On the plane to Italy! (STILL playing Ultimate frisbee…)

I’m flying to Venice, Italy in route to the 2011 World Championships of Beach Ultimate. Recalling the words of my late Uncle’s Orval and O’Garlan at Christmas reunions: “Raaandy, you still playing that Friizz-bee?”, I stop to ponder why I’m one of the only 52 year olds on Earth that is STILL “playing that frisbee.”

Could it be that there truly is something wrong with me? After all, 90% of my teammates have hung up their cleats long ago.

Peter Pan syndrome, refusing to grow old, childish immaturity? No way! Just still having fun. It’s the “if you don’t use it, you lose it” theory.

To think that my Uncle’s asked that question in the late 80’s, and that here it is almost a half-life later, and I’m sitting in First Class, seat 1-A, bound for Philadelphia, then Venice, Italy— all to chase, catch and throw a spinning plastic toy–well, I suppose it is a fair question that deserves consideration.

And while I’m not sure down-deep just what the real answer is, the long, detailed answer that Jung or Freud would arrive at only after hundreds of hours of psychotherapy; I do know what the short answer is:

It’s still fun. A LOT of fun.

Further entangling the issue, I recall the words of orthopedic surgeon and fellow Florissant Valley Christian Church member Dr. Donald Brancato, after I consulted him with a painful knee in 1986:

“You should stop playing that sport.”

Sorry, doc, but I must be addicted, and my body must be defying logic and science.
Sorry, Uncle Orval and Uncle O’Garlan, but dang it, I’m STILL playing.
When you’re lucky enough that your body still allows you to play the game you love; when it’s still as much fun as it ever was; when you’re fortunate enough to have been a captain and/or leader of 6 National Championship/ World Championship teams— not to mention scores of Regional Championships, Summer and Spring League championships and so on–well, why would you quit?

I’ll know when it’s time. That’s what I’m trusting.

Thanks for reading. :):)

This entry was posted in Randy's Writing and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.