So What Do You Wanna Talk About?
Getting old stinks!
Granted, the alternative to growing old isn't so great...and I much prefer the aging process to the dying process...but there are things about growing old that really ruin the moment.
Case in point.
When I was five-years old, there was no politics, there was no 24-hour news channel, there was no global warming, there was no Muslim vs Christian, Muslim vs Jew, Muslims vs The Gypsies, or any other issues that seem important to our adult minds. Only two things mattered: (1) Cartoons, and (2) What's for dinner? And that's what we talked about. We debated which of the Superfriends was the most powerful. We racked our brains to figure out exactly what kind of creature H.R. Puff'n'Stuff was. We pondered why Weird Harold wore a pink lampshade on his head on "Fat Albert." We anxiously awaited the next perilous excursion that Wyle E. Coyote would take in pursuit of the Roadrunner. And we wondered what kind of casseroles our mothers would whip up for dinner...and how we could sneak it to the dog.
By the time I turned 10, my focus switched to sports. The Texas Rangers and the Dallas Cowboys occupied my every thought. I practiced batting like Mike Hargrove (a.k.a., The Human Rain Delay). I dreamed of being Roger Staubach or Danny White, throwing a winning touchdown pass in the waning moments to Drew Pearson or Tony Hill. I would defend the Fearsome Foursome against any Steel Curtain discussion that anyone could dream up. And I begged people to quiz me about who the starting infield was for the Rangers in 1977 (Mike Hargrove (1b); Bump Wills (2b); Toby Harrah (3b); Bert Campaneris (ss))
By the middle of my teenage years, I was still into sports...but then I began to recognize why God made woman and said that it was VERY good. I also began listening to a brand of music that my parents didn't understand. So in between discussions of who was the epitome of "fine": Beth Sullivan or Kathy Jo McAteer (the best that Southwest High School had to offer!), my friends and I would discuss the newest offering from U2, R.E.M., INXS, or any of the other once-known-as-Alternative-Rock bands of the '80s.
By college we had become MUCH more mature. Our conversations turned to our careers and our future. "What do you wanna do with your life?" or "What should I major in?" followed quickly by, "WHOA, who's that blonde over there?!?!?!"
Once college is over you start talking about family. About money. About that next promotion. About becoming successful. About goals. You talk about dreams and aspirations with the one you love. And you talk about growing old together.
And then one night, you're 36-years old, and you're sitting on a couch in your home watching your bride's eyes well up with tears as she learns of another friend's shattered marriage. And your discussions turn to exclamations of despair on how a woman could leave a husband and four children.
Earlier you made a trip to the other side of town to purchase prescription medication for a clinically depressed college student that can't seem to make wise decisions. And your conversation centers around a slew of "I promise to do better" and "Why don't you or my parents trust me?"
That morning you went to the hospital with some friends who came to town for the birth of their daughter's first baby...only there was no father there to share in the joy. Instead of rejoicing over the baby you contemplate aloud with half-excited, half-sorrowful parents on how a single mom can be a full-time student and care for an infant.
You talk about your parents getting older, your kids getting wilder, your back getting sorer, and the bald spot on your head getting bigger.
Thank God that tomb was empty!
Anyone for being five again???