Wisdom Or Just Wrinkles?

I have a birthday coming up. I don’t feel that old, but when I was a teenager, the people who were the age that I am now seemed really old. I’m not going to say how old I’m turning, but let’s just say I know who Leif Garrett and the Bay City Rollers are. The last time I reached a milestone birthday, I didn’t think it would bother me. Then on the actual day, I was so inexplicably sick that I couldn’t go to work. This time, I’m going to prepare myself ­- first by writing an article about it, then by going to Vegas.I’m not happy about the reality that I can no longer call the lines on my face “fine”; I need to workout twice as hard to see the same results; the boys at Safeway don’t trip over themselves to help me find an item anymore; I never get asked for ID; I have to check the older age category box on survey forms; and I actually had to say to my friend when we were shopping the other day, “That’s cute, but it’s too young for me to wear”.

I am disgruntled with the aging process, but I read the quote, “Do not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many”, and I decided that I should be happy that at least I know some stuff that I didn’t know when I was twenty. Here are some of the most useful things I’ve learned in no particular order:

1) When a cop tells you to do something, just do it.

2) Divorce is expensive.

3) Have kids when you’re still young. You’ll be too tired when you’re old.

4) Travel when you’re young. You’ll be too tired when you’re old.

5) If food doesn’t come from an animal, from a tree, or from the dirt, it will eventually make you sick.

6) Time flies. Don’t waste it.

7) The invincible feeling you have as a teenager wears off, so take advantage of it while you’re still too stupid to know any better.

8) Be spontaneous. The only things I regret are the opportunities that I didn’t seize.

9) Classic literature and world history both become interesting when you’re old.

10) Everything happens for a reason; we just don’t always know what the reason is.

11) Listen to your gut instinct; it knows what it’s doing.

12) Don’t keep getting tripped up by something that’s behind you.

13) The crankiest people you will ever meet are that way because they’re in pain.

14) The best and the worst things that will ever happen to you will occur randomly on an otherwise ordinary day.

15) The only thing you should bother trying to control is your ability to relax because nothing else is really within your control anyways.

16) Give drivers with a big green N in their back window a wide berth.

17) Being an innovator means being misunderstood and discouraged until everyone else catches up.

18) The only people who can be helped are the ones who want to be helped.

19) The difference between an amateur and a professional is that the professional didn’t give up when things got hard.

20) People who are big talkers about all their good intentions look exactly like the people who are doing nothing.

21) Only certain people can pull off a tattoo.

22) Loving someone the way you like to give love is not the same as loving someone the way they like to be loved.

23) Placebos work.

24) The people who have your back when the going gets tough are not always the people you thought were your friends.

25) Nature is the most important resource we have.

26) Disagreeing can be another word for learning if you listen and keep an open mind.

27) The articles I write that I think everyone will hate are the ones that I get the most compliments on.

28) The laws of physics apply.

29) Rejection is just another way of saying that two things are not a good match. Don’t take it personally.

30) If you make people feel good about themselves, they will want to be around you.

31) Middle-aged men wearing jeans and riding around in the middle of the day on a ten-speed are often up to no good.

32) Nobody reads my tweets.

34) Just because you can’t see something doesn’t mean it’s not there.

35) Doubling on someone’s handlebars is a bad idea, as is jumping off a moving horse, and jumping into a pool when you don’t know how to swim.

36) Two things you shouldn’t cheap-out on are your shoes and electrical cords.

37) Not all hairdressers know how to cut curly hair.

38) Just when I think I’ve got things figured out, I learn something new and realize how little I know.

I’m sure I forgot some good ones. That’s another downside to aging – my memory is shot. I’ll write another list when I’m eighty and see what I’ve learned by then, if I can remember.


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