Life is tough

Long lunch at Law School expense, thanking Law Librarians for their efforts in running e-tutorials under stress. Good food, fine wine, gazing out across the bay from the terrace of the restaurant at Darwin Museum, listening to Yothu Yindi playing their entire repertoire in rehearsal for this evening’s Telstra Aboriginal Art Awards. It’s a tough job but someone has to do it.

Today is Suzy Kruhse’s 50th birthday, mine is next month. Both watersnakes. Strange feeling. We still think of ourselves as in our 30s, full of promise with our lives ahead of us, when really much more than half is behind us. I wonder if you still feel that way at 70?

About Ken Parish

Ken Parish is a legal academic, with research areas in public law (constitutional and administrative law), civil procedure and teaching & learning theory and practice. He has been a legal academic for almost 20 years. Before that he ran a legal practice in Darwin for 15 years and was a Member of the NT Legislative Assembly for almost 4 years in the early 1990s.
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Gummo Trotsky
2022 years ago

Ken,

I don’t know about you, but when I was in my thirties, I generally thought of myself as in my early 20s, full of promise with my life ahead of me, when really much more than a third was behind me. I guess by the time I’m 70, mentally I’ll have reached my mid-forties.

James Russell
2022 years ago

I probably had the my-whole-life-ahead-of-me feeling when I was in my early 20s. Now in my late 20s I get it less often.

mark
2022 years ago

I’ve already lost that feeling. Good thing, too, because the thought of having a life of promise and mystery ahead of me always made me go weak at the knees with fear…

So Yothu Yindi’s performed songs other than “Treaty” now, have they? ;-)

Ken Parish
Ken Parish
2022 years ago

Actually Yothu Yindi have quite a large repertoire, it’s just that all their songs sound pretty much the same (to my ear anyway). But it still beats recorded muzak to have lunch by.

Ken Parish
Ken Parish
2022 years ago

James and Mark,

On the main point, you’re right that I was leaving out 50% of the emotion of being 50 (for me). Half of it IS an almost unthinking assumption that both I and life are still the same as at age 35, although that’s impossible to sustain on the rugby field. But the other half is a resigned, in some ways even grateful acceptance that my path is mostly set, that I’ve journeyed quite a long way down it and there’s no going back, and that there are lots of roads about which I once dreamed (even quite recently) that I’m never going to travel. It’s a cross between Frank Sinatra singing My Way and Peggy Lee’s Is That All There Is?

Strangely, I only ever have these wistful midlife crises when life is looking mostly pretty good and the pressure’s off a bit (as it is right now for me, having initially bedded in the external degree program). Mostly I’m too bloody busy to worry about such things.

Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
2022 years ago

Look. The road is long with many a winding turn that leads to ….well….who knows where? Who knows when? But stuff that, you’ve got nothing to worry about Ken. you’re a BOOMER! You won’t be 50 till you’re about 70 and you won’t have to take responsibility for anything till you’re round 95 – then it will be your parents’ fault anyway…with any luck. Salut!!

Scott Wickstein
2022 years ago

I feel like I’ve got one foot in the grave already. After all I’m an ancient 32…