No, I don’t mean skulking around a college campus looking to date women with daddy issues half my age, or working the comb over as my last eight remaining strands of hair flap around in the cool breeze while driving my newly-purchased Corvette that I can’t afford with the top down.
A mid-life crisis can come in many different ways.
Apparently mine has come in the variety of novelty T-shirts I wear. As anyone knows me to any degree, I absolutely love the things and to tell you the truth, I only really started wearing them with any frequency hovering around my early to mid-30s.
One has a bird on it wearing taped-up huge glasses with the word “Nird” on it. Another has the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man and Godzilla happily dating, holding hands with a string of destruction behind them in their path as they take their stroll.
Still another example is a T-shirt showing classic horror movie figure Jason Voorhees with a sad face as he looks at the calendar to see the date of Friday the 14th.
Yes, nothing but the most highbrow humour for this guy.
Yes, this probably should be the clothing choice of someone still in their teens or 20s, but I love how the shirts brought a smile to my face and a chuckle when I saw them on the shelves before I bought them.
And apparently it’s brought a lot of smiles and chuckles around the world as well.
Grandmas in Phoenix asking me where they can get my shirt for their kids or grandkids, restaurant staff in Pennsylvania mulling over my ‘Little Spoon’ T-shirt for its meaning then laughing, a Dutchman in the Netherlands digging my Mexican Stand Off T-shirt between Rock, Paper and Scissors.
Covering a motivational speaker in Vauxhall last week numerous smiles could be seen from students looking at my Nird T-shirt.
I also think I started a trend where I’ve seen my brother-in-laws wearing like-minded T-shirts with more frequency. It made me think maybe we are all a kid at heart and what’s wrong with that?
I think sometimes my strange sense of humour is sometimes a byproduct of the job.
The journalism gig can involve long hours and writing the kinds of stories sometimes where you won’t exactly be included on the Christmas Card List of some you show in a negative light.
Then there is the constant bombardment we have as media sometimes where if it bleeds, it leads. The recent use of chemical warfare on children in Syria certainly has not given me the Care Bear warm fuzzies in my faith in the human race. Sometimes you just need to know you still have the ability to laugh and smile about things to keep your overall sanity functioning.
I’ve often wondered if the T-shirts I wear are proper attire in the workplace but then I remember, it’s not exactly The New York Times I work for. I have found in my years here it is better to be closer to the common man if you want to have people feel comfortable around you and approach you for stories which is critical in a weekly newspaper format.
I also figure if people think me wearing a T-shirt with a funny saying impairs my ability to wrap my head around the town’s budget, write a hard news story or interact with the public, it’s a pretty superficial attitude to have overall judging people by outwards appearance.
I’ve known guys wearing the shabbiest of clothes without two nickels to rub together that I would trust with my life while others in three-piece suits I wouldn’t let take out my garbage, which of course the reverse true in both incidences as well.
A man’s clothes should not represent his ability to do something, but rather be a window into what his personality is like.
I guess you could describe my personality as…well…strange, which the T-shirts signify.
Hopefully, that type of strange can be seen attributed by the public in the lovable Big Bang Theory sort of way and not the ‘that shouldn’t be in your freezer’ sort of way…I’ll let the public decide.
That being said, I’m not going to wear a T-shirt to a funeral or a sports banquet or a swanky gathering of dignitaries either. A time and a place for everything.
I guess I’m at a time now where I can still find the little things funny. And that’s something none of us should grow out of.
As my personality shows through my T-shirts, I’m simply goofy, which at times has been a good thing and others bad.
If you can’t laugh at yourself, you shouldn’t be able to laugh at anyone else either.
We are all searching in life to surround ourselves with the things and the people that fit us to a T…or a T-shirt.