Showing posts with label Getting Older. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Getting Older. Show all posts

Tuesday 11 January 2022

Entertainment for Seniors

Homo Sapiens takes on Sciuridae

OK - I Googled it. Squirrels belong to a species known as Sciuridae. I am the one in the Homo Sapiens group (and so are you) - specifically that subgroup who now find themselves north of the age equator.

Many retired people prefer to spend their time on something other than cell phones and social media. I am also one of those - not sure if we have a special name. One of my pastimes - taking after my retired father may he rest in peace - is to design and make a bird feeder from scraps, that is squirrel proof. It is a battle of wits and superior grey matter. So far the score is something like Sciuridae: 5; Homo Sapiens: 0.

My only saving grace is that I will probably outlive the little bastards. Also today I broke down and bought the cheapest squirrel proof feeder I could find. Two hours later I was watching a black squirrel stuffing himself while clinging to it.

This wouldn't be so humbling if I didn't get the feeling that a virtual Madison Square Gardens (my yard) is sitting in their seats laughing at me. In their midst are: birds; racoons; skunks; rabbits; chipmunks; possums; ground hogs; and worst of all - other squirrels. I think I posted about this once before but in my subgroup - we sometimes don't remember such details (but search for "Squirrel Proof Bird Feeder, January 1, 2021). A squirrel's tail is a vital part of its agility and balance but I believe my residents are constantly hiking theirs to moon me.

I also enjoy writing verse so here is one depicting the entire saga. I call it:

Spartacus vs. Chatterbox Maximus

There are famous battles, recorded throughout time,
I offer one to head the list, in this my humble rhyme.

Wellington/Napoleon, Spiderman and Joker,
Churchill vs. Hitler, and even world class poker.

We call them heroes and villains, depending on one's view.
This will go down in history as Brewster's Waterloo.

My yard is full of critters that walk and hop and fly.
The trees have grown for decades and reach unto the sky.

They form a Colisseum - my tall trees in the round,
Offer ring side viewing, and quadraphonic sound.

They come to see the fighting, with wife and kids in toe.
I host daily bouts you see as most of them all know.

Way up high in every one you'll find a squirrel's nest.
Compared to those for miles around mine are Nature's best.

They come and stay for they all know this hotel is renowned.
The menu that I offer is the best for miles around.

It is intended for my birds as in the trees they shelter,
And when the squirrels do battle - it sounds like Helter-skelter.

That is not the main event, in fact it's amateur.
They want to see them battle me - a Super Bowl for sure.

The seats are always taken, standing room maxed out,
And you should hear the ruckus when they begin to shout.

Sometimes they will throw things and call out for my head,
The clever little rodents flash their butts at me instead.

And with my entrance to the ring a grand applause is heard,
With precious nuts upon the line but not one grateful bird.

The Artful Dodger makes his move and jumps towards the cage.
And with one tiny toe hangs on - it fills me full of rage.

I take two paces forward, and clap my hands to scare.
Instead he keeps on eating just as though I was not there.

Another jumps into the ring - a tag team I now face.
The partner then jumps straight at me and I flee in disgrace.

And then I hit upon a thought that was not in my plans.
I'll go inside and pop some corn and sell it to the fans.

Then they would help finance, the little critter's glut,
The least that they could do as they all watch him whip my butt.

Some day I know I will prevail and triumph o'er their best.
And I can brag to all the world "Squirrel Buster" on my chest!


Tuesday 31 August 2021

Some Good Things About Getting Old

Good Things About Aging? Really?

This is going to be a challenge but I have the time for it. There - that belongs in the list.

Although I am getting older I am actually still here on the right side of the grass realizing that I am getting older. Many people I used to know and love - like my parents - are not. With a minor twist on Descartes' famous saying: "I think, therefore I still am". Good for me.

When the first person addressed me as "Sir" he/she was not a child but another adult. I was pissed since they were not much younger than I was. It still happens at the gym. Now it doesn't bother me - as much! I take it as a sign that some of what my parents taught me - respect - still exists. Some people actually compliment me - then ask how old I am! Hey, there are younger people working out who don't receive the same compliments. Surely that is good.

I get to talk to some pretty amazing looking younger women who - I hope - don't feel like I am hitting on them. Maybe they do, but they don't say it! If I were their age today's women would speak their minds more bluntly than when I was younger.

I don't have to pay the unbelievably high rates for car insurance that young people do. I take satisfaction in knowing that the insurance companies have the statistics to back up the rates. They know who are the bad drivers and they are not older people.

