By Bill Storie
A few days ago were all scrambling to find a brand new calendar to hang on the kitchen wall. I was never quite sure why we always hang them in the kitchen. Maybe it means we have to tick off which days we can and can’t eat.
“Wednesday – Day off”
Anyway, the turn of another year must mean that this year at some point for all of us, we’ll be a year older. Inevitable I suppose, but something to think about. Maybe we should rename “Olderhood” to “Another Year Olderhood”.
This brings us back to that annoying word “old”.
Most of us accept that we’re older, but few of us can buy into this “old” nonsense. We actually like the word “older” because it suggests wisdom, maturity and tons of common sense. That may be true of course but my personal definitions of the word “older” are more along the lines of eccentric, ornery and “if not now, then when?”
And the next time some idiot tells me “You’re not getting older, you’re getting better” I will smack them. I’ve always been pretty good thank you very much – certainly in some things, not all things, but the important things. Having said that however, there are plenty people who really do need to get better, so perhaps in their case it will come with age because it doesn’t seem to be coming with listening.
“She looks good for her age” means what precisely? If she was twenty she’d be ugly?
“Past his prime” means he is way beyond his own level of intelligence?
“He’s too old to be doing that” means I should be helping him but I can’t be bothered, but he is certainly too old to be doing that. Huh?
“Wow, you look great for your age” means “Oh you’re still with us after all?”
And lest, but not last :
“Senile” is actually an addition to your Bucket List re a river in Egypt.
As we age – ok, get older if you prefer – we tend to take the use of words much more seriously. The use of language becomes a challenge, maybe even a burden. We can easily identify the feelings about something in our life and we know how we are being impacted by them, but sometimes we just can’t find the words to adequately describe those emotions. We rely on our experience to feel the emotions of course, but sometimes we struggle to express those feelings to others. Mind you, that could be a memory thing I suppose. “I used to know the words for Go Away, but I’ve forgotten them.” An age thing.
Lastly, just keep in mind, that at this age, had you been living in say the 15th century then by this age you’d have been on talk shows up and down the country due to being really, really olde.
This all started with the mention of placing a 12-page document on the wall. It’s funny how small things like that can trigger a wave of thinking, and in my bizarre mind, writing. The slightest little word or event can make a big change in what we want to do with the rest of lives. We hear the word “Old” and start to believe that age is our worst enemy.
It’s maybe not the kindest word in the English language I grant you, but it is a word which can only be defined by you, no-one else. If you don’t like it, don’t use it, and ignore people who refer to you as that “Old Fogey.” They will be old one day themselves.
If you feel old, so be it. If you think old, shame on you.
And if that thing on the kitchen wall really annoys you, throw it away and be like the rest of us old fogeys, who have no idea what day it is. We will eat though regardless.
Finally, Happy birthday to you.
I thought I’d be the first to congratulate you in 2016 for getting older !!!!!!
By Bill Storie