Haha, I wish I was in 'mid life'! At my age I am well past that point. Yes, I am certainly spun off on a strange path right now. After almost 30 years of making bikes plusher I have snapped into riding single track on a f'ing gravel bike. I was in South Lake Tahoe last week with 2 bikes. I have an awesome 'long shock/fork' Flux based trail bike with heavy tires and wide rims and dropper post and angle changing headset and short stem since I bumped up to a large frame with offset shock bushings, so properly long, low and slack...and rode it once. WTF. Yes it had sealant in the tires and air in all the right places, but day in and day out I rode a 40mm tire'd gravel bike. When riding the fluxinator there was only about 23% of the time it felt like I was 'flying'. Down through the rocks and zooming thru the woods it worked incredibly well. Then on the next climb the big tires, plush suspension and weight made it feel like I was riding a Purple mattress. On the rigid bike, the feel uphill is snappy, the bike leaps with each pedal stroke, the speed uphill is so much faster (if not too rough) so the time in pain is actually shortened. Of course on the descents it can get a little scary, but isn't that what drew us to ride the dirt? Micro terrors. Well, let me tell you there are a ton more little terrors descending on a rigid bike, and the descents take longer so more minutes in the fun zone. Off to ride my fully rigid single speed.