Despite my youthful appearance and demeanor, I do sometimes worry about the sands of time creeping into my life and suddenly I’m an old man. The uncomfortable grit of time is a sneaky bugger. Like a day at the beach, you’re having a great time until you’re walking back to the car and notice a sand-wedgie forming in your shorts.
Sure, when I see pictures of myself I sometimes think ‘who’s that old geezer wearing the same clothes as me?’. I usually chalk that up to bad lighting and bad photography.
…and I’ve been offered the ‘seniors discount’ more than once. Ouch!
The outward signs are there, despite my denial and generally immature behavior. Aches and pains, white hair, taking a handful of pills each morning and night. The usual stuff.
But I’ve started to notice less obvious things lately.
I find myself walking around with my hands behind my back a lot more. Only old folks do this.
Maybe that’s because during the Great Depression they were told to ‘look but don’t touch’. Maybe it’s about creating balance since old guys get a bit of a paunch and need to offset the forward weight. I don’t know, since I’m new at this.
Something else old folks do that you don’t hear any more is whistling. Old guys whistle a lot, but no one else does. Maybe t’s a lost art, like cursive writing or dialing a phone. I heard a guy whistling all through the store the other day. It seemed odd….and a bit annoying. He was doing bird calls. He was very good at it, but he wouldn’t shut up. ‘Whistle, whistle, whistle’…non stop! I wanted to choke him after the 10th bird call.
Apparently, having no patience for things is another sign of old age.
I guess the most disturbing trend are these things we call ‘seniors moment’; when we forget what we were doing or go looking for our glasses while we’re wearing them…or forgetting your wife’s name when introducing her to your old class-mates (true story).
Even calling it ‘seniors moment’ shows that I’m aging. I used to call it a ‘brain fart’.
Now, we all get them from time to time, right? You do, I do, everyone does. Start driving and get on the on-ramp to go to work when you were heading to the grocery store, or walk into a room and forget why. Very common and very natural. That’s just being distracted.
The problem is figuring out when it’s just a brain fart/seniors moment, or when it’s old age. I figure the frequency of it has to be factored in, right? If you forget where you put your keys occasionally, that’s just normal. If you have to wear them around your neck, you might have a problem.
The severity of the forgetfulness is probably part of the equation too – If you forgot where you put your glasses, that’s normal. If you forgot that you wear glasses…well, you might have to sell those aluminum pots.
I’m trying to keep all of this in perspective. I haven’t forgotten where I live or that I was supposed to be wearing pants today, so that’s good. I just wish these ‘senior moment’s’ were a bit less frequent, you know?
Meanwhile, I think I’ll stroll down to the Blockbuster and rent a Matlock video while I whistle with my hands behind my back. And if I see a little kid along the way, I might do the ‘I’ve got your nose’ trick with my thumb. Kids love that!