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Lunds inner-child still loving life at 8 years old
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A not-so-scientific internet test revealed something others have had inklings about for some time.

I’m 8-years old.

Anytime I am lumped into a category I test its validity. I’m not one of those, I-don’t-care what-anybody-thinks types. From what I’ve experienced, those people care plenty, but just have a thicker shield aimed at self-preservation. I don’t care enough to let it bother me, but I am curious as to what type of character I might exude.

Anyway, I did an instant self-evaluation. Jeff at 8, and Jeff at almost 28. There were some stunning similarities. Camping, fishing, hiking and teasing my brother despite him being older – all still very fun. I cry less, have grown a couple feet, don’t have to draw armpit hair with a brown marker to make me look like a basketball player, and I have one of those college diploma things, so I’ve grown a bit.

But rocketing a good 1,300 BBs toward non-living targets over the weekend with two buddies (one 25, the other 19 according to the age revealer) was a definite check in the pre-teen category.

I’d like to think that I act older than eight on a consistent basis, what with my chosen occupations requiring the application of intellect, but I’m happy with the scientific revelations. Apparently my inner little kid is well, and not just when I pout after losing trout or salmon.

In three days I will be 28, the waning years of the roaring 20s. I was supposed to be married by now, and if I wasn’t, Natalie Lawrenson and I were supposed to exchange jewelry. But regardless of the never-fail net-test, and despite Natalie being married with kids, I know there isn’t anything to worry about; no need to freak out with the oh-no-I’m-almost-30 crisis. That madness can lead to worried spastic behavior over an uncontrollable inevitability and frequently culminates in 14,000 foot jumps, piercings, tattoos or reliving the bar scene at 30-something trying to jump start excitement. It provides a couple minutes of blissful youth before the inevitable regression back to the paranoid motorist speeding through life, desperately pumping the brakes, but with a cool new tat.

Skydiving four years ago didn’t stop my body from needing an extra day to recover from most exercise, or my right ankle from sounding like an ice cube tray after being flooded then frozen, but we’ll see in two, twelve, and twenty-two years if I’m that guy trying to hold on to what left me. Hopefully not. Aging with grace is the secret as John Gierach wrote getting old is half biology, half attitude.

I’m 8, so I guess that proves I’m doing fine, and that once again, if it’s on the internet, it must be true.

To contact Jeff Lund, e-mail