Aging Well in the Gorge April 28th, 2021

Along my journey of growing older, I desperately tried to avoid my preconceived ideas of what old looked like: wearing hearing aids - which now I wouldn’t live without; or using a pill box - until there were too many days when I couldn’t recall if I took my morning pills or not!

Since I’ve passed those two milestones, I’ve started thinking that instead of denying my age I should celebrate my “oldness” and the accompanying joys. (I’ll leave the challenges for another day.)

But what is old? We’ve all heard it is ten years older than you are now, (which I am continuing to find surprising accurate) but is there a better way to know? So, for those of you who are curious, I found this list of “scientifically validated” indicators of old age. See how you compare with my answers.

1.      You fall asleep watching TV or reading the paper. No, but at 3:00 I do start nodding off.

2.      You become forgetful. Yes, but it’s no different than the twentysomething who can’t remember what I just ordered on my Subway sandwich!

3.      You groan when getting up from a chair or out of bed. No, but for some reason my wife thinks I do. 

4.     You say ‘back in my day’. No, I say “back in the good old days”.

5.     You have an afternoon nap. Yes, but they are now “power naps”.

6.     You don't know the names of current celebrities. I do - if they are over 65.

7.     You have a low tolerance for teenagers. No. I find teenagers great. It brings back fond memories of my youth without having to relive those days.

8.     You only listen to music from your youth. No. I listen to contemporary music that sounds like music from my youth.

Over halfway through and looking good.

9.      You choose places to eat because they play quiet music. Yes, because I want to hear who I am talking with  - which is not easy wearing hearing aids.

10.     Choosing to meet friends for lunch or dinner rather than a night out for drinks. Yes. I need to be in bed by 9:00.

11.     You spend weekends or holidays in garden centers. No. I try to stay out of the garden - that’s my wife’s domain – thankfully.

12.     Gardening is a hobby. No. See above

13.     You forget where your glasses are. Yes, but I always find them - on my head!

14.     You choose clothes for comfort rather than style. Yes, because who am I trying to impress?

15.     You get a haircut to ‘suit your age’. No, because I’m still figuring out what my age is.

So how did you do? Did you do better than my 9 out of 15 “no” answers? If so let’s go out and celebrate – but please, not too long!

The members of the 1985 country music supergroup The Highwaymen were Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and Kris Kristofferson. I received correct answers from Steven Woolpert, Barbara Cadwell, Susan Ellis, John McEwen, Jess Birge, Gene Uczen, Lana Tepfer, Tina Castanares, Keith Clymer, Margo Dameier, Mike Yarnell, Rose Schulz, Jim and Jennifer Stager, Doug Nelson and Joy Nicholson this week’s winner of a free quilt raffle ticket. And last week I missed Beverly Thomas and Doug Nelson.

Remember when doctors and even Santa Claus were used to selling cigarettes on television? That ended at 11:50 pm on January 1st, 1971, when the last cigarette advertisement ran on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson. For this week’s “Remember When” question, what was the brand of cigarette in that television ad that tried to cash in on the women's liberation movement with the tag line "You've come a long way, baby." E-mail your answers to mcseniorcenter@gmail.com, call 541-296-4788 or send it with a short history of the Women’s Tennis Association. 

Well, it has been another week trying to decide which way is up. Until we meet again, as they said in the old west, “Poor is having to sell the horse to buy the saddle.”

“There are six myths about old age: 1. That it’s a disease, a disaster. 2. That we are mindless. 3. That we are sexless. 4. That we are useless. 5. That we are powerless. 6. That we are all alike.” – Maggie Kuhn

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