Wisdom found in words of othersA friend who reads this column asked me why I often use quotes.
By: Bernie Hughes, Superior Telegram
A friend who reads this column asked me why I often use quotes. Isn’t that the easy way? In a sense, he is correct. Often I use the quotes because I believe the person quoted said it better. “Well”, he said, “You are certainly old enough now; why don’t you speak for yourself more?”
He is right again, I’ll be 90 years old my next birthday so I’ll at least begin today’s column by saying, personally, what I find is different about aging I’ll mention some things about aging as I remember them from my younger days
• Less concern about the future. The here and now was my main concern.
• Sleep tonight? I can sleep any time. If there is something to do, let’s do it.
• Make a list? Why bother? I can remember those few items.
• Why are you guys poking along? Let’s get a move on.
• We have things to do. Let’s get with the program.
How would I sum up the differences from younger years?
I think the younger Bernie Hughes had lighter blood, was quicker witted and was more cheeky and carefree. Those were the days, my friends, and because I knew they would have to end, I was much less likely to linger and dillydally.
There are a few differences that I’ve noted myself and have heard other aging folks explain some very simple physical differences:
Buttoning clothing, especially the shirt collar, requires more attention. I can remember when this was completely automatic. It was done while making other moves. Now it takes a bit more time and concentration because those fingers move slower, awkwardly and often require some redoing.
Tasks that require knees to bend take longer and are often accompanied by discomfort. I used to drop down with no problem on my knees and get up almost as easily. Now it can be in tight quarters and especially when there is nothing nearby enough to get help from my hands and arms.
And to conclude, once again, to quote some folks who I think explained old age better:
“How old would you be if you didn’t know hold old you was?” Satchel Paige, the black baseball pitcher, asked.
“At age 20, we worried about what others think of us. At age 40, we don’t care what others think of us. At age 60, we discover they haven’t been thinking of us at all,” said advice columnist Ann Landers.
“We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing,” said George Bernard Shaw, an English writer.
“As soon as you feel too old to do something; do it,” Margaret Deland said.
“Damnation of the young is a necessary part of the hygiene of older people and greatly assists the circulation of the blood,” Logan Pearsall said.
Bernie Hughes, Ed.D, is a retired educator who resides in Superior. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.