Monday, July 09, 2007

Midlife Crisis

There is a universal truth that I think we all can recognize. Eventually you'll get to a point in your life where you'll look in the mirror and no longer see yourself but see your father/mother. Now this might take longer for some than others, but it will happen. We call this ouch-there-goes-my-hip-ification, or geriatrification for those who like to be more scientific. This is the process of getting old.

For me this process is all to real. The symptoms were subtle at first. It started with the mingling of my memories with things I saw on Justice League cartoons I watched as a kid (for the record superman is a wimp, batman could kick his arse any day). This of course wasn't a horribly telling symptom as most men in their 20s and 30s have this problem, having spent much of their pre-teen years lusting after wonderwoman and imagining they were a radioactively enhanced super hero. Much better than being a viagra enhanced old man.



Following these delusions of grandeur I began experiencing even more frightening symptoms. They're actual part of a spectrum of disease covered by the all encompassing name "back-in-my-day" disease. This disease spectrum starts with the inability to listen to popular music. At first this is passed off as radio stations changing formats, and so elicits very little concern from one's loved ones. In time the stations that reliable played the music you liked as a kid become unbearable to listen to. Your radio presets change to include a mix of talk radio and "classic rock" stations. In its final stages, the patient wholly abandons music and spends much of his/her commute yelling at the partisan hacks on the radio.

Even more frightening is that this shift to talk radio often is accompanied by a political shift. For the vast majority of people they enter the ranks of the zombie drones of conservative demagogues. For others they take their house off the electric grid, increase their composting, and don't wear anything not made of hemp. Personally I'm thinking of taking it to another extreme by joining a commune somewhere in Appalachia.

The second and more troubling part of this disease is the "how can her parents let her dress like that" syndrome. This is where men no longer see women and admire their natural beauty but suddenly and vocally wonder how they can go out in public with an outfit barely suitable for a burlesque house. This syndrome is associated with a phenomenon wherein the patient dismisses most mall based retailers as shops that sell "trashy kid clothes". In its final stages one only shops at places like Eddie Bauer, Macy's, or S&K. This is also known as "selling out to the man-itis", I haven't found a cure for it yet but I'll keep you posted as soon as the latest Men's Warehouse sale is over.

Lastly is the ever crippling technophobia. Here our aging patient suddenly fears anything not produced before 1979. Nostalgia for 8-tracks, vinyl, and the telegraph increases dramatically with this syndrome. Eventually the patient throws out all their dvds and insists that all their family and friends switch to the new high quality beta max system. It's around this time that the family should just put the patient down. Fortunately I have experienced none of these symptoms, unless of course you think my complete apathy about the iPhone is a symptom.

Now that you're educated in the symptoms of geriatrification you too can look at yourself in the mirror and see your parents. It's not all bad after all you do get to...hang on there's some kids on my lawn I've got to go yell at them about their clothes.....

7 comments:

Mr Jo Bloggity said...

My blog keeps me young

Alissa said...

great one.

Ethan's Mom said...

He he. Just glad to still be the hot twenty-something wife of my old-man husband.

But I have to agree that we have pretty much given up on radio. Our ipods bring us all the podcasts we need and all our old music. Hopefully the fact that we choose ipods over radio or even CDs keeps us a little younger.

GK said...

Im sorry to hear your age is catching up with you Stew. Im lucky Im still in my 20s and able to laugh at you old-uns :)

Panini said...

and all this time I've been thinking that my talk radio preferences were just a sign of my depth . . .

Roy @ CNM said...

Ah, Wonder Woman...

Podcasts have replaced radio for the old-but-not-too-old-for-technology crew. A nice ode on aging. And, for the record, iPhone apathy is not an age-based thing; it seems like a pretty useless device. Give me a phone that doesn't accept incoming calls and doesn't come with a signed-in-blood contract and that would be revoutionary...

I'm going to go drink a tall glass of Tang now...

2Coops said...
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