50 signs of aging

The fine blogger Shooting Parrots, from across the pond, did this quiz: “Do you feel like you’re getting old? Take our 50 signs of ageing test to find out.” They – the quiz writer and SP – are from England, so obviously they can’t spell “aging.”

Feeling stiff
Yes – especially the left knee

Groaning when you bend down
Well, no. Not yet, anyway.

Saying: “It wasn’t like that when I was young.”
Occasionally. Usually it was to suggest that Republicans, such as Jacob Javits, Everett Dirksen and William Scranton were quite all right fellows, unlike most of their recent counterparts.

Saying: “In my day.”
No, because I would sound like my maternal grandmother.

Losing hair
Yes, but I’ve been losing it since I was about 18, so it’s hardly a function of getting old.

Not knowing any songs in the top 10
No. This is the advantage of having younger colleagues: I actually own 3 of them the week I checked, two by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, and one by P!nk

Getting hairier ears, eyebrows, nose, face etc
Not that I’ve noticed.

Hating noisy pubs
Yes, but I hated noisy bars when I was in my 20s. Found it too difficult to have conversation.

Talking a lot about joints/ailments
Yes, the aforementioned knee. Plus an elbow.

Forgetting people’s names
Yes, but I’ve been doing that for decades. When I was in New Paltz in 1974, I was backing this Congressional candidate named Matt McHugh. He was GREAT at remembering not only names of people across this wide swath of state (Ithaca to Woodstock, for you upstaters), he remembered details of their lives. “Hi, John, how’s your wife Mary?” or “Hello, Karen. How did your husband Bill’s operation go?” He won and served 18 years in Congress.

Choosing clothes and shoes for comfort rather than style
Yes, but anyone who knows I wear red sneakers often will suss out that 1) I don’t care about style and 2) form over function irritates me. That’s been true for decades.

Thinking policemen/teachers/doctors look young
Yes, especially my daughter’s elementary school teachers, who ARE in their 20s and 30s.

Falling asleep in front of the TV
Seldom, and this was more likely in my 20s than now.

Needing an afternoon nap
Only when I’m ill, or injured.

Finding you have no idea what young people are talking about
Occasionally true, though that was also the case when *I* was a young person.

Struggling to use technology
Sometimes, but that has long been true.

Losing touch with everyday technology such as tablets and televisions
I don’t have a tablet, but I know how the TV works.

You start complaining about things more
Yes, and this I WILL attribute to getting older. Pretty much a “Why not?” It’s also why I have a blog.

Wearing your glasses around your neck
No, because that DOES look old.

Not remembering the names of any modern bands
I know a few, even own a few albums.

You avoid lifting heavy things due to back concerns
Not really.

Complaining about the rubbish on TV these days
Yes, but there IS rubbish on TV.

Misplacing your bag/keys etc
Keys, yes, afraid so, but was true three decades ago.

Switching from Radio 1 to Radio 2
Well, I don’t listen to Top 40 (1), but not much middle-of-the-road stuff (2), either. Probably leave them both off.

You start driving very slowly
The few times I’ve driven, it was slowly.

Preferring a night in with a board game than a night on the town
True for decades.

Taking a keen interest in The Antiques Roadshow
No. The show irritates me with its “maybe I’ll be rich” mentality.

You talk to colleagues who are so young they don’t know what an Opal Fruit is
I had never heard of this.

You start you taking slippers to a friend’s house
Yes, many of my friends like us to take off our shoes when we go to their houses. In the winter, slippers are a great choice.

Listening to The Archers
Not following US soap operas, so I’ll say no.

Falling asleep after a glass of wine
Funny thing about wine and me; it’ll put me to sleep if I drink it in the midday, but not at night. That’s been true since my mid-20s.

Never going out without your coat

Getting bed socks for Christmas and being very grateful
No, though I’ve gotten better in general about getting clothes as gifts than I was when I first got married.

You can’t lose 6lb in two days any more
Never could, except in preparation for a colonoscopy, and it comes right back.

Gasping for a cup of tea
No. (I do not understand the context for this.)

Taking a flask of tea or coffee on a day out

Joining the WI
Don’t know what the US equivalent to this would be.

Taking a keen interest in the garden
No, but I don’t see what the problem with that is. My wife and daughter have a plot in the community garden.

Spending more money on face creams/antiageing products
Zero dollars.

Spending money on the home/furniture rather than a night on the town
True, but it’s an old home, though in fact I’d rather spend it going to a movie or play.

Taking a keen interest in dressing for the weather.
Yes, especially in winter. Once one’s had frostbite – to the feet, when I was 16 – one tries not to repeat it. So I cover well the head, the ears, the hands, the feet.

Putting everyday items in the wrong place
Not yet.

Obsessive gardening or bird feeding

Really enjoying puzzles and crosswords
No, though I used to do crosswords when I was younger.

Always driving in the slow lane or below 70 in the middle lane

Consider going on a ‘no-children’ cruise for a holiday
Actually, when my wife was first pregnant, we went to ‘no children’ resort in Maine.

Your ears are getting bigger
I was told I have tiny ears.

Joining the National Trust
Based on what I’ve read, if I lived there, I probably would. (I have the Beatles’ song ‘Happiness is a Warm Gun’ stuck in my head, specifically the lyric, “The soap impression of his wife Which he ate and donated to the National Trust.”)

Drinking sherry
No, it gives me a headache, and last I checked, did not like the taste.

Feeling you have the right to tell people exactly what you are thinking even if it isn’t polite
Nah, I’m still stuck with that politeness flaw.

So my takeaway from this is that I’m getting old, but was probably old 35 years ago. The only things that are appreciably different from then are the younger teachers and the achier joints.

3 thoughts on “50 signs of aging”

  1. “Start complaining about things more.” My mom said I was born complaining. A compliant child (in more ways than I want to think about, yeeach), but a natural-born bitchfest. It’s why I’m a social justice person, I guess. They say it on here like it’s a BAD thing!!

    I hate sherry. It smells smuglish, like a bad perfume. A


  2. Keith and I talk about aging a lot these days. We’ve adopted the Dead motto: “What a long strange trip it’s been.” Don’t like Antiques Roadshow either. That whole “this is worth something” mentality makes it so much harder to be a junker today.


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