#MikeAt40: What I’ve learned halfway through the game

Trying to sum up the first 40 years of a lifetime is like a first-time skydiver describing the experience as “breezy.” There are just far too many memories and experiences to share. The following list would never end.

Therefore, I’ve thrown down some random thoughts; observations, nuggets of wisdom, reckless opinions. Many of these you may or may not agree with, which is kind of the point. If you haven’t done this, try it. Kind of funny what you can come up with, what ideas pop into your head, and which of those ideas will never see the light of day. I’ll never cover the amount of ground I’d like. There are takeaways I could tell you from my first day of kindergarden in 198- . Yeah, never mind.

I was born 32 hours, 46 minutes before the last American, a Marine, stepped onto a chopper from the roof of the U.S. embassy in Saigon, ending the Vietnam War. I think that’s pretty cool.

It’s a common saying now, but it couldn’t be more true: it’s not what happens to you, it’s how you react to it. Michael6

Growing up, we all followed a consistent daily routine — school, extracurricular activities (sports), homework, dinner and TV, bed — I look back and admire the routine, comfort, efficiency, the dependable nature of it. When I’m a parent, that routine will return, and I welcome it.

If you have an active aversion to change, life has a way of fixing that right up for you. Rather than avoid it, find it within yourself to embrace it. Makes life a lot easier (and a lot more fun!).

After all these years living in a big city
, it still amazes me the kindness that exists in people, just as it still surprises me how ugly, selfish, and self-serving we can be.

The trick is keeping the faith there are more good people than bad, surrounding yourself with them, and never allowing the bad near your light.

Cynicism and pessimism rarely solve anything. I hear way too much of it these days, especially online from people who either want to outsmart the room, starving for acknowledgement, or both. You don’t sound intelligent. You sound like an asshole.

I am not exempt from this scenario. Clearly.

My greatest strength is my persistence. #BluntInstrument

My greatest weakness is not knowing when to quit.

Louis CK givin’ the ol’ No. 1 to hair loss.

When I realized I was losing my hair, it wasn’t some dramatic sense of doom and gloom. You just realize, hey, there is literally nothing you can do. It was more like, “So, this is how it’s going to be. Wow, okay then.”
You just gotta make it look good which, of course, I do.

Now…would I take my glorious head of hair back in a second? Hell. Yes.

Growing up, I thought Generation X would be the difference. Turns out Gen X is no different from the Baby Boomers, the Greatest Generation, or any other era. It’s not my intent to be negative, necessarily. I’ve simply re-evaluated my personal beliefs to reflect the fact that at this point in our evolution, the human condition is simply incapable of learning from its mistakes.

I still believe, though, and we should never stop trying, never stop improving. It’s always up to us.

Know your worth, and those who aren’t worth it.
Some people are in your rear-view mirror for a reason.

Some people are in your rear-view for a reason.

Eating whatever I wanted at even, say, 36, had NONE of the consequences of eating whatever I want at 40. The days of an endless “churn and burn” metabolism are over. Boy, I had a helluva run, though.

Some lessons must be learned again.

My sense of humor is always changing. I always admired my buddies who could pull out one-liners or laughers whenever they wanted. My funnies depend on multiple factors, mostly good. Around some, I whip ’em out and kill the room. With other people or groups it’s much more subtle, more like a dry wit. Sometimes I’m as humorless as a rock. Sorry, just don’t have it. More often than not, it depends on the company.

So very true: If you don’t respect yourself, no one else will.

At my core, I’m a farm boy living in the big city. It’s funny how so many of my friends in Seattle can’t imagine me on a farm.

I’ve ignored that “gut feeling” far too many times in my life.

The Seahawks have taught me more than a few lessons to live by. Here are just a few:1witx_zpsef805b38

1) Appreciate the little victories. Moral victories can, in fact, be valuable.
2) There will come a time, though, when they’re not enough. These are called “the good days”.
3) Unceasing, unbreakable, unshakeable loyalty
4) Accepting there are things you have no control over.
Then again, when you have an opportunity, JUMP ON IT.
5) It’s not over ’til it’s over; put the final nail in the coffin; step on their throats; finish the job.
6) I’m more Curt Warner than Richard Sherman. At times, I wish I was the reverse.
7) Life isn’t fair — Fredd Young reversed INT call in ’87 Wild Card; Testaverde in ’98; getting screwed in XL
8) Petty or not, East Coast bias is real.
9) Discovering your heroes, then learning and accepting said heroes are, in fact, fallible
10) There is always someone better. (until you win it all; SB XLVIII)

The very best way to be “cool” is doing your own thing. Do what you love, what you’re passionate about. Do what YOU like to do. The advantages, in whatever form, will come sooner or later.

I’ve avoided math like the yellow fever since Math 100 in college. I can’t believe I just told the world about that Math 100 class. I killed it, though. So there’s that.

Find a way not to brood and simmer over your mistakes or opportunities you missed. It does nothing for you. You are where you are. Adjust to the situation and make it better.

I still marvel at the world. I love that about myself. The inherent, natural ability a spider has in their DNA to spin a web with absolute precision still astounds me. I can barely cut my toenails correctly.

Guilt is one of the most destructive feelings to shake. It manifests and expresses itself in so many ways, and I can’t think of any that are actually healthy.

I still want to travel. When I got back from Europe in ’94, my life was irrevocably altered. Easily one of the biggest and best experiences and lessons I’ve ever had. How would you NOT want to travel as much as you can?? There’s SO MUCH to see, experience, learn, and appreciate out there.
One of my favorite quotes: “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.” — Mark Twain

Wow, if i could meet anyone? That’s a long line. But seriously, who wouldn’t want to meet Jesus?? Just think of all the brass-tacks questions you could ask! From the source Himself. HELL YEAH!!!

After that? Probably Einstein.

I’m going to be a pretty good dad. Unless I just jinxed myself. Hey, it happens.


I am nothing without my family. The depth of my love for them isn’t even quantifiable.

I remember my family drinking coffee at my grandmother’s on the farm and trying it. I LIKED IT. If you know me at all, this makes perfect sense.

Looking back, I wish I’d have kept up with the piano. I’ve always tumblr_m8pwwwUR8A1qfr6udo6_400said I was right at that point, that event horizon, where had I continued I might have gotten really good. My family might have a different take. I was so sick and tired of practicing, though. Practicing for 30 minutes was like torture. Just a half-hour!! That in itself should have told me something. I think it’s important to be able to play an instrument, though. Hey, the chicks dig it.

When the buddies put out word we are to assemble for drinks:


Nothing will ever replace the late summer afternoon view on the farm. 



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