Thoughts of a Childless, Middle-aged Man

I don’t have children.  I don’t want children.  I have no problem with children, and you may have as many as you like.

As a married 38 year old man I have had to answer this question constantly.  “Why don’t you have any children?”  I am sure this question has come up for Sara more often; when you have been married for a number of year’s people assume that there must be something wrong with either yourself or your spouse.  Some people are built to be mothers and fathers.  Enjoy every aspect of it.  And others *insert a picture of Sara and I giving the thumbs up* are not.

I am sure that this was a more difficult conversation decades ago.  Sara and I haven’t had that tough of a time with it.  Most people can see the type of personality that we have as a couple, and know that having a child would probably rip at every fabric that makes us tick.  The pressures seem to come mainly from a couple of different areas from me internally.  Needing somebody that I can live vicariously through, and needing somebody to carry on my name or legacy.

These are two things that can go in the nice to have category, but cannot be used to pull the trigger so to speak.  Sure, it would be great if I had a little boy that was instantly 12 years old and absolutely loved baseball, golf, and hockey.  Was a straight “A” student, extremely popular without being a douche, and went on to be successful in every single aspect of his entire life.  Just came straight out of the womb like that.  Sign me up for that exchange program.  Trading in Donald Trump for that scenario would be ideal.

There are other reasons why bearing children does not interest me.  I have no interest in raising anybody into this world that we have created.  It’s an utter mess.  Violence of course, but more importantly ignorance in both religion and global warming.  If you had a car with a tire that had a 3 inch hole in it and there were no other tires available.  Would you drive the car, and think to yourself “that hole won’t get any bigger.”  Or would you attempt to summon somebody from the sky that possibly doesn’t exist to give you a new tire.”  Or, the third option.  Give up a small amount of your empire to try to seal the hole in the tire?

As I grow older it’s strange.  You expect to have that moment when everything just clicks.  Knowing exactly what needs to be done to allow a 60 year old Daryl everything that he could possibly desire.  This moment hasn’t struck yet.  The set plan that I see on every Freedom 55 commercial is the following.  “Yeah, saving 25% of my $100,000/year job is easy.  Retirement is right around the corner.”  Unfortunately, many people are working multiple jobs to make ends meet for their $500,000 mortgage on that 2 bedroom bungalow that was half of that price 5 years ago.

There is another issue.  The rat-race is real when you get that first grown-man job.    Maybe it’s immaturity or maybe it’s boredom of the everyday.  I just don’t have a set schedule.  To come home every day and follow up on the latest seasons of the 9 different shows that I am currently watching sounds like an absolute nightmare to me.  And now that I have a 9-5 Monday-Friday grown up job I feel myself falling into this pattern.  It’s terrifying.  Is this the beginning of my middle-aged boredom?

What’s next?  Coming up on 40, don’t have kids to keep myself occupied.  Many of you that do have kids would just love a few hours of free-time.  Hearing a DINK (dual income no kids) describe his issues of having too much free time must really grind your gears.  Can you let me get back to my middle-aged whining now?  Geez, so selfish.   It’s the complete opposite side of the spectrum.  Sara and I are fairly active, but my tendency to not be able to relax can drive her crazy at times.  There are instances where I swear that she wishes that I had too much to drink the night before so my need for activities would slow down.

Even though I don’t have any answers whatsoever I still try new things out to fill the hole.   Is this the canyon that people constantly try to fill with children?  Maybe it is.  Some people fill it with alcohol or drugs.  Others fill it with sports and volunteering.  I don’t have a passion.  There are many things that I enjoy doing, and I feel that I am a well-rounded person – is there a pie chart of things that will keep me occupied and content?

Most of this is a ramble.  Confusion of a middle-aged, middle-classed, childless male that would like somebody to access his brain to create a calendar of events for the next 25 years of his life.  If I only had an extremely wonderful event planner that worked in that area of my brain.

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone.  This is one holiday that I absolutely adore.

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Going Back in Time with Will Ferrell

Even as the words came out of my mouth I knew that they didn’t make any sense.  “I thought Sausage Party would be a little bit wittier and smarter.”  It’s called Sausage Party.  Why would I think that?

The golf clubs might be hung up for another year.  They went out with a high, and it’s very unlikely that they will strike the ball that well for the rest of the year.  It’s called the George Castanza. You go out on top, and don’t look back.  The high for me is shooting an 84.

If you uttered or thought the comment “was that on 9”; you have no shot in the stand-up comedy scene.  Any laugh that you receive on that joke is called a pity laugh, and most people hope that you go away after saying it.