Senior discounts - what could possibly be wrong with that - especially for golf?

Drugs - most of my prescription drugs are covered by our provincial medical plan.

Time. My time is my own. I can do whatever I want. To be honest this is probably the biggest benefit that I am wasting the most.

Getting up and going to bed or even taking a nap. I can do any of these whenever I want!

No boss - I hated having a boss and even being one. No more - I am my own. This is the one which would be the most important if there were ever a second life. I wish I had started some kind of business to be my own boss.

Grandchildren. I don't have any kids so this one is not in my list. It is however high on everyone else's list so I include it here.

Memories. This is a big one. Many people think about and live in the past - both the good times and the bad. Too much of that is bad - it can't ever be changed. So the key here is to be making NEW memories - preferable good ones.

There is some food for thought. OOPS - please don't go to the fridge! My bad.Don't get me wrong - younger is WAY better! But if you have to make the most of things this list is a start.


Sunday 22 August 2021

On Becoming Forgetful

What was that Great Beginning Again?

I had a great opening line for this post - 10 minutes ago! Damned if I can remember what it was. There are a few reasons why that does not really worry me - bother me yes - but no worries.

Firstly I recognize that I forgot something and the nature of that something. Secondly I will probably recall it later. Thirdly, I just dreamt (dreamed for some) up a different one. If my mind were really slipping, I would not be aware of any of these things. I also just corrected some grammar, spelling, and typos. 

Finally I probably could not compose the following:

I can't locate my glasses
The second time today.
Checked my head, beside the bed, 
Annoying, I must say.

We need a few small items 
I shop most every day.
And now I'm pissed - I lost the list.
Can't see it anyway!

Could things get any worse I ask?
Perhaps my brakes will seize!
I won't find out and start to shout
For I misplaced my keys!

Eventually I find all three
And set off to the store.
My day's not done, it's just begun
At least my life's no bore.

I push my cart to checkout
A light begins to flash.
To make my day I try to pay - 
No phone, no cards, no cash!

Perhaps my lucky break has come.
No lecture from my spouse.
No Cheshire grin nor nagging din - 
I'm in the wrong damned house!


Sunday 15 August 2021

On Being North of 50

Where is that reset / reboot button for life?

I am writing this not to bore you with the details of my life although I am sure I will but hopefully to stimulate similar thoughts for you. You should not live in the past but a little reminiscing is just fine.

Which birthday did you revere or resent the most - or any other birthday? My 10th was apparently a non-event. I recall nothing about it.

For most kids I suspect - certainly for me - one was my 13th. Becoming a teenager was a big one. Teenagers were always the "older" kids. It meant that in the summer I could attend teenage dances at our cottage. The problem was that most kids in my class were 1-2 years older than me. So when my time came, it was a "been there - done that" for any friends.

At 16 I could drive and I did. At 18 I could enter a pool hall and go to the USA to drink (from Canada), and for me it was my introduction to sex. Perhaps that alone makes it one of the biggest. It is also the age of majority in Ontario, but I did not feel like an adult yet. I should note thankfully that I was not conscripted and sent off to war either.

20th just meant in one more year I would be 21. In my case I also graduated from university at 21 and drank 21+1 draft beers without losing my cookies! Back then they were much bigger glasses, and cost a wopping 25 cents. It was a contest and I passed it. My best friend failed 9 months earlier.

My biggie was becoming 21. Then I could legally drink and buy alcohol. I had already become an adult but somehow this one meant I was not a kid anymore - no excuses.

Thirty seemed like a big one - it always does. Before that however, from 21 to 30 I led the life of an overactive but often lonely bachelor. It happened to be the year I met my partner and we have been together ever since. Mostly I recall attending her brother in law's 50th birthday and thinking: "Wow - he is old. Some day I will get there!" So he was twenty years my senior. Now my 50th was over twenty-five years ago - scary.

Forty was another biggie but somehow not as big as thirty. People often buy you a forty ouncer of booze. We had already moved into a house and that has occupied most of my spare time since.

As already mentioned, the big "50" for someone else was the one when I recalled thinking: "Wow - he is old. Some day I will get there!" My partner arranged a secret surprise birthday and had gone through many of my files (not good) to find names of people she really didn't know. I was astonished when I had parked the car and walked into this banquet hall - she really pulled it off well. She had me thinking it was to be just family. I was astonished. In the pictures, to me I still didn't "look" 50 but maybe my view is somewhat slanted!

