Sunday, August 13, 2006

For The Love Of Comfort, One For The Ages, Happy Birthday You Harlot

Posted by PicasaThis is what I want to look like when I am old. I want to look half young, and half dead. A happy medium who knows the future and the past. An extra large sweat suit unsullied by sweat... A glance at the cat to give me an air of JC Penny catalogue mystery... Clean socks without holes in them... Just one chin...

This was two Christmas' ago. That means I was as old as I want to look at 41. I was done then. Like a fine wine, I wanted to be corked well and stored on my side. I wanted my life's scars to be preserved like the time capsules that they are. I don't want any new ones. Especially ones from surgery.

My Mum tells me getting old is easy. You don't have to do anything.

I said, "like growing a beard"?

She said "yes, like growing a beard."

She says getting old is easy, but TOLERATING IT is something else completely. She says it takes a lot of courage to get old. And you have to be humble.

I think I understand what she is talking about. Arrogance does not a subsitute make for youth, when it comes to things like one-armed push ups.

I still remember the first time some strange kid called me "that man" and I looked behind me to see who the kid was talking about. Where was "that man?" Who was "that man?" At what point in time did I cross the threshold from "that kid" to "that man?"

When will "that old man" be used against me?

I read today of a twenty five year old female blogger having a birthday. She was lamenting her ripe old age and complaining about her lack of progress in life.

Progress? Are you shitting me? As Mum declares, you will progress whether you like it or not. My advice to those who count their age as a milestone marker-- knock it off. Better to count the stories in your pockets. Better to count the silly events that make up all of our lives. Better to share in the joy of the unfolding, then to lament the inevitability of it.

Check out this picture.

This is my Mum at 72, barely able to walk. But damn it, she is not done with stories. She is not done with life. She is stuck at half young and half dead, and has a new story to tell.

"Did I ever tell you about the time I ran my walker on the beach?"

Yes Mum. But tell me again.


ammogirl said...


Dogbait said...

My 91 year old father strides into my hospital room and asks, "What's up with you". Me getting old? Nah.

Nikky said...

Nice commentary today Scott (and nice mention/reference of Harlot!)

I couldn't agree more!

Anonymous said...

nice post..words of wisdom eh?
i agree

carol said...

you're 2 years older than me!yesss!yesss! ('umble, I'm very 'umble)

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