The inspiration for this wee screed came about due to the Facebook campaign being mounted to save the TV drama Harry’s Law. HL, despite the fact it’s an excellent series, and an immensely popular once, beautifully acted by a stellar cast, and kind of a Boston Legal lite was cancelled by the weasels that make such decisions due to the fact it was only popular with the ‘wrong’ demographic. Old buggers are the wrong demographic because they don’t buy much stuff and advertisers want the callow elements of society who can be sucked into anything. I support this campaign because my wife and I loved the series.
You see, societal negativity is generally most profoundly felt by those badly impacted. Consequently, no matter how liberal you might think you are if you are a regular Anglo-Saxon sort of European extraction, you cannot understand racism in the same way as somebody in a minority.
Sexism is truly only appreciated and abhorred by females walking past a construction sight, expositing decent service in the marketplace, having a quiet solo drink somewhere, or working in an office with an apparent glass-ceiling and a horndog male boss. Sorry guys, no matter how ‘Alan Alda-ish’ you see yourself as being, you cannot really go there.
You are sexually straight and you can attend 10,000 ‘Pride’ parades just to show how tolerant you are, but you cannot really empathize with the homophobic insults a gay male or lesbian has to contend with every day.
And now, and as much as I detest admitting it, I have lately found myself being conscious of the rampant ‘ageism’ that is accepted by society. That, therefore, must mean that I am, if not there, as in ‘old’, I’m getting towards the cusp. A decade ago I didn’t notice. Now I do more and more all the time, and frankly it pisses me off. Not the fact that I’m getting older, but the fact that it seems acceptable to deride me.
Yet, I know there are the ‘signs’ within me. Unfortunately, some of them verge into the TMI realm. OK, suck it up. You’ll have to face it too. Things change. They do it slowly, but the bastards creep up on a body. You look in the mirror and think “not bad, really”. You delude yourself in thinking that you’d be taken for a decade younger. Then you catch your image in a store window on passing and think, “Who is that geezer passing by?” Nooo, that can’t be me. I don’t feel older.
My wife is 13 years younger than I am, so I console myself by assuming I am her contemporary and hope everybody else thinks that, too.
I started wearing reading glasses at 40. The less said about my teeth the better. I stand before the commode at 3 am waiting for the flow to begin. And waiting, and waiting, and waiting, and I turn on the faucet hoping for some power of water-borne suggestion. Eventually there is lift-off.
On the other hand, I have a morning coffee and I’m kinda like those ladies who depend on their, well, Depends to keep themselves pristine in the knicker department. No time to spare at those moments. OK, I warned you about TMI.
Thank God some of the other TMI stuff still seems to tick over.
But, what I really do notice is the massive increase in advertising of products and nostrums for the aforementioned incontinence, arthritis, various other forms of aches and pains, alzheimer’s symptoms, and so forth.
I also notice how ‘seniors’ (that euphemism for old farts) are often mocked in commercials and on popular presentations in the media. I love the creativity behind The Simpsons, but am increasingly less amused by the depiction of old Abe Simpson or the other denizens of the old folks home in which he resides.
Yes, Abe may be old, but Jeopardy’s Alex Trebek is considerably older than I am and nobody would mistake him for a geezer. “What are good genes, Alex?”
I am grateful for all those elements within that remain in good working order. I am grateful that my two legs still propel me with ease. I am grateful that my mind and creativity still seem in decent working order. I am grateful that I remember most stuff I need to. I am grateful that I can still be a warm and loving partner – though maybe not quite so rapidly. They say that’s better.
So, don’t be telling me I’m a menace on the road just because of my demographics, but at the same time, thank you for letting me use that seniors’ card. I like getting cheaper stuff.
I’ve earned it.
Now just tell me how wonderful, handsome and virile I look and we’ll be square. Is that too much to ask? Really, my ego is still in good working order.
Oh, and bring back Harry’s Law, you bastards.