I was notified today by Sara that there are people drilling holes in new iPhone 7 thinking that there headphones would work after this was done.  These people should be put down.

Trump and Hillary have a debate coming up this weekend.  The person on the news believes that Trump is more likely to say something that will hurt his chances than Hillary.  On the contrary.  He could state that blowing up the moon with laser cats is a good idea, and he wouldn’t lose one supporter.

Sausage Party – 5.6/10

Where has the smart humor gone?  There hasn’t been a solid comedy that has come out in a few years.  They actually usually coincide with the good of Will Ferrell and every time Wes Anderson releases a flick.

There is new music to talk about as well.  Have you been missing the sounds of Echo and the Bunnymen?  No, or never heard of them?  Well, move on.  If your answer was yes.  Then have a listen to the self-titled album by the Preoccupations.  It’s one of the first solid albums of 2016.

Our Lady Peace and I Mother Earth are playing Halloween night at Centre in the Square.  Rumors are that when the clock strikes 10pm on Halloween night with these two bands and their original line up together that every fan will be transported to a half-price flannel sale in 1995.

Sunday morning is excellent for banana pancakes and the largest coffee that you can possibly find.  You will have a weird sugar and caffeine high clutching your pro-line tickets watching the clock with anticipation until 1pm when football starts. You will then hit a wall at 1pm after you come down from the high, and probably have a nap at 1:47pm watching a scoreless Bills/Cardinals game.

I am debating buying goaltending equipment to begin to play hockey again.  Then I remember how much damn equipment that you need to be a goalie.  I also remember how much getting hit in the groin by a puck hurts.  You always have that guy that’s on your team in warmups that wants to show how hard his slap-shot is from the hash marks.  He never knows where it’s going, and his laugh is similar to a stoned Seth Rogen.  Even after saying all of this I have opened 3 Kijiji ads for hockey equipment.

As we watch the Blue Jays march towards that Wild Card Playoff game remember that getting to the playoffs is a fu**ing difficult thing to do as a mid-market team in the AL East.  Enjoy every moment of it.

Overrating NHL Goaltenders

With tonight being game one of the Stanley Cup Finals I thought I would write about the overrating of number one goaltenders in the NHL.

Things have changed over the years in hockey. In years past you could always count on your number one goaltender to steal game after game. Goaltenders such as Patrick Roy, Martin Brodeur, Carey Price, and Henrik Lundqvist were staples needed to win a cup. Detroit seemed to be one of the first teams to debunk this myth. They rode a hot Mike Vernon and a mediocre Chris Osgood to Stanley Cup victories. Now you are seeing the same thing with Corey Crawford. His numbers are good. But would you consider Corey Crawford to be an elite goaltender?

It’s all about the system that is played in front of the team. If you have a team that plays a very good puck possession and defensive game you can nearly put anybody back in net and they will look like a star. If you take the Los Angeles Kings for example. Even when Jon Quick isn’t in net, the backups have very similar numbers. Could Ben Scrivens have won a cup if he was the starter? I am not sure that we can go that far, but it’s a debate that you could have. How did Ilya Bryzgalov fair when he was removed from the Phoenix Coyotes trap system? He can answer that after he is finished counting his cash from his buyout.

There isn’t a huge difference between a star net-minder and a decent one. There are multiple coaches that seem to ride the hot hand. Just look at what Chicago did in these current playoffs. They had no problem with starting Scott Darling for a couple of games just to see what he could do. This is what happens when you have a fantastic team in front of you. The one goaltender in the NHL currently that can win a series by himself seems to be Carey Price. I believe that you can replace every other goaltender in the NHL. Have you ever noticed that European goaltenders will come out of nowhere and steal the show? Antti Niemi, Pekka Rinne, and Frederik Andersson to name a few. There is such a slim margin between net-minders in the NHL now.

The days of the 7-8 million dollar contracts over 7 or 8 years for goaltenders is probably over. Sometimes you witness the burden of the contract to great for the player. Jimmy Howard is somewhat going through that now. Roberto Luongo just went through that in Vancouver. It doesn’t matter how great your stats are in the regular season. The team that is paying you big money, and expects you to carry them throughout the playoffs as well. How many years did we witness a Vancouver Canucks team that couldn’t score, and were eliminated from the playoffs early? Luongo would take the blame.

The best NHL teams now have a system in place that all is required from the goaltender is a few key saves. Just don’t let in the big goal. They don’t need to be spectacular. Just good enough for the team to stay in the game. We are seeing this year after year. And we will probably continue to see it even more in the years to come. Coming from a Philadelphia Flyers fan this is going to sound weird, but goaltenders are expendable.