What Makes a Person OLDPosted by: Anita Hales | Posted on: December 1, 2015
Today is my birthday. I turned 65 years old.
So I’m pondering whether or not I’m really an old person, senior citizen, aged, over the hill, reaching the end, old gray mare….
Inside is still that person with a sense of humor and tendency towards misbehaving.
I remember my legs taking me up mountains and down paths. They still do only a little slower. I also have some hardware installed in the knees that the airport people just love.
The World Health Organization has set “old age” at 50 years. If that’s so, I’ve been a geezer for several years now. You may be in the geezer club and not even know it.
According to Wikipedia, most Britons consider old age starting at 59. If you’re under age 24, you probably consider 54 to be “old”. 80-year-olds consider 69 to be “old age”.
Signs of old age include physical deterioration. (This old gray mare ain’t what she used to be.) Also, mental issues. They tend to repeat themselves, repeat themselves.
One Egyptian scribe wrote: “O Sovereign my Lord! Oldness has come; old age has descended. Feebleness has arrived; dotage is here anew. The heart sleeps wearily every day.
The eyes are weak, the ears are deaf, the strength is disappearing because of weariness of the heart and the mouth is silent and cannot speak.
The heart is forgetful and cannot recall yesterday. The bone suffers old age. God is become evil. All taste is gone. What old age does to men is evil in every respect.”
Lovely. I never had taste anyway or so I’m told.
And then there’s this lovely diatribe from Shakespeare:
“The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slipper’d pantaloon,
With spectacles on nose and pouch on side,
His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is second childishness and mere oblivion,
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.”
Not quite there yet.
I’m hoping I’m at the age of wisdom where people are in awe of my experience and knowledge and climb mountains to seek my advice.
No, not the same thing as the old hags in folklore who cackle and ask for money to give you what they know.
But then I can always use some money.
Maybe I’ll find a nice warm cave somewhere to live so people can take pilgrimages to visit me and leave me jewels and gold coins for my wisdom. I could share a few words with politicians.
For now, I’ll just tear around in my little red Jeep and frighten the wits out of all the other people on the road. I’ll forget what I went to town for and spend money on something anyway so it isn’t a wasted trip. I’ll wear clothes that are out of style and don’t match at all with ugly sensible shoes.
I’ll take cruises and be an obnoxious tourist.
I’ll embarrass my grown children and my grandchildren with my antics.
I’ll laugh about everything and take nothing seriously and hopefully take some people down that road with me.
And all the while, people will give me a pass because I have gray hair and they’ll think I’m old.
This could be fun.