Staying Awkward

I remember many ages being a bit awkward and the current one isn’t any better. It might have something to do with acting my age. I’m pretty sure my maturity peaked in grade nine. I’m almost positive I’d do better a second time around if afforded the opportunity … but then again maybe not.

If you guessed I had a birthday, you are right. Thankfully it’s too late to wish me happy birthday since looking for well wishes or sympathy is not my style. However, my birthday reminded me that I have not complained about my age recently. Being older and theoretically wiser, there are some things I know I can’t change but this one I can easily rectify.

“The older I grow the more I distrust the familiar doctrine that age brings wisdom.”
~H.L. Mencken

I could have, and probably should have, just let another awkward birthday slip by. I prepared myself so the day itself was good but the lingering effect feels like concrete hardening – or is that my arteries? It’s hard to argue that I’m still middle aged when doubling gets me a spry 110. In photography terms, this might be the shadow of the golden hour.


How was I supposed to hold my ears again?

One of the awkward parts of my increasing age is reaffirming how few new things there are under the sun. A forced tour of men’s clothing shops recently got me in contact with young sales people enthusiastically promoting the latest fashions. It was hard to share their passion. After a couple of stores I realized the problem. I had already worn, and worn out, all the latest styles in another decade. Strange.

There may be more awkwardness in the future. I’ve heard some restaurants sneak my age into the seniors’ menu. That’s all good but I’m guessing there might be meager portions. My eating capacity is less than my teenage version who could sock away 800 calories on my coffee break and still be starving at lunch. But my appetite is still enough to be a raging beast at times. Is it appropriate to order two plates just in case? I doubt it!

Older people look at me and think I’m not old. Did you know that an older person is someone who is 15 years older than you? Inevitably I am that person to more people every year! I certainly don’t want to be 15 years older than I am today. Then again I’m not so sure about reliving the last 15 years. Maybe this isn’t a time to be complaining about after all. Still it all feels a bit awkward …


Sometimes a little awkward is still comfortable.

Latest Comments

  1. Dalo 2013 says:

    The fawn shot is like looking in the mirror every morning when I wake up ~ great shot. And I am with you, “sometimes a little awkward is still comfortable” and I don’t intend to lose it. Cheers to a great summer Lyle ~


    • Lyle Krahn says:

      I hadn’t thot of the morning when looking at the fawn shot but that makes perfect sense. You have a great summer as well.


      • Dalo 2013 says:

        That would be such a perfect print to have up in the bathroom next to the mirror so I could remind myself to take a look at myself prior to going out (don’t know why it is, but heading out with some pretty bad bed-head is common for me)… Cheers, and hope you are having a big 4th of July celebration 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. kirizar says:

    I love the ‘awkward’ photos that accompany the story. I cannot agree more that age doesn’t seem to be improving me. I should have been born a cheese…or maybe a bottle of wine…instead.


  3. Jeff | Planet Bell says:

    Happy Birthday, belated. “It’s hard to argue that I’m still middle aged when doubling gets me a spry 110. In photography terms, this might be the shadow of the golden hour.” ~ hysterical. Thanks for making me laugh.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Scott Marshall says:

    the lead shot is just spectacular – perfectly frozen


  5. whichwaynow101 says:

    I won’t tell you how old is 15 years older than me but it’s positively ancient! Shocking! Please stick with animal pix.


  6. Mandy says:

    Another morning giggle – thank you. (A giggle at the photos, not your age!)


  7. Sue says:

    Grade 9 maturity level? I’m impressed. 😉


  8. Mike Powell says:

    Awkward? All I can say, Lyle, is that I am glad that I don’t have you following me around with a camera, particularly when I am taking photos, because you would have a treasure trove of images of me in the most contorted positions imaginable. Fortunately I am not as photogenic was your furry friends, so there will be no featured photos. Old? I’ll know that you are old when you decide your 500mm lens is too much to tote and you switch to a point-and-shoot camera. I’m in favor of a new movement–embrace the awkward. Maybe we could have t-shirts with a slogan like, “I help put the awk in awkward.” Photographers tend to be a geeky group–this movement might catch on.


