March 02, 2016

Horse 2084 - I Am Old (But Not Old Old)

As I was standing on the 243 bus to Neutral Bay this on Friday afternoon (Friday 26th), a lady who looked far too young to be having children, told her son to get up so that a man could have the seat. I was expecting to see some chap with a walking stick and didn't find anyone and it immediately became apparent that the man that she was giving her seat up for, was me.

Now apart from the fact that even at the age of 37 (I had to calculate that because it's so irrelevant to me) I still find being called a "man" somewhat jarring, the fact that I was considered old enough for someone to consider giving up their seat for is nothing short of mind blowing. Seriously; like wow man, what is going on?
Mathematically speaking, I were to die at exactly twice the age I am now (which would be 74 years old), then nobody in particular is going to think that would be some great tragedy. A 74 year old man who dies is utterly normal. Furthermore if you were to triple 37, you get 111 (I know this because of the game Dive¹). Someone aged 111 is well old; therefore I’m definitely into that middle third.

Okay, time's pesky little urchins have arrived and have spray painted my temples in grey, my close up eyesight is on the verge of fading out to a blurry mess and hæmorroids have come to visit but I honestly didn't think that I was 'old'. If the average life expectancy is 84, then that means that I technically entered the middle third of my life as many as seven years ago and am thus 'middle aged',  so that can only mean that I've been living in the county of Denial for a long time. That just means that I have a more complete mailing address for my terrace house on Pedant Corner, Grumpy Towers, Dunny-On-The-Wold (what is a Wold² anyway?).

I've already found that modern music has berm annoying for quite some time, my radio mainly stays on ABC News Radio, Radio National and 702 ABC Sydney, I would rather go somewhere quiet than a place full of noise and it is true that tweed is starting to look interesting to me but surely I can't be that far down the line, can I?
The fact that I left high school almost twenty years ago, that I've been waiting for Liverpool to win the league for twenty-six years, that I can remember the days before the internet, before the GST, and that I've started to use phrases like "I can remember" and "kids today", aught to have been enough to give me the idea that I'm old but maybe I'm just adding forgetfulness and stupidity together to get senility.
By your powers combined, I am Captain Old Git. Even my cultural references are old hat and withering on the vine.

I've already done that thing where you walk into a room and forget why you walked in there. Kinder people would suggest that this is to do with efficiencies in the brain; dumping old information as the head that it is contained in, passes across a threshold an across a memory horizon. There's probably some fancy pants pseudo-scientific name for it but really it can be described with those three little words "sad old git".
I'm not so old that I need to know where the nearest lavatory is at all times but I do like the idea of having adequate reading material on hand before one does enter the smallest room in the building and become enthroned upon the Royal Doulton. On that front, I like the works of Quentin Letts, Jeremy Clarkson, George Orwell or Seneca because in a weird sort of way, I like to be reminded of melancholia whilst performing what should be a serene action. It's also worth remembering that Mama Cass and Elvis Presley dies whilst on the lav. History records that they probably died of a heart attack but the most logical explanation that I can think of is that someone must've walked in on them. Ten Thousand Thundering Typhoons, what d'ya think you're doin', man?

I will admit to watching television and conveniently having darkness descend as I am watching, then waking up two minutes before the end and wonder what the point of staying out on the couch was. I'll also admit to lying awake in the middle of the night, worrying about the results of a football match that I can't watch and running around the four walls of my mind like some confined beast. How is it that I'm able to invent the most fantastic devices and designs in my head, only to have them all flit away at the first remembrance. Also, can someone tell me the point of waking up at 02:27am to remember a thing from five weeks ago that I couldn't recall at the time? What's the point of that?

Fair enough, this whole blog post has been something of a ramble where I've forgotten half way through what the point was; so maybe that does prove that I'm probably closer to grave than what I thought but does that mean that I'm so old that someone thinks it worthy enough to give their seat on the bus? Actually... I'm old enough that I could have been her dad. In her mind, maybe I am old enough. That's just scary.

¹Dive – a pretty neat game
²A Wold is a woodland – as in the Cotswolds or Stow-on-the-Wold

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