Friday, February 18, 2011


Keep away from the numbers.

Keep away from any food, food supplements, pills, talk shows, recreations, any advisor, friend, therapist, counselor, TV doctor, real living doctor -- keep away from everyone, except parents or a spouse who may accidentally use the phrase " At your age you should be ... at your age your shouldn't ..."

Keep away from specifics such as I should be earning a good living. That's deadly. Also historical summaries: At age ____other artists in my field were already established.

Banish those numbers, banish all thoughts like that. If one occurs, if you or someone utters it, reach for the floor, then stand tall, tall as you can, and then up another inch, and count 30 chimpanzees.

Beware of "a person my age shouldn't wear...." Beware of "a person my age can't ... "

If you' trying to sell a book, play, or style, or painting -- land a job, go to college, get a degree, learn a new language, craft, skill, technology, DO NOT THINK ABOUT age , do not wonder if ANYONE ELSE has tried AT YOUR AGE to become a famous, successful, income-producing anything.

Just do it.

Watch out for age-cliches, age-rationales, age as a factor.

Never think at my age I need a flu shot, vitamins, must keep my weight down, exercise, walk, jog and, while it's ok to be aware of bladder control, avoid why am I forgetting things, why didn't I hear that -- that lead to bad conclusions about how often you need to see the doctor, the dentist, the eye doctor.

See doctors if or when you absolutely need to.

Also, if you're registering or joining something that asks your age, lop off a large chunk of years. If you can't lie, then skip whatever it is.

The 2008 World Science Festival panel said "Age 90 Is the new 50.” I don't think 90 is even the new 70. But if age 90 IS the number that says you are old, think of Betty White, 89, and Warren Buffet, age 80, and if you're actually approaching that age bracket, don't utter, mutter, or murmur it to anyone, including yourself.

Finally, should you celebrate your birthday? If you get cards, glance at the return address, and throw them out before opening the envelope. You can't stop relatives from saying "happy birthday" but dear friends, people you grew up with should be studiously avoided.

Aging gracefully is easy if you do the things I've mentioned above, carefully, discreetly and gracefully.


Carolyn Kalmus said...

Graceful or not, I'm still doing fine at 69 and don't plan on ever giving up birthday cake or birthday cards that wish me well on my special day of the year. So there! ;-)

JD Cullum said...

No! Mustn't throw out the card before opening it! Aunt Gladys may have sent you a crisp twenty or a coupon for Olive Garden!

Carola said...

I get your point, but it doesn't bother me to tell people my age, or to think about what I can or can't do at my age: because usually I find I am youthful for my age.

Linda Phillips said...

I love birthdays. I celebrate mine for a week. I love cards. I love gifts, although now a days, most of my birthday gifts come from ME to ME! I aways buy myself at least one nice birthday present each year and when i had significant others, they were told...THIS IS WHAT I WANT FOR MY BIRTHDAY (OR CHRISTMAS). I never lie about my age. I earned it. I only lied when I was a teenager and had to make myself OLDER to date older men. One poor guy wound up paying extra to take me to the World's Fair, because I had lied and said I was 19, when I was only 17!