Well, I made it through another birthday and circle around the sun. Thanks for not noticing – truly – as I don’t like the attention of it and I go to some detail in advance to not make it visible. I don’t have it listed in profiles like on Facebook. I am a complete birthday non-sentimentalist!
But, when you have children, one needs to be making something of a fuss over them. Yet think about this – with five children … if we made a big deal out of each kid’s birthday for the 18 years of growing up, that would be 90 days, or three months of birthdays to celebrate. That is a lot of cake and candles (905 total candles, for example).
A thing I especially don’t like about birthdays is the reminder of getting old. I do not like getting old, and can’t believe a young man like me is stuck in a body like this!
But here are some recent reminders that things are getting worse:
1. At a fast food drive-in, I remotely placed my order and was told it was $6.03 … so I had a five, a one and three pennies ready at the window. The lady opens the window and says, “That will be $5.43.” So I replied, “Back there you said $6.03 … have you got the right person?” And she answered, “Well that was before the senior discount – you do qualify, right? I think?” I said, “Well, I’m 56 for a few more days, so you do what the Lord leads!” And she said the Lord led her to give it to me for $5.43. OK, maybe getting older has an advantage or two.
2. On my birthday itself, I was walking across my back yard and under a tree. I guess I was not looking enough at where I was going, and like the old dude that I am in my dotage, was apparently looking at my feet too much as I shuffled along. Suddenly, the end of a tree branch poked me 100% head-on just under my eye! I am not exaggerating at all when I say that if I was about ½ inch shorter, it would have taken my eye out! So – giant scratch / bleeding / swelling, etc. … and, I had to leave within minutes to go to a political luncheon. So there I am in a restaurant sitting next to Senator Shank, wiping the blood off my face with a napkin – hoping it would stop!
3. I spend a lot of time doing what I’m doing now – sitting at a keyboard writing. Essentially, I am in the business of word crafting and communicating. I am very thankful for modern tools, and often marvel that I went through so many years of advanced education with an electric typewriter as my primary techno-gadget. But now, every day, multiple times per day, I go to do something either in a document file search or a web search, and in the midst of it forget completely what it is that I’m looking for among the sea of open documents and pages! Ok, ok… maybe that is A.D.D. more than it is aging.
4. I have noticed that my taste in the cars I look at (but never actually buy – so far) has changed. It used to be that I looked at sports type cars, particularly Mustangs. Not anymore. Now I look at BMW 3-series and Benz 230s or something of the sort. I have not yet, and cannot imagine, looking for the stereo-typical large sedan so commonly associated with the elderly… but who knows what will be the next morph! If you see me drive up in a big boat vehicle, you’ll know I’m pretty near the end!
Well, it does stink to get older. I might have posted this in one of the blogs from my last life, but here are the lyrics to a song – to be sung by an older gentleman recently married … to the tune of “Side by Side” …
Well, I got married last Friday
My new wife stood beside me
When the guests had gone home
We stood alone
Side by Side
We were glad we were wed then
We got ready for bed then
Her teeth and her hair
She laid on a chair
Side by Side
One tin leg to follow,
one glass eye so small
She unscrewed her left arm
And put it on the chair by the wall
I stood there broken hearted
Most of my wife has departed
So I slept by the chair
There was more of her there
Side by Side