I’m not old yet, but I’m slowly but surely getting there. It doesn’t help that I have a teenage son. I’m sure he’s helped add a few gray hairs to my head over the past few years. On my last birthday, a friend gave me a poster of the Grim Reaper as a present. He jokingly told me to hang it on my wall and wait. He said, at my age it was only a matter of time. I told him, “The Grim Reaper doesn’t scare me. I’ve been married nineteen years. There’s not much that scares me any more.”
As I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized that money doesn’t always buy happiness. I have a nice big house now, and I’m happy, but I remember my first apartment after marrying my wife. It was less than a thousand square feet of clutter and used furniture, paper-thin walls, one tiny bathroom, and a kitchen so small only one person could fit in it at time. Money was tight and my wife was pregnant with our son. Do you know something? It was probably the happiest time of my life. I do have one thing I wish were different. How come when we’re young and cool, we can never afford to drive around in those expensive and powerful sports cars? Sometimes guys in their seventies and eighties will pass me doing a hundred miles per hour in bright red, corvette convertibles. They have big smiles on their faces, and what’s left of their white hair is blowing in the wind. I guess they’re still pretty cool, but wouldn’t it be great to be doing it at twenty?
Getting older isn’t too bad. I’ll soon have an excuse when my wife wakes me at five in the morning to ask if I want to do something crazy, like run a marathon. “Sorry sweetheart, but the old arthritis is acting up again.” Old men can also say ridiculous and sometimes crazy things and no one cares. My grandfather used to call me a “rascally young whipper snapper.” To this day I haven’t a clue about what he was talking about. You can also wear cool Bermuda shorts with black knee-high socks and dress shoes, and no ones laughs at you. Once I reach a certain age, I’ll be able to hang out at malls and stare at women without getting slapped, putter around, be grumpy, and pass gas at family functions without having to blame the family dog. As you get older you’re also allowed to forget things, without getting in serious trouble. Forget your wedding anniversary or your wife’s birthday when you’re thirty, and what happens? Don’t even ask. It’s too horrifying to think about. Forget special occassions at eighty, and she just figures you’re going senile, and forgives you.