My Witt's End

Who Says We're Getting Older?


I’ve concluded that searching for the fountain of youth is a waste of time and money. Drinking water from fountains, especially if they have a sign advertising “potable water” in places you’re not really familiar with usually leads to something less than feelings of youth.

Instead, I’ve decided to pay attention to how old(er) people act and what they say. Especially if they don’t think you care--or hear. This would eliminate all the advice that old(er) people are wont to give, especially if you appear to be a year or two their junior and give them the least bit of notice.

My grandpa, for instance, used to say, “Getting old ain’t for sissies.” He’d then give you a litany of reasons why.

I recently stopped at a Culver’s restaurant in Indiana. Not only was I hungry, but this is a chain that has yet (to my knowledge) to migrate into Ohio, so I thought something different might be in the offing. All reports are that they have great burgers.

While I was working on my double-butter-and-bacon burger (cholesterol be damned, full speed ahead) an elderly couple worked their way to the area near my table. He, banging his cane against unsuspecting diners, she, grabbing the back of every chair she passed, empty or occupied, much to the chagrin of the chair's occupant.

They washed up next to me and their conversation went something like this:

Him: Table or booth?

Her: eh?

Him: (With an increase in volume.) I said, Table or booth?

Her: Booth.

Him: Table. (He sits at the table.) Booths are not good for fat people.

Her: eh?

Him: (More volume.) I said, Booths are not good for fat people.

Her: I know. Booths are more romantic.

Him: I thought you gave that up.

Her: eh?

Him: (So that most people in the restaurant could hear.) I said, I thought you gave that up.

Her: I know you can't get it up. That’s why you take that pill.

Now there are a whole bunch of life-lessons to be had in this little scenario. The end of which, by the way, was a strange arrangement of him at the table and her in the booth, sharing their meals, talking across the aisle. I had the distinct feeling this might have been a repeat performance. It seemed well rehearsed.


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