Some hints that you may be getting old

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Old 02-18-2008, 05:58 AM
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Default Some hints that you may be getting old

From Sunday's Orlando Slantinal:
http://tinyurl.com/3379mf


Some hints that you may be getting old
Bard Lindeman

Special To The Sentinel

February 17, 2008

When does old age begin? Is 80 truly the new 40? Or is chronically irreverent Woody Allen telling us something when he quips, "Death is the new life"?

One accepted theory teaches that people become "old" when others treat them as old. To help you avoid premature labeling, here are a variety of ways to test your current age:

*You're old if you say, "What would I do with a computer? A pencil and pad work fine for me!"

*If you think an "iPod" is a device to reduce inner-ear wax, you need to have a talk with the grandchildren. The 8-year-olds, that is.

*If you think "Amazon.com" is a port town on a South American river 3,700 miles long, then you are older than you know.

*You're older than you look if you ask the grandchildren whether they know how to "roller skate."

*If you read the obituaries before you read this column, then you are dating yourself.

*If you insist on driving 5 mph under the posted speed limit in the Express Lane, then you are old! And turn off your directional, Pops.

*If you believe the term "eBay" is straight out of the Old Testament, well, then you're old! Selah.

*If I say "Blackberry" and you answer, "Fruit," you need a refresher course in News You Can Use.

*If I say movie star and you answer, "Shirley Temple," then you need to subscribe to Entertainment Weekly or The New Yorker.

*You know you're old if when I say "American Idol" you picture John McCain in his naval uniform, circa the Vietnam War.

*If you believe "hip-hop" is a sidewalk game played by young girls with chalk and extra time, sorry, you're slipping out of touch.

*You're definitely older than most when you ask, "I look OK in these lime-green Bermuda shorts, don't I?"

*If there are more medicine bottles in your bathroom than fingers on one hand, you are becoming familiar with old age. Sorry.

*If two or more plastic surgeons are on your speed dial, then you're well on your way toward the goofy stage.

*If the subjects "cruising" and "midnight buffets" dominate your conversation, then you're dating yourself and boring your friends.

Moreover, you definitely are older, and misguided, if you 1) neglect to have a will drawn; 2) put off getting a flu shot; 3) take NO exercise, stubbornly pretending you're too tired or too old, and 4) continue to smoke cigarettes, rationalizing: "We have so few pleasures left . . ."

Nonsense! As far back as the Romans, learned men instructed that "Old age must be resisted; we must fight old age as we would a disease." Author Malcolm Cowley wrote in The View From 80 (Viking Press; 1980) "the men and women I envy are those who accept old age as a series of challenges."

The late and learned Cowley also campaigned in the name of older adults, stating: " . . . old people would like to have a clearly defined place and function in American life; it is something they now lack." Indeed, for the term old, in our culture, is akin to a four-letter word.

GRAY NOTES: Celebrate American Heart Month (February) with this quote: "It is one of the greatest feats in medical history that the disease called coronary atherosclerosis, which clogs up our heart's normally pristine arteries, has been transformed into an everyday, manageable problem for most patients." Dr. Bernadine Healy, cardiologist, wrote this in U.S. News & World Report. She credits medical science (surgery; especially the implantation of stents) plus "the acceptance of the once revolutionary concept of prevention." . . . Said another way: "Eat smart, exercise often and don't smoke!" . . . Send belated birthday wishes to Frank Woodruff Buckles, who just turned 107. Retired Cpl. Buckles is the last surviving World War I soldier or Doughboy (Source: Newsweek) . . . Lastly, wrinkles are said to be hereditary. Yes, you get them from your children.


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