Wednesday, April 30, 2014

A Prayer For The Aging

While waiting to get a new tire put on my bike the other week I grabbed a magazine about riding that had this guy on the cover.  He is country singer David Allen Coe and has had a long career.  I noticed that he no longer has his hair so he wears a wig the same color he used 40 years ago. 

Once upon a time, Mr. Coe was a handsome man. And I suppose he was successful with his music.  I don't follow country music so I'm not sure if he was "big" or not, but he did have a famous writing credit with "Take This Job and Shove It", sung by Johnny Paycheck. 

It seems, however, that Mr. Coe has not adapted to his age.  At 75, most guys don't have flowing golden colored locks,  but do have the noticeable hearing aids.  

Maybe there simply comes a time at which you should begin to age gracefully.  Be as mischievous as you want; be hell-bent on eccentricity, but for God's sake, don't look foolish.    

Grant me wisdom to know when I'm done, 
When I can walk, but no longer run.
And gently nudge me toward the Light,
When I've lost all my sight. 

Getting older means you creak 
And occasionally leak, 
Nothing wrong with being riper,
so cinch up your diaper.

Give me knowledge and sageness
For the young and the ageless.
Give me wisdom to know as I grow older:
 put in my teeth and end the comb-over.

Let me smile with pride
And try not to hide, 
That I've made it this far,
It's has been a Hell of a ride. 

On second thought, think, 
When my synapses are in the pink,
Perhaps it's best to test the grids, 
And do something wild to embarrass the kids.

Maybe Old David, here, has it right
Throw on the wig and look like a fright,
Charge down the hill like you used to charge Up, 
Through the wrinkles and drooling, pretend you're a pup.

I've always thought that I didn't want to embarrass myself when I die.  Although, heck, it's my death, I suppose I can do it any way I want, huh?  But maybe I should focus instead on the embarrassment of aging.  David here, is still out there rocking or country-ing, whatever he does, and that's all good.  He dons his golden-locked wig, shoves in his ear pieces, and sits on stage and entertains people.  That's all good, too.  Very good.  So what if his wig and his gray beard don't exactly match?  You've got to hand it to anyone past retirement age if they are out there doing their thing, impervious to the rules, blind to the conventions; and not molting in front of a TV set watching reruns of Gunsmoke.

Nope!  Do not age gracefully.  Fight the fight, don the wig, make tongues wag.  Do it all and then keep doing more.    Meat Loaf says at the end of his concerts, "Don't ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, stop rockin'!  Good advise.  I hope to embarrass my kids with my aging.  Now that's a legacy!

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