As I get older, I find myself telling younger humans how quickly time passes. "The older you get, faster it goes," my parents warned me, and when I tell others that this is one of the actual truths conveyed by parents, they tend to nod in agreement.
More to the point, every day I get up and look in the mirror, seeing myself another day older, wondering, "how did this happen and where did the time go?"
Mind you, I have no desire to go back an redo any particular part of my life, and I am totally happy with my present age and place in the universe. But, yesterday I read that former Tigers third sacker Steve Boros passed away, and that Harmon Killebrew had been diagnosed with esophageal cancer. Boros was 74, the same age as Killebrew.
I remember so vividly, as a kid, pouring over my baseball cards, much the same as six or so years later, when I would similarly pour over the artwork and liner notes of the parade of albums the bands of the late 60's, trying to understand every detail of the music and perhaps some key to existence.
Similarly, the numbers on the back of the card spoke to me. Of course there were the statistics, but there was also the cartoon, often an abstract or bulleted list of highlights, and then, the essentials. Height. Weight. Place of Birth. And, DOB.
Since both Boros and Killebrew were players when I was ten, they were 16 years older than I. And, I had cause to meet Killebrew once, at a signing, but I spoke with Boros, who later became the Athletics manager, a few times, as that was when I was just beginning to write about baseball. And, I always carried a soft spot for Boros, who was a fan of literature.
Anyway, as each season passed, that age gap between the players closed until eventually major league players were my contemporaries. Now, on the verge of a new year, with Hot Stove talk all about and mock drafts popping up hither and yond, that age gap increases by yet another year.
I find it funny now that instead of simply looking to be the same age as the major leaguers, it has pass on to players who were born when I finished high school, to those born when I finished Graduate School, to when my son was born, and so on. In fact now I am easily old enough to be a grandfather to the latest wave of new comers, born in the 90's.
It has been a wild ride, but I would not trade it for anything. I wish Hammerin' Harmon the best, and hope he feels the same way. I surely hope Boros did, too.
With that the Mastersblog is taking a few days off for the New Year. My best to all of you for a wonderful, safe, and especially warm and dry 2011, start to finish.