Sunday, February 16, 2014

Needed: Good Geezer Models

I've been thinking about that middle-age thing that happens to many of us. I mean, what is a “midlife crisis” and what does it mean? To me it is a time of examination: of what we thought we wanted waaaay back when compared to what we have now, of the choices we made and the wondering if it is too late to take the risk to reach out for the brass ring, of aging and changing and loss - loss of abilities, loss of friends, of the life we think we have.

Well I think there is not much we can do if we are going to have a midlife crisis. It either is or it isn’t (and all that in between). I think more importantly to us at this age is this:

we need good geezer models

I mean - well think about it. Aging has had a bad rap in our society all these years - especially for women. (Men become “distinguished;” women become “crones.”) Growing old has been a bad joke - the majority of characters on television or in the movies are young.....and the older people tend to be cranky or selfish or lonely or spoofs - lots of old crackpots in the media. And here all we are - we baby-boomers (the generation who refuses to believe they are actually “aging” - peace brother *flashing the peace sign*) have set the pace for sooooo long.....refusing to bend to the masses and expected norms......and what? Now we have to also create our own geezer models?

I think not.

Some of us have been searching for good geezer models for awhile. I look for them at airports, at the grocery, at the movies, and at family gatherings. I am having a difficult time here. At the airport I tend to find those “distinguished gents” with barrel bellies, wearing plaid polyester pants and have on baseball caps with sayings like, “Gone Fishing!” And the women....well those “old crones” seem to have dyed fluffy hair, glasses which peak at the eyebrows, and shopping bags full of things like tissues and grandchildren souvenirs (t-shirts with sayings like, “Gramma went to Las Vegas and all I got was this t-shirt”) and the barrel-bellied husband’s pills....and they nag one another about what they left on the plane or “Now Norman, you know you always get the directions wrong” and stuff like that. Not really inspiring, eh?

What is the criteria for a good geezer model? Growing older with dignity and grace.....accepting life is as it is and not something else....accepting others as they are and not someone else......not constantly discussing their ailments (I mean I am glad they had a good bowel movement, but do I need to have that image while I eat?)....wisdom and advice but realizing that taking advice is a choice.....constantly growing and learning.....not giving up nor giving IN.

Not too much to expect from a role model, eh?

Paul Newman was a good geezer is Joanne Woodward....Katherine Hepburn......Jimmy mom is a pretty good geezer model (except for that annoying habit of telling me all about people of whom I have no clue.... their names and details of their lives and searching searching searching for the exact date it happened “Was it Tuesday? No, I think it was Wednesday.....*voice fading* no! *conviction in the voice* It was Monday last month...*slight pause*...or was it the month before?”) *rolling eyes*

Yep. GGM’s are seemingly few and far between. I continue to search. And try to decide if I want my midlife crisis today (I want to be young enough to enjoy that red convertible and those two or three young babes on my arms - what? what?....that is the male version of a midlife crisis?? damn! sex discrimination even in my own crisis?) or perhaps wait a few years until I can afford it (I could live to 135!! It could happen!). Decisions....decisions.

Meanwhile the beat definitely goes on.....peace~~~

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