And that brings me to 60 and 70. Somehow these were two more non-events - just indications that indeed time marches on at an amazing pace. My next 10th will be 80 and yes, that one is a biggie. For most men their horizon after that is questionable. Supposedly they don't live as long as women but I always said that was voluntary on our part!

My mom lived to be 100 and my dad almost 83. I hope I have her life genes.

Now in retirement I look back. That is what this post is all about. There are so many things I wished I had done differently. Perhaps one sign of a successful life is that  you would not have changed anything. That does not say much about mine.

Just had a silly thought: I always joked that I wish there were a reset / reboot button for life. One accepted symbol is now the circle with a vertical stroke from its centre to 12:00 (see below). Kind of resembles a navel - a useless part of the body after birth.

There you go. Perhaps the navel was supposed to have been our reset button - only to be used once. This was way before Steve Jobs. He never would have had a button - even a belly button. OK. How many of you are looking at yours? Don't bother. It doesn't work!


Friday 13 August 2021

Did You Keep Score When You Were Young?

3 Lies you can count on: Age; Golf score; Number of Partners

Of the 3 lies in the title, the 3rd is the topic of this post.

Do you know how many partners you had (the "got lucky" ones) before you were married - or after - or still if you never tied the knot? 

This post was triggered by some reading about the great Wilt the Stilt Chamberlain (basketball) who claimed he slept with 20,000 women during his career. That is a different woman every day for 55 years. Credible? I don't think so. Many attribute over 3,000 to Julio Iglesias. That is every night for eight years. Perhaps that was possible over his entire career. Elvis probably was way up there as well.

Long ago for the very religious it was supposed to be none. I'm not very religious! For bachelors it is the opposite of a golf score. The dishonest add to their score unlike golf where they shave numbers from their score. Do women? I'm not sure. Maybe they discuss their past lovers with friends but the double standard has always applied - if they brag about too many partners they are called nasty names.

I was the worst of all combinations - a late starter and then a long time bachelor who tried to make up for lost time. I'm pretty certain of the number but will keep that to myself. I seldom went all the way just to carve another notch in the bedpost. Things just happened but I have to admit I spent a lot of time looking for the opportunity. 
 For me, "No" always meant no long before it became a catch phrase.

The tragic thing back then was that this cost me the one young woman who was probably my perfect match. Details have to remain secret. I will never forget her and wonder if she forgot me. In hindsight, marriage would have been a better option for me long ago in my early twenties but I stupidly let her get away. On the bright side I never would have met my current partner had I asked the one who seemed perfect for me back then, but I spent a lot of years feeling sorry for myself before meeting my lady.

I don't recall a female celebrity boasting about any specific number at all. That says a lot about the differences between men and women. There are those who went through many marriages but the press made bragging unnecessary.

I still remember my first partner - what a disaster - for her anyway - front seat of a '63 Pontiac. I highly recommend the back seat as a better choice. A lot of time passed before the second. I seem to have been attracted to more virtuous girls or women. Just like Clinton - "never had sexual relations with that woman" - the build-up and surrounding activities but not the real deal.

It was only after university that I realized what I had been missing. I blame what friends I had - most of them got married! I would re-visit old mates to go for a drink but their wives were never happy about it.

So can you remember your history - in sequence? What about names and how you met? How you broke up? Are you really honest with yourselves about who gave the elbow and who received it?

Do you even think about this topic? I bet you do.


Wednesday 11 August 2021

Best Vaccination: Laugh at Yourself!


Where did all the girls go?

After turning twenty one,

I bought a brand new car.

A sports job with a five speed box,

And glances from afar.

No Triumph, Sprite, or MGB

Too commonplace you see.

I found the Fiat 1-2-4

Sport Spyder was for me!

At every light some one would say

"I really like your car!"

Positano Yellow you could 

Spot it from afar.

For girls it was a magnet.

How could I ask for more?

On sunny days with soft top down

It even would seat four.

Although those days were long ago.

They seem like yesterday.

I wonder if I had one now

Would I still feel that way?

My other half still harbors the

Convertible allure.

With modern folding hard tops they're

Much better that's for sure.

She loved the new Miata so

I bought one as a gift.

With automatic I still miss

My rapid five speed shift.

For sure this Mazda goes Zoom Zoom, 

But I don't feel as free..

It's bumpy, noisy, small and so

I always bang my knee.

Getting in is difficult

But with the sun o'er head,

I think about the beach and of 

The care free life I led.

If I Zoomed by you today

You might have heard me shout.

"Please call 9-1-1 for me -

You see I can't get out!"