aged vs. old

in life, there are some things that can’t be re-created.  i firmly believe that the best things in life are those that have age + a story.  that doesn’t mean everything “old” is “aged”.  old is standing the test of time.  an old shirt, an old picture, an old car.  while things old are impressive by their sheer perseverance to have survived as long as they have, they don’t cross the threshold to ‘aged’ without having lived, without having a story.

pause for a moment + think of something that is old. now without letting that thing go, think of how you experienced it. can you touch it? feel it? smell it?

at my desk at all times, is a baseball. for me it invokes memories of childhood, of playing a game. but even more, it brings a feeling. i feel the dirt, smell the grass, taste the sunflower seeds, hear the sound of the ball hitting leather. i also can feel the wooden bench + see a hand in the bucket pulling out another clay stained ball for a round of batting practice. a simple baseball can calm my mind + set me at ease. now the ball on my desk has not been with me since childhood, nor is it one that is brand new out of box. it was fished out of a bucket from one too many batting practices. a few smudges, few rough spots, multiple frayed seams. it’s not the ball itself in its ‘loved’ condition, it’s the places that ball + so many before it have been. it is about the feeling of that ball + all its stitching + dirt that rolls around in my hand.

what’s your baseball? is it an old car that you remember riding with a loved one in? how about a watch or some jewelry that’s been passed down? it could simply be a combination of coke + peanuts that are an aged coupling that invokes memories, tastes + sounds of the past.

something aged has gone through a process of growing old while gaining wisdom, building a story, living. aged makes mistakes, has some dings, some scars, some tales to tell. a tree that has stood tall thru storms, thru more birds nests than it can remember + even that tree house that got added three families ago. it has lived, it’s been loved + it’s seen time pass while leaving a little of itself, but taking nothing in return.

we can all hope to one day be aged, not just old. to have a story, to tell that story + to leave a piece of who we are in the memories we leave behind. what baseball will you leave for those who come next?