross-country skiing and ice fishing than cooking the camp breakfast on your new armor. You never know when the great curse of Pennsic will strike. No, I'm not talking about the little blonde in the next camp who smiled at you. Remember what I wrote earlier. The great curse is dehydration. Please, make sure you're drinking something out of your water cooler and not always out of your beer cooler. The beer can wait.

A few days ago one of my best friends went down with the heat pretty bad, bad enough that he ended up in the hospital. When you're at Pennsic, you need to be spending your time at Pennsic, not down the road at the hospital. You can't see the dancers from Butler Memorial. And isn't that why we're all here in the first place?

Remember, I'm pulling for you. We're all in this together.