I'm feeling kind of old lately. And it has nothing to do with the grey/white/silver bits in my hair either. It also has no connection to the AARP crap that comes in the mail faithfully every month - and has since the year I turned 50. I still haven't joined. Wow those folks are persistent. It gets tossed just like the invitations to discuss cremation, wills and 'final expenses' as they so coyly phrase it.
Nope. My aged feeling is my own dang fault. It was something I wrote so basically I did this to myself. I was writing an email to a friend of mine. Almost daily she and I knock out a quick email to one another, just the blah-de-blah of what's happening in our lives. Exciting things like what we are making for dinner that day, the local weather and something interesting we might have seen on a recent walk. Nothing earth shattering. I was regaling her with the story of our recent and belated Christmas celebration and I found myself writing the following sentence, "We had such a great time that even though we got home late, it was totally worth it." I paused and re-read the sentence. Something was wrong with it but I couldn't figure out what it was. And then I saw it and started laughing. I mean really laughing. Loud and long.
The "late night" I referred to was around 9 pm. Nine. Twenty-one hundred in military time. That is hilarious. And a little sad. There was a time when I wouldn't leave to start my fun evening until 9 pm. And now to me that is unusually late. Sigh.
And that got me thinking about other old people stuff that I say or do now. It was an easy list to come up with. I didn't have to think too hard. Which is a comment all on it's own. So here is a short list of sure fire indicators of my fogey-ness:
1. While I do not dislike current music, I cannot understand most of the lyrics. Which means I can hum along and tap my toes, but I cannot sing along. I remind me of my own mother who, while she never once objected to the music we played, almost never ever got the words right, but sang along, incorrectly, with her beautiful voice.
2. I also do not understand current colloquialisms. A million or so years ago when I was young, I saw Peter Sellers do a "bit" that I thought was a laugh riot. He, a middle aged, very buttoned up Brit in three-piece suit, umbrella and bowler was having a conversation (or trying to) with a much younger man. While both of them were speaking English, neither of them was speaking the same language. You will have to trust me on this, to a young person of that era, the bit was hysterical! "Out of my line of vision" indeed.
3. I find, to my great embarrassment, that occasionally I tell the same story or recount the same anecdote, more than once. Oh gosh that is so humiliating. I hate when I do that. Most folks are kind about it, but I can tell by the look on their faces that they've heard this before and usually that makes me stop and say something like, "...but I'm sure you've heard this before". Red Faced!
4. I've lived so long now that things that happened in my life time are now historic references. Little children are studying in school things that I lived through. Holy cats. And worse, they often get it wrong.
5. Younger people do not understand my music, literary, television or movie references. That one hits hard. The earlier Peter Sellers reference for example. That would have been met by a blank stare. Them: "Peter who?" Me: "No not The Who". Them: "What?" Me: "This is starting to sound like an Abbott and Costello routine" Them: "Who?"
6. Parts of my body hurt. All of the time. My hands hurt, my neck hurts, my shoulder hurts, my knees hurt. Different degrees of discomfort, admittedly, but all of the time. Which means that when I say, "I'm running to the store", I actually mean I'm walking to the store. And frankly, if I say that I'm running anywhere, I am flat out lying to you. Well maybe if hungry tigers were chasing me I might try to break into a trot, but more likely, I would turn and slap the crap out of it for forcing me to try to run.
7. Because of the above I often smell like Icy/Hot. I used to a wear perfume called, "Casual". I went to great lengths to try to find this perfect fragrance. I wore it every day. It became my signature scent and I loved it. Now I smell mostly of a combination of shampoo and Icy/Hot. Super Sexy.
8. I have, sadly, become accustomed to being teased for my not so very Techie ways. Yes I still write my grocery list on paper. Yes I am quite aware that I can do that on my phone but no I choose not to. In a few weeks I will have my very first On-Line doctor appointment. I was assured by the lady on the other end of the phone when I made the appointment that they would talk me through the process and that I would have no problem figuring out how to do it. I responded that I hoped it was so and that I would hate to be their very first patient who was unable to figure it out. I actually love the idea of not having to go to the actual doctor's office for a doctor visit but it feels very Star Trek to me. Not quite real y'know?
In spite of my low-tech ways, I take heart in knowing that while I can operate a computer I also can function without one. And knowing that I am the last generation to be able to both read and write cursive, read both an analogue and digital clock, use a computer and a manual typewriter and know how to use a cell phone AND an old rotary dial phone gives me a little feeling of power there. I am like a human Rosetta Stone. I stand with one foot in each era. From this point forward, my generation is all ancient history.
Like I said, I'm feeling old today.
Yup, this is me. Some people said, "Sam, you should write a Blog". "Well, there's a thought", I thought to myself. And so here it is.