Geezer Time

Watershed moments: some friends of a certain age bracket recently wrote of the defining moment when that certain inevitable realization arrives that you are no longer the person that you used to be. Not the razor sharp mind. Not the quick, snappy comeback that’s perfect for the occasion. Just the dull, numbing awakening that time is relentless and it has arrived at your home. In fairness to both genders, we’ll open with a male folly followed by a female folly.

His Geezer Time arrived while driving. The sun was bright and he needed his sunglasses. So he and his wife spent approximately ten minutes fruitlessly searching for his missing tints. He thought that they were in the car, but after so much time and in such a limited space, he must have been wrong.  But alas, one of them finally found the lost spectacles – perched on his head.

Our female contestant also had her moment arrive with glasses. She was in a store attempting to read a label, but having forgotten her reading glasses, she grabbed a pair from a display for a quick look/see. Store glasses have a fairly large tag in the middle of them that must be moved out of your vision in order to use them, which she did, flipping the movable label up to the middle of her forehead. Having read the label in question, she continued to shop, ultimately stopping at the cashier’s desk to pay for what she bought.

On her way out the door, the beepers and buzzers started screaming alerting store personnel that something was leaving the premises on a five-finger discount. She turned, looked at the clerk and asked if there was a problem. The clerk said, You’re fine. Go on. You’re fine. After putting her packages away in the car, she looked into the mirror to check her makeup when, Ta-da! There they were, a freshly heisted pair of reading glasses with the 3×3 cardboard sticker smashed against the middle of her forehead. Mortified, she dashed back into the store to return them. After a brief explanation to the clerk who had never noticed there was problem (You’re fine. Go on. You’re fine.), even with screaming beepers and buzzers, our accidental shoplifter placed the glasses back where she found them – pronto!

Which brings us to all of those nasty little signs that Geezerville is quickly approaching, although you might have already arrived without knowing it? Like those polite invitations from AARP.  They say you cannot be a member until you’ve turned 50, so then why do they bombard you with invitations beginning years in advance. Or how about the fact that you find TV commercials for various ailments interesting and worth examining, even though it wasn’t that long ago that you never even knew some of the physical ailments even existed.

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But wait! The road to Geezer Haven is not limited to those ancient 50+ dweebs. A class of unnamed college students, appropriately dressed as uninformed college students, visited a place of business to be introduced to the rest of their lives. These early twenty-something types glared at the worker-bee employees, each dressed for battle in suits, starched shirts, tasteful ties, smart dresses and matching shoes. The students began scoffing at the dress and manner of these sell-outs, boldly predicting that they would never be caught dead wearing that stuff. It was brand new day for vision and leadership, and they were the people to lead us all into a brave new world. [Roll end credits and fade up the heroic music.]

Knowingly, the people who were actually working for a living chuckled and pointed at the little mass of big-people wannabe’s. They said: You’ll see; sooner or later you’ll be here too. This just set off the students into a low roar of harrumphs harrumphs. But it didn’t take long. Graduation ultimately arrived, as did life and the need for making a living. Regardless of how many pizzas and beers a person can consume, someone has got to pay for those things. Alas, the first steps towards Geezer Time.

But take heart. Each tick of the clock is yours to do with as you wish. It is your creativity, determination, and perseverance that paints the road towards the final act. If you prefer sitting in an office discussing American Idol for the next 30 years, go for it. Or maybe it is an adventurous long weekend in Las Vegas at a European-style swimming pool; ala topless for women and gaga for men.

Perhaps something somewhere in between is more your flavor of life. Whatever it is, as long as you’re ticking, the unmerciful march towards Geezer Time rides with you every step of the way. Accordingly, it is very important to listen and ponder two great seers who came before us: High expectations are the key to everything. – Sam Walton; and Do or do not. There is no try. – Yoda, Jedi Master. Go. Do. Be.

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