According to Sam and Jim Commenting on things that irk us off, make us laugh out loud or just seem too weird too believe According to Sam and Jim: Grow Old Gracefully or Just Grow Old Without Grace

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Grow Old Gracefully or Just Grow Old Without Grace

Sam and I saw this slogan in a window in Olympia today: “Refuse to grow old gracefully.” What a load of crap!

One of the tragic consequences of our youth-oriented society is that so many of us old geezers are afraid to admit and embrace our ages because we fear becoming irrevelant in our youth-worshipping culture. If you don’t believe we are becoming irrevelant, just watch television on any given night. Or try to listen to hip-hop music. Or buy clothes that aren’t labeled “slim fit.”

It’s sad that we try so hard to deny our age. Kathleen and I went out to dinner the other night and this woman came in the restaurant, who was obviously aging but didn’t want to give in to it. Her gray hair was cut short and spiky and “foiled”- I think they call it - with streaks of blond. She looked like a Phyllis Diller graveyard resurrection. Her face was so made up I couldn’t be sure she actually had skin. Her eyes were black with mascara and eye liner and God knows what else. She wore jean s with the bottoms rolled up, high heels, a gold chain around her waist for a belt and a loud (I mean LOUD) green shirt or sweater - I don’t totally remember because I was starting to go blind about then. She was trying so hard to be young and kicky and fashionable that she kept glancing over at me to see if I noticed. Sad. Very sad. If I had to wake up to someone like that in the morning, I think I’d ask the Big Guy to just go ahead and take me.

Men, of course, are prone to trying to stay young too. That’s why we’re constantly bombarded with advertisements for potency pills that could (oops!) give us four-hour erections, testosterone that we swab under our arms and could make young girls reach puberty early, pills that control our bladders, and why you see guys with their shirts open to their navels, gold chains around their necks and big, gawdy gold rings on their fingers, wedging their beer bellies into their Corvettes or similar vehicles.

According to one religious definition, grace is God giving his greatest treasure to the least deserving—which is every one of us. That means if you refuse to grow old gracefully, you are refusing God’s blessing. Sam and I totally believe that. We know several older people (even older than me) who are wonderfully graceful - I can think of Kathleen’s uncle Sid, a wonderfully kind and gracious man. I think of my friend Paul, as full of beans as he can be, but a genuine person to the core and a guy who always makes other people feel good about themselves. I think of my friend Maggie who, even though she suffers from MS does not complain and who always has a dog treat for Sam. I think of my wife’s mother who has welcomed me into her family and said in a recent birthday card that my presence in the family made it richer and happier.

So, why not grow old gracefully? You can refuse, but that will cause you so much angst. Go with the flow little babies. You’ll be much happier. Forget the Botox treatments and working out frantically at the gym and lifting sagging jowls and replacing body parts every time you can afford it. We all are getting older, every day, and we all are going to die. If getting there is half the fun, why don’t we just relax and enjoy the trip? Three bags of poop on refusing to age gracefully.

Excuse me now, I think I’m going to have a senior movement.

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