This is a prompt I gave to Fast approaching middle age in a comments section. It was, specifically, “14 things I do well, now that I’m old enough to get it”, whether “it” is practice, space, time, or whatever else comes with getting to certain ages. I wouldn’t go back to my 20’s if you paid me. Well, I’m sure there is some amount that I would accept, but it would be a staggering quantity of money.
That being said, my own list of a completely arbitrary number of things:
- I turn out to be a very good swimmer. I’d forgotten about that. Splashless front crawl. 750 m last week, aiming for 900 this week.
- I can cut straight lines with a circular saw, although the table saw is going to make the work much easier. Rip cuts, here I come. I’ve done rip cuts with the circular saw, but it is not one of my preferred activities.
- I can encourage other people to do things that they are afraid of, gently. Or fiercely, when required.
- I can pull together a multi-course dinner in a couple of hours and make everything arrive on the table at the same time.
- I can plan the logistics for the entire family and turn on a dime when one of us gets last minute call for work.
- I make really good coffee. Which is awesome, because I might have a teeny, tiny coffee problem.
- I was a thoughtful and skilled educational developer who pushed faculty to do their very best at aligning teaching and assessment with their educational philosophy AND best practices in university teaching. (oooh. Does that sound like it came off my resume, or what?)
- I’m a good driver.
- Oh. I can’t tell you that one. This is a mostly g-rated blog. Also, my mother reads it.
- I can grow onions from seed. Actually, I’m getting good at growing all kinds of things from seed. Seeds are one of the most magical things I can think of. I am totally in love with seeds.
- I give awesome conference. Love people, love ideas. Love the free exchange of ideas. Love talks, questions, papers, conversation, coffee and beer. Really, I am at my best at conferences.
- I can sit with difficult emotional situations without trying to fix them.
- I can remain open to the possibility of being wrong without failing to take a stand somewhere in the meantime.
- I can string words together in ways that communicate meaning, make people think, make people smile, and invite others to do the same.
So, do you want to join in the game? 14 things you do well because you are old enough to get it. Or just because you do them well. In the comments, in your blog, on Facebook, in your paper journal, wherever… Go!