The Times They Have a Changed

Masarwa man - http://natavillage.orgIt’s Pizza Day, which is my favorite day of the week. It’s a (scheduled) day every week on which I am allowed to eat pizza. To rationalize, it’s always a reward for something. This week it’s a reward for eating Brussels sprouts and broccoli. Pizza Day is always on a day off, so that it can be fully exploited with an entire Pizza Day regimen. This week it’s on Thursday, which is my home-office day.

In the morning I go shopping for pizza and the other things I’ll need to repair my body the day after Pizza Day. Then I take a bath and read about Abraham Lincoln. I organize the fridge and freezer, and then groom the cat with her awesome new grooming brush (Good Girl Cat Brush 69Kc at Tesco). I finalize preparations by downloading a good movie to watch with the pizza (A Man Called Horse starring Richard Harris, 1970, 114 minutes, color).

In my 38th year on this planet, this is what passes for excitement.

Everyone knows that things change as you get older. But nothing prepares you for the moment you realize that you are a walking cliché. While I enjoy my bath on this Pizza Day I categorize the major changes I have undergone from twenty-one to thirty-seven.

  1. Choices. I’m not sure when it happened, but at some point I finally understood that suffering the consequences of my decisions was way more painful that just making better decisions. Thus, I became far more prudent in what I chose to do. I rarely say things like, “Hey, let’s climb that thing,” or “Bite this and see if it explodes” anymore. Instead, they have been replaced by sentences such as, “I know it’s Friday, but I feel like staying in and reading,” or “Is there garlic in that? Ooh, I better not; I’ll be up all night with heartburn.”
  2. Excitement. This has changed to such a degree that if my twenty-one and thirty-seven year old selves met for a drink, their only basis for recognition would be their over-developed brows and a stomach mole. At twenty-one, a weekend was not successful unless there was at least one threat of arrest, three slaps in the face and two counts of public nudity (often inciting the threat of arrest). Nowadays, a weekend is not successful unless I clean, read in bed and spend an evening writing in a quiet pub. Furthermore, the things which excite me have changed. The landmark cases of this are the first time I complimented a man’s sweater vest and the day I bragged about my favorite brand of kitty litter. More evidence of this phenomenon is in this essay: IE: Pizza Day, grooming brush and organization of the fridge.
  3. Your Body Hates You. I once sat between two sixty-five year olds on an airplane and heard more about draining knees, lanced boils and reconstructed hips than I ever wanted to hear. But, and this is depressing, now I sort of get it. The other day, I said “It’s not good for liver health,” and meant it. My body has started playing tricks on me by temporarily shutting down necessary sections, joints and valves. This includes knees, eyes, my lower back and butt. This has led to my verbing nouns like ‘lotioning,’ ‘hanging-over,’ and ‘verbing.’ I have also learned the joys of something called stool softeners and I worship an ingenious medicine called Tums.
  4. Phraseology. I avoided it as long as I could, but one day I noticed that I had just used the phrase “when I was a kid.” I followed that up a couple of days later with “In my day.” It got worse from there and pretty soon nary a day went by that I didn’t use “Nowadays,” “In those days” or, the acme of all geriatric exclamations, “Kids today.” I can’t make this easier on you, there is no preparation and it will hurt.

So, how do you deal with these things when they start happening? First of all, don’t fight it. Don’t buy a toupee, don’t buy a shiny, red car and don’t try to date someone twenty years younger named Bambi. The best advice is to just go with the flow and enjoy the occasional perk that comes along with getting older. These include people calling you sir or ma’am and old people not hating you as much.

Moreover, you can respond with occasional days of rebellion against your age. Spend one night a month out until 4 a.m. Let a youngster bring you to a concert you would otherwise never attend in a million years. Or, schedule a day that you know you are going to pay dearly for – like Whiskey Day, Thrash Metal Day or Pizza Day.

The longest day of the week is always the day after Pizza Day, or as I call it now, Tums Day.

What’s the best “Day” to keep you feeling young?

  1. #1 by Chris on November 28, 2011 - 6:58 pm

    I agree with so much of this, particularly about not going out because I want to read my book. My day is Hulmeville day. I go there a lot but only for a beer or two before going back to my lair. When I go there for a ‘day’ and indulge in extremely strong beers for 4 hours I don’t move the next day. Which, ironically, I usually spend reading.

  2. #2 by Andy on November 28, 2011 - 7:58 pm

    I don’t have a “day” for things; it is more of a simple appreciation for delayed gratification. I recently had a very animated and pleasurable conversation concerning the benefits of paying off loans early rather than spending extra cash on a vacation…er, holiday. I scoffed at the idea of purchasing a new laptop when the current one is still “okay”. I recently said “put a sweater on” instead of turning up the thermostat.

    Of course, I also found myself in New Orleans over Halloween and experienced the most terrifying example of my “oldness” when I had to restrain myself from calling the front desk to complain about the loud college students in the adjacent room. Without admitting too many embarrassing details, I’ll just assure you that it was way too early on a Friday night for me to be that crotchety in that city on that weekend. Alas.

    Most poignantly, I slept in this weekend for the first time in a while. I made it all the way to 9am…and was stunned at “how late” I slept.

Comments are closed.