I am filing early this week because of a family wedding on Saturday up in Wine Country.
I turned 57 on Sept. 17th, and I don't care who knows it. I had several wonderful celebrations, including dinner with my wife at Le Bistro, my favorite French restaurant in Walnut Creek, where I had the menage a trois (steak with three kinds of sauce). I got several books and bunch of funny cards (including a really funny/weird one from my college friend B), and on Sunday celebrated with my daughters by attending the American Conservatory Theater production of Noel Coward's Brief Encounter (excellent), followed by dinner in the Haight near my daughter's apartment at Eos (also excellent).
I think of my mortality a lot, which is why I appreciated this from Richard Dalton. He had an interesting story about its provenance, but I think I'll just run the key part of his email:
"To live well, to laugh often, to love much, to gain the respect of intelligent people, to win the love of little children. To fill one's niche and accomplish one's task, to leave the world better than one finds it whether by an improved flower, a perfect poem or another life ennobled. to never lack appreciation of earth's beauty or fail to express it, to always look for the best in others, to give the best one has. To make one's life an inspiration and one's memory a benediction. This is success." --Bessie Stanley 1905
If you have some time, google this passage. Its story is fascinating.
By this standard, I've been a success. I don't want to die tomorrow, but if I do, I've lived a worthwhile life, and I have no regrets.