There’s No Getting Around It: Old Is Old

Holy crap, or more to the point, holy shit, I’m getting old. Old, as in old. I mean, how is this possible? I used to think that the rules didn’t apply to me. I don’t like this game!

Not until my most recent birthday, though, did I ever feel the least bit depressed about the advancing years. But when I spun the dial six months ago and it landed on the big 7-0, I gulped. Then I gulped again. Then I said to myself, “Neil, you’ve been around a looong time. In your head you might feel no different than you did when you were 45. But times have changed. The wrinkles on your face are multiplying faster than amoebae. Not to mention that your ass is starting to look as grainy as a minute steak. And the hairs on your head? Cowboy, there are fewer of those than there are fingers on your hands.”

“Man, the days when the occasional girl would give you the eye are gone, gone, gone,” I continued. “At this point, if a girl ever looks you over it’s gonna be because she has a case of myopia so severe she would mistake a McDonald’s sign for a rainbow. Neil, your glory days, as sadly placid as they were, are so far in the rear view mirror they in effect predate the Old Testament. You’re in the home stretch, fella, even if that stretch lasts another 25 years.”

Seconds after that cheery monologue ended I was on the verge of emitting a multitude of tears. Fortunately, I remembered that crying isn’t manly, so I merely wept very gingerly and very quietly. When the drippage came to its conclusion I shrunk off to a corner and stayed there until, my bladder near-exploding, I had to answer nature’s call. I haven’t returned to that corner since then, though I’ve been tempted to do so.

Fast cut to the present day. Gentle readers, I’m here to tell you that I’ve seen the light. Moonlight, specifically, because on the evening of March 31 my phone rang. My childhood pal Mike was on the line. (We grew up in a town outside of New York City, and now reside 20 miles apart in suburban Philadelphia. Yeah, we’re stalking one another).

Mike, an astronomy buff of sorts, was calling to inform me that a Blue Moon was making its appearance, that it was the second Blue Moon of the year (the first having been in January), and that I should go out and look at it because a Blue Moon in each of two months within the same calendar year wouldn’t happen again until 2037. That’s a lot of info, especially for someone whose brain is as old as mine. I barely knew what he was talking about, but I did what Mike suggested.

The Moon was a beautiful sight. Of course, it wasn’t blue at all, Blue Moon being a phenomenon that refers not to hue. Instead it denotes the second full moon that occurs within a given month (a somewhat rare event, though not freakishly so). “Hey, if you’ve seen one full moon, you’ve seen ’em all,” I hear you saying? Uh-uh, not if you’re someone like me who 90% of the time forgets to look up when he’s out at night.

From my front lawn on March 31 I gazed hard and fairly long at the rock in the sky. It was not far above the horizon and it was huge and bright. I asked it to smile and say cheese before I took its picture, to no avail. “I don’t smile,” it said to me. “That’s not the way I roll.” I couldn’t argue with that, of course, and proceeded to document the moment. My phone’s camera doesn’t capture nighttime images too sharply, but I’m shoving that moon photo into this article nonetheless. I kind of like it despite its graininess. It reminds me of my aforementioned ass.

What does admiring the Moon have to do with feeling less than chipper about entering the stratosphere, age-wise? Well, a lot, actually. Yeah, I’ve traveled plenty farther down life’s highway than I wish was the case, but there probably are — what? — three billion members of humanity who feel the same way. All that any of us can do is keep on keepin’ on, with our heads held high and our hearts and five senses open to greet the good people and good stuff around us. No point getting too down about the nature of the cosmic set-up. We come and we go, just like everything else, even stars so large they make our Sun appear puny. I don’t particularly like that set-up, but what can you say?  It is what it is, as the truest of truisms goes.

