I just turned 42 last month. Talking about being in your fourties, I think Louis CK said it best. Of course, I’m paraphrasing here: When you are 40(42 is in the same yacht) you’re old. You’re half dead. But you’re not old enough for anyone to give a crap that you’re old. Nobody spends their holiday delivering hot meals to 40 year olds. But you’re not young enough for anyone to be proud of anything you accomplish.
I’m old, but only according to my age, and according to my falling apart body. I am 8 year old trapped in an 81 year old body, trapped in an actual body that is 42. So there are a lot of things that suck about being my age. But being 81, now that is a bitterman’s dream. You know how they say youth is wasted on the young? Well, I say oldness is wasted on the old. Let me tell you why.
I will be tormenting young people – Young people think they are so awesome with their fancy cell phones and their super hip latest technology and their super cool slang that only they understand, but you know what they don’t have? All the free time in the world. They have school and a part time job and the future to worry about. And angst. All kinds of angst. Not me. You know what I have? Time to prank call them, and passively aggressively tell them how they have things to worry about.
I will be the best bitter old guy on the block – I’ll be the one that has the lawn that the kids will fear getting on. Clint Eastwood in Gran Turino won’t have anything on me. I will be the legendary house that no kid will want to Trick or Treat at, the one kids will cross the street to avoid, and the creepily maintained one that they will think was the basis for all haunted houses.
Memory loss – I will turn that superpower on and off whenever I please. If asked to bring a lasagna to a gathering, what lasagna? When it comes to my birthday, my memory will be clear as a bell, but if a card with money birthday comes along, whoops I forgot. The IRS comes asking for money, or if a wallet of someone’s accidentally gets lifted from someone’s back pocket? Sorry, I had no idea I was doing it.
Getting things carried for you – Yes, I’m fully capable of carrying a bag of groceries, but you won’t know that. Mysterious back ailments will happen, knees problems can happen suddenly at any time, and what were we talking about again?
Any time of the day is play time – Don’t feel like going to bed until midnight? Feel like sleeping at 2 pm? Want to go to the grocery store at 2 am to torment the night stocker and make him have to ring you up? Just do it. Wanna call your son at his stressful job during the busiest time of the day? “Hey son, I was just wondering…When you knock on watermelons are they supposed to be hollow sounding or full?” Need to cross the street during rush hour? Take your time.
I will revise history – Thankfully, not many people are very good at history or the accuracy of it. I will be making up stories like I was Forrest Gump. Yeah, I was working for NASA during the moon landing (even though I wasn’t alive), yeah I worked at Microsoft when they first started, yes I used to play on the same basketball team as Micheal Jordan and actually taught him some moves. What are people going to do, fact check?
I will taunt my kids/grandkids with money – I will hint about money. I will talk about stocks I had way back when in Microsoft(see previous) and Apple, talk about a baseball collection with Babe Ruth, a coin collection of some buffalo nickels, talk about some bonds I had as a kid that “is somewhere around here”.
Some people look forward to retiring so they can travel the world or spend more time with their family. When I retire, I dream of being the bitterest old man alive. Yeah, pizza will probably prevent me from making it that fat, but a bitterman can dream. And be assured, if I day make it that day, I’ll be posting all about it with my old man fingers.
ARRRRRGG – cough, splutter, HHHHH,
Bitter Old Man Ben