Taryn Lawson

It’s come to my attention I’m only going to live to be 66 years old. It’s a little alarming; I was hoping for two more decades — no more, no less.

Whereas I’ve encountered plenty of people enjoying life in their nineties, I already have joint pain, which doesn’t bode well for my shot at joining their mystifying ranks.

I think I started to de-mystify it once, longevity. In the course of interviewing folks for various Crescent-News articles, I asked three separate people over the age of 98, “To what do you attribute your incredible longevity?” and at some point in our discussions, all three of them mentioned eating fruit.

Listen, I’m not a scientist, or a dietician, or even a person who’s going to make it past the too-young age of 66, tragically, all I know is, it stood out to me, the fruit thing. Do with that information what you will.

The age at which I’ll fall off my perch revealed itself this week when I had a mid-life crisis. I’m 33, so...66. There it is. It didn’t feel like a mid-life crisis when I was having it, but I suspect they rarely do.

For my birthday, I got a mint green bicycle — the beach-cruiser sort with a basket on the front and a spot for my coffee — and decided I would start riding it about town.

When a skill is tough to lose, we say it’s “just like riding a bike.” I don’t know who coined the saying or how many years spanned between their bike rides, but we need to scrap that expression and start over.

When I was a kid, the bike was more utilitarian than recreational. I’d ride to the library, then ride back home with a sack of books on each handlebar.

I’d ride to the service station, then ride back home balancing precariously while eating banana soft serve. There was always a goal bigger than the bike ride itself. The bike was just a means to an end.

And clearly, it wasn’t the most efficient one, because later in life, driving presented itself as an option and I took it, enthusiastically. Never looked back.

Until now.

My daughter got a new bike when she turned 10 in May, and since then, she’s been itching to take to the sidewalks of Defiance. In truth, I got my own bike at least in part so I could follow her around and make sure she doesn’t land me in small-claims court.

I think my days of being cool to hang out with are numbered, and I’m determined to make the most of them, even if it means collapsing a foot arch.

On our inaugural ride, which occurred during a break in the rain, she wanted us to return to the spot where she’d seen some fiberglass marbles and haul a few home.

We put 10 in my bike basket, and for the sake of not disclosing too much about what hurt and where, I’ll say “things were going just fine,” until I hit a chunk of uneven pavement, sending the marbles flying out in all directions

Things look a lot different from a bike. If you used to ride one around as a kid, but haven’t for a long, long while, consider giving it a try, if only for the flashbacks...

We cruised around for about 45 minutes before a light rain started up again and we decided to head home.

A block from our destination, my pedal essentially fell off, causing the aforementioned foot-arch issue. Just a short, down-hill stretch remained, so I coasted home.

We were inspecting the faulty screw on my pedal when my husband came up to ask about our bike ride.

My riding buddy flopped onto the wet grass in a fit of laughter.

“Mom lost her marbles, and now she has a screw loose...”

That sounds about right...

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