Thursday, June 10, 2010

Weakness of the notsoyoungman

I have it in my mind that deploying to a war zone is easier for a young man that an old man, or at least, a not so young man, as it is.  The duties of a husband and father are springs not yet sprung in the mind of a young man; nor are the concerns with the daily life, health, virtue and development of those children and wife.  The body of a young man abounds without the arthritides he later gains.  Rising after quick restful sleep, the young man needs no respite, stands for the physical challenges, and consumes, digests and evacuates in near involuntary routine.  The not so young man must strategize water consumption to avoid otherwise nighttime prostatic spasms and subsequent trips to the loo, and deviates from his set cuisine at his own peril given the unpredictable effects on his bowels.  That he thinks of bowels makes him different that the young man.

The young man is likely less aware of the ways of the world, and more accustomed to following directions without fully comprehending the import or the consequences.  To the young man, time is infinite, and spending it directionless without purpose is of little regret or concern.  The not so young man is less generous with his most valuable depleting resource.  The not so young man knows the absurdity, inequity, and unkind face of war.  The young man speaks in platitudes, and has a clear dictum on the purpose of his service.
The young man lacks wisdom and insight to put inconveniences and suffering in perspective.  He lacks the capacity to compartmentalize properly the intellect and the emotion.  He can become weary with personal investment in things outside of his control.  But still, a young man can be more content to waste his time, is less aware that he is wasting it, and is more steadfast in the clarity of his work.

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