Hello all my crazy young friends and relatives,
"Gettin' old ain't for sissies!" I saw that on a bumper sticker on the back of a Cadillac flying down the road at about 75 mph and thought to myself, how true it is. When I was a kid 60-years-old seemed as far away as Mars. I can remember back when I was in the fourth grade, my sister, Janis, seemed very old and grownup to me. She was 16 and a junior in high school at the time. She seemed so worldly-wise and mature. Isn't it funny how our perspective changes.
I recently went around the bend, turning 60 on October 14. My much older friends, like John Wold and Ken Flurry, tell me not to sweat it. They say that 60 is the new 40. However, my body never received that memo. My body thinks that 60 sucks big time. Let me give you an example.
On my birthday, Ramel kicked me out of bed at the unnatural hour of 7 AM, kidnapped me and forced me to drive her out to Sherwood where we ate a hearty breakfast at Rose's. She had an omelet, I had chicken-fried steak. Then, she forced me to drive her to McMinnville to spend 5 hours at the Aeronautics and Space Museum where Howard Hughs' "Spruce Goose" is hangered. Seriously, that place is awesome! I could live there. I especially loved all the WWII aircraft on display. They have a B-17 "Flying Fortress" in cherry, airworthy condition. Ramel paid the extra $4 and insisted that I take the guided tour through the B-17. I fought her on it but lost. Anyway, as I was standing there awaiting my turn I was chewing a piece of Big Red gum. All of a sudden, one of my back teeth fell out, or at least the crown and half the tooth came out and I chomped it up with the gum. Yuck! My point is, my body knew that it was my 60th birthday and so some internal mechanism sent out a message saying, "He's old now, let his teeth start falling out."
That may not be exactly what happened but that is how it felt at the time. I don't like getting old. I'm not doing it gracefully. I plan to kick and scream and pitch a fit about it.
P.S. I wrote this entry in this big bold script because some of you are getting a little long in the tooth too. I thought it might be easier to read for some of my really old friends.
Your crazy ol' pal,