Pickles isn’t ready to declare senior status either
“I wouldn’t join any club that would have me as a member” – Groucho Marx
It’s official – I’m a senior; that is, if receiving an invitation to join AARP qualifies you as such.
The invitation came on a Saturday morning with no fanfare – well ahead of my 50th birthday. While that milestone is perceived by many to be the obligatory ringing in of senior status, the AARP card is more symbolic of it to me. Discounts on hotels, restaurants, and travel seem more significant than a big 50 party.
It’s a bittersweet benchmark. On the one hand, I’m wiser now. I have an acceptance of things that I used to resist, like listening to my wife and putting away laundry. I feel that every day I’m a little better than the last. I’ve put in the 10,000 hours that is deemed necessary to become an expert in your field. Peace of mind is now the daily goal.
But on the other hand, I have less time in front of me than behind, and the proverbial time passage has sped up along the way. Death of friends and loved ones is more common place, and I can’t keep up with the 20-somethings at the gym anymore. Getting up to pee in the middle of the night and finding hair in the bottom of the shower are common occurrences.
Perhaps that is why time is called the evil beloved. On the one hand, without it we wouldn’t have any motivation to get things done. But on the other hand, we know our time is short and ticking away. It’s as if time has both sped up and slowed down at the same time. I savor more but the days go by quicker.
But since I’m never going to retire and 50 is the new 30, I’ve decided that I’m not going to join AARP just yet. I’m just not ready to acknowledge my age in years. Until they change the name to the American Association of Wiser People, I’ll pay full price for my hotel, or at least until the financial planner in me decides that the discount is worth the admission of age.
“If you’re not getting older, you’re dead” – Tom Petty