Opinion

There’s not much glister in those ‘golden’ years

By Country News

Golden years? Bulls*#t. Give me denial any day.

A few years ago we had been spending some time in the city (alright, yes, for a medical procedure or two of the mature gentleman variety) and in between probes, the missus insisted on dragging me along to see a couple of shows.

During one of them I did nod off — briefly.

The other film kept me laughing enough to keep me awake.

Also, thank God, it was well under two hours instead of the drawn-out sagas so many filmmakers tend to inflict on us these days.

The first one we saw was Last Vegas, about a bunch of 70-somethings who gathered in Sin City for a buck's night for the last of their little group to tie the knot.

As this hold-out was played by Michael Douglas it came as no surprise the wife-to-be was less than half his age.

Anyhoo, cutting a long story short, there were plenty of laughs and, as is the American want, it all worked out in the end.

From there we were dragged to what is euphemistically known as an art house to see an indie movie (at which point I reached for my own dictionary).

Called Nebraska, it was a black-and-white (ah, the memories) about a deadbeat dad fixated on the idea he had won $1 million.

Of course, his wife and two sons knew it was a scam, but that did not stop this old coot from trying to walk the 800 miles from his house to the office of the ‘competition'.

So what has this to do with the old Curmudgeon and/or you?

To be honest, in my case at least, it is all about the elephant in the room.

Age. Or clocking up too much of it.

After decades of denial, I have finally moved on from thinking I am still 18.

I now know I am stuck somewhere in my mid 30s.

Well my brain is, anyway.

The rest of me, however, is still insistent on that thirty-something.

But these two movies hammered home a message I have been marking ‘return to sender’ for longer than Elvis.

Everyone else around me is getting older at an accelerating rate.

The missus, the kids, the grandkids.

So how is it that yours truly is stuck in some time warp where he is eternally young?

Well, you have to work at it.

Starting with the ritual of arising each morning.

That slow roll onto your side so you can ease yourself into the sitting position without pulling a muscle in your back.

Then with both feet firmly planted on the floor you push yourself carefully into the upright, followed by a few steps towards your clothes.

One of the kids calls this the Rice Bubbles moment as my joints start to snap, crackle and pop.

Then it's back down onto the side of the bed so socks and shoes can be pulled on before I lurch across the bedroom and out the door.

Thank heavens for modern medicine.

At breakfast the missus has our pills lined up — the blood pressure, the cholesterol, the vitamins, occasionally the Stemetil for that occasional

dizziness, and all washed down with the omega-3 and the shark cartilage for old Col’s cartilage.

Then I am ready to face the day.

And hardly a day over 32, which I must tell you I have always considered the perfect age.

Old enough to know a lot, old enough to be taken seriously by old people and young enough to conquer the world.

Now where was I?

Damn, I must have forgotten my memory pills.