How Old Is Grandpa?

One evening a grandson was talking to his Grandfather about current events. 

The grandson asked his Grandfather what he thought about the shootings at schools, the computer age, and just things in general.

The Grandfather replied, “Well, let me think a minute; I was born before: television, penicillin, polio shots, frozen foods, xerox, contact lenses, frisbees and the pill.

There were no: credit cards, laser beams or ball-point pens.

Man had not invented: pantyhose, air conditioners, dishwashers, and clothes dryers, and the clothes were hung out to dry in the fresh air, and space travel was only in Flash Gordon books.

Your Grandmother and I got married first… and then lived together. 

Every family had a father and a mother. 

Until I was 25, I called every woman older than me “mam.” And after I turned 25, I still called policemen and every man by the title “Sir.” 

We were before gay rights, computer dating, dual careers, daycare centers, and group therapy. 

The Bible, good judgment, and common sense governed our lives.

We were taught to know the difference between right and wrong and to stand up and take responsibility for our actions. 

Serving your country was a privilege; living in this country was a bigger privilege.

We thought fast food was eating half a biscuit while running to catch the school bus. 

Having a meaningful relationship meant getting along with your cousins. 

Draft dodgers were those who closed front doors as the evening breeze started.

Time-sharing meant time the family spent together in the evenings and weekends-not purchasing condominiums.

We never heard of FM radios, tape decks, CDs, electric typewriters, yogurt, or guys wearing earrings. Instead, we listened to Big Bands, Jack Benny, and the President’s speeches on our radios.

And I don’t ever remember any kid blowing his brains out listening to Tommy Dorsey. 

If you saw anything with ‘Made in Japan’ on it, it was junk. 

The term ‘making out’ referred to how you did on your school exam…until TC

Pizza Hut, McDonald’s, and instant coffee were unheard of. We had 5 &10-cent stores where you could actually buy things for 5 and 10 cents. Ice cream cones, phone calls, rides on a bus, and a Pepsi were all a nickel. And if you didn’t want to splurge, you could spend your nickel on enough stamps to mail one letter and two postcards. 

You could buy a new Ford Coupe for $600, but who could afford one? Too bad because gas was 11 cents a gallon.

In my day: “grass” was mowed, “coke” was a cold drink, “pot” was something your mother cooked in, and “rock music” was your grandmother’s lullaby. “Aids” were helpers in the principal’s office, “chip” meant a piece of wood, “hardware” was found in a hardware store and “software” wasn’t even a word.

And we were the last generation to believe that a lady needed a husband to have a baby.

How old do you think I am?  For the above situation, I would be older than 76 (in 2022). Is that ‘old’ or ‘elderly’? The use of technology and a sense of responsibility are now factors that significantly impact whether others see you as old.

  • If your email address ends in roadrunner, you are showing your age.
  • If texting someone a simple message takes you longer than two seconds, you may be considered old.
  • If you need your ten-year-old neighbor to turn on your TV — or, let’s be honest, to tell you Netflix is where it’s at — it’s a sign you are aging.
  • If you have no idea what an emoji or a meme is, or if you can’t understand the joke when someone shares one with you, you may be getting old.
  • You’re likely growing old if your vacations happen onboard cruise ships rather than volunteering to gather plastic waste to save the ocean.
  • You might be old if you’re still hard at work with retirement looming closely and completely baffled by the 20-something co-worker who just quit to find their purpose.

Ok, I am 83 and still getting around, and I can relate to technology being a bit frustrating.

The purpose of this is to say to youngsters-get on with life and stop feeling sorry for yourself. It is not about you.

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