I’m not the sort who ever will attain a relentlessly positive attitude about life. Never have been. But I get a charge out of more than a few things on a pretty regular basis. Not long after the day of my 70th I stuck the Unhappy Birthday card that I’d delivered to myself into my back pocket. I’ve been doing what I can to keep it there, out of sight and mind. As I’m typing this essay right now, picking up from where I left off the night before, I’m enjoying a cup of coffee and looking out a window at a gloriously foggy morning. I’m going to step outside for a few minutes to admire the fog. And I’ll take its picture. Onward we go.

(Don’t be shy about adding your comments or about sharing this story on social media or via email. Gracias.)

(If you click on the photos, larger images will open in separate windows.)

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125 thoughts on “There’s No Getting Around It: Old Is Old

  1. theburningheart April 13, 2018 / 12:07 pm

    Somehow your reflections about old age reminds me of Charlton Heston, and Edward G Robinson in that old movie Soylent Green, by the mere fact the title they choose in Spanish wasn’t Soylent Green, but “The day when destiny, will finally catch up with us.”
    Which it’s pretty much as the day we finally realize, we can start singing along with old blue eyes:

    And now, the end is near
    And so I face the final curtain
    My friend, I’ll say it clear
    I’ll state my case, of which I’m certain.

    Easier said, than done…

    We are with you, keep the good spirits! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, Another Blogger April 13, 2018 / 1:36 pm

      Hi, and thanks a lot for adding your thoughts.
      Wow, those lyrics are depressing! I hadn’t realized that before. Frank Sinatra, though, stuck around for a lot of years after he recorded that song.

      Enjoy the weekend., Be seeing you —

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Aunt Beulah April 13, 2018 / 6:33 pm

    Yes, onward we go. And since I’ve gone on five more years than you, I don’t have a lot of sympathy for you, you young whippersnapper.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. cmwriter April 16, 2018 / 6:46 pm

    Glad the fog is lifting. Still a lot of good stuff out there!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. writenlive April 19, 2018 / 4:17 am

    Moonlit nights and foggy mornings is the stuff magic is made of! You seem to be doing great, enjoying the best life is giving you.

    I can totally relate to the rules not applying to me! I never thought I could get older, get creaky joints, lose stamina…just like that.

    I can’t even swear at these things because in my times, swearing was unladylike.

    And bless Mike, your friend for being there. Childhood friends bring in perspective. You two stalk each other on phone? These days, I think it can be done via social media 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, Another Blogger April 19, 2018 / 7:00 am

      Hi. Thanks for the visit. Yeah, it’s good to have childhood friends. Mike and I see each other regularly.

      Like

  5. Quirky Girl April 27, 2018 / 8:12 pm

    Hope you had a wonderful birthday! In so many respects, age seems rather irrelevant. Life is much more about how you feel and how you chose to live, rather than any limitations imposed by meaningless numbers. I work with a 70-something year old lady with enough sass and energy to put any 20-something year old person to shame! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  6. myowncalcuttablog.com April 30, 2018 / 6:33 pm

    I know a lot of seventy year olds who can run circles around people half their age…enjoy your seventies! Awesome blog post!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. daveclapp May 3, 2018 / 8:06 am

    Yup, at 72 I can share your unease about advancing years. But one advantage is that you can admire a much broader age range of ladies some of whom might give us a second glance.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. englishrose659 May 8, 2018 / 7:26 pm

    I know what you mean, and I like your relativistic way of approaching it. I have to say I kind of like being in my fifties…. doubtless because infirmity hasn’t yet set in. I don’t care if men don’t look at me, I never noticed whether they did or not when I was younger anyway. Old is good so far.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, Another Blogger May 8, 2018 / 9:23 pm

      Hi English Rose. Thanks for the visit. The fifties are a good age range. I’d like to be back in ’em!
      See you —

      Like

  9. Alice Letters to my Daughter May 16, 2018 / 3:29 pm

    There’s old in body and there’s old in mind. My dad is 73 but certainly not what I would call ‘old’!

    And congratulations because someone loved this post so much, they added it to the #BlogCrush linky! Feel free to collect your “I’ve been featured” blog badge 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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