    • Lyle Krahn says:

      I’d buy the t-shirt so that probably says something about me too. It also says something that I would enjoy following somebody around just to take awkward photos much more than grip and grin portraits. I don’t think my state of mind is old yet and you won’t pry my big lens out of my hands quite yet!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Suze says:

    (I know you don’t want to hear it, but…) Happy belated Birthday, Lyle. 🙂 I don’t consider men in their mid 50s old. Recently I found old pictures of my grandparents from the late 80s. My grandfather who was in his early 50s by then looks absolutely lovely in those pictures. After all men age like wine… Don’t forget.
    Thanks for sharing the wonderful shots as well!


    • Lyle Krahn says:

      Thanks for the belated birthday wish – I had a hunch I’d get a few. I like your perspective on aging and will take heart. I’m still pinching myself about the idea of me being a grandfather. Glad you enjoyed the photos.


  10. David says:

    Great photos highlighting your theme which was an enjoyable read.


  11. Garden Walk Garden Talk says:

    15 years is someone older? I never thought of it that way. I just figure there will always be someone 15 years older than me. Not good genes on that one. Good post, you are always entertaining.


    • Lyle Krahn says:

      Glad to hear about the entertaining part. Good genes? Bad genes? I guess we never know until our time is up. But chances are there is always someone older than us – there are some very old people around.


  12. Steve Gingold says:

    Like others here, I’ve got you by more than a few years. But I had some folks offering me a senior discount when I was younger than you. Foolishly I would correct them which cost me also more than a few dollars. Pride has some real costs. 🙂


  13. Gunta says:

    Frankly I think you’re just a young whippersnapper myself! Don’t want to tell you the number if I doubled the midpoint, but quite a bit more than yours. 😉


  14. Vicki says:

    I guess the only real sign of ‘old’ age is when you’re closer to death, than your birth (in years)……..which I am.


  15. Girl Gone Expat says:

    I also don’t want to be 15 years older than I am today, but on the other hand the option of not getting there isn’t any better! 😉 Enjoyed your writing and photos as always!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Patrizia M. says:

    Sì è vecchi solo quando ci si sente tali, l’età non conta, è quello che è dentro di noi che ci deve far sentire giovani.
    Molto belle le foto!!
    Saluti, Patrizia


  17. Lavinia Ross says:

    I can still wish you a happy birthday! To not do so would increase my own awkwardness factor beyond current specifications. And I am older than you…. 🙂

    Great shots of those wild characters letting their fur down! Now I challenge you to catch a Coot in an true awkward moment. The problem with Coots is that they always look like they are having an awkward moment. Wasn’t it those guys who started the whole one-legged thing? 🙂


    • Lyle Krahn says:

      Thanks for the birthday wish – I would hate to be inadvertent cause of any awkwardness (intentional is a whole different story).

      Those coots really crack me up and that was before I noticed those ridiculously big feet. I still have some baby coot pics that I need to post someday …

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Frank Roy says:

    Lyle: You have a genuine gift for writing and you’re pretty good with camera too. Some day (before it gets much later in my long life) I’d like to meet you. I enjoy your little “essays.” I hope you enjoy writing them. Have you ever thought of putting some of them together in a book? We in the Natural History Society don’t know you. If you’re intereted in getting out with others we have a lot of field trips, especially on Saturdays. We have several excellent photographers in the group, especially Nick Saunders and May Haga. May has been a great help to me in collecting and choosing photos for The Birds of Saskatchewan, a 2-volume set of books we hope to publish perhaps early next year. We’ve been working on them since 2009. It is a major enterprise, much more work than we anticipated with 3 editors and a host of 80+ writers. SK has 437 species. We are not producng a field guide, but we are producing a history, a look at habitat, the change in numbers in the last 2 centuries, breeding and migration data, banders and banding records (over 2,00,000 banded birds), and species given special study in the province, etc. etc. Anyway, Lyle, other members of the Society may already know you. I do not, although I met your wife when a group of us did a tour of the south-east fire station a couple of years back. At that time, she was one of 5 women fire-fighters. I presume from your articles that you live just west of the city probably near the highway to Pike Lake. I live in Victoria Place, a fairly big and fairly old apt bldg at the south end of what used to be “the old iron bridge.” They’ve shut it down and taken out one of the spans so that we can’t even sneak a walk on it any more. I used to walk it every day. If you want to phone or write me, tel is 374-8571 email: address: 912-606 Victoria Ave. S7N 0Z1 Sincere best wishes, Frank Roy


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