Recently I read in the UK press that 1 in 6 of us will reach our 100th birthday. I’m not sure I want to reach that milestone, but since we don’t have much say over how long we last, I figure that if I do get really old I might as well enjoy the advantages it does bring. Like these …
1. Being Obnoxious
Have you ever noticed that old people seem to consider it their god-given right to be rude – or as they call it, ‘speaking my mind’? So since we’ve probably all been on the receiving end of snide senior remarks, or pushed out of the way by vicious old ladies in shops, then it’s only fair that we act the same way when our turn comes!
2. Outliving Everyone
The following statement is absolutely true. My mother reads the obituaries in the local paper to see if anyone she knows has died. For older people, there seems to be a kind of triumph in outliving their contemporaries, as if you get bonus points for everyone who pops off before you do.
3. Being Waited on
Old people are master manipulators. They’ve learned that they only have to look a bit helpless, and people rush to do things for them. The fact is that some of them are pretty sprightly, but hey, why do something yourself if you can get someone else to do it for you?
4. When I Was Young …
One of the joys of getting older is that whatever the situation, you can trot out that well-worn phrase ‘It wasn’t like this when I was young!’ Admittedly, you don’t have to be that old to mutter about how things have changed – even in your twenties, things seem different. But old people can use the phrase all the time, and with even more justification.
When you’re young, you’re constantly wishing that you were older so that you could do more. When you get to be really old though, every day is a bonus. Since old people don’t really have too much time left, they tend to appreciate the simple things in life, because they know that you can’t take it with you.
Have you ever seen one of those articles in the paper with a photo of five generations of the same family? The older you get, the more generations you see come into the world. So you can collect grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and triumph over your competitors at the nursing home by beating them in the number of descendents stakes.
I know one old lady who is not far off reaching her centenary, and during her life she has seen so many events and changes. Even in my lifetime there have been huge changes in technology and world events, so imagine how much more old people have witnessed.
It’s amazing what old people get away with, just because they’ve got a few more years on the clock than the rest of us. They can be rude, say things that anyone else couldn’t get away with, and people just say, ‘Well, he’s old’, as if that excuses anything! So when we get to that stage of life, let’s all make the most of it!
What do you plan to be like when you get old – are you going to grow old disgracefully and make a hobby out of annoying everyone?
Top Photo Credit: Ed Yourdon