Sunday, July 29, 2007

How to Age Well

A hell of a lot has been said about "you're only as old as you feel" -- and I'm a firm believer in this.

My father was 24 years older than my mother.

As a kid, I loved it! I used to wow my friends with lines like "My grandpa is 3 years younger than my dad!" As a teen, I loved his quiet sense of humour and his respect for words. We used to watch M.A.S.H. together and Bugs Bunny on Saturday mornings.

He and Mom had a brilliant relationship. They'd met when she was in her late 20s, in a small Ontario town, and the rest, as they say, was history.

My dad got his first pacemaker when he was 50, the year I was born. So he didn't expect to see my sister and I finish high school...but instead, he lived until my sister and I were in our 30s, saw me through university, and met and knew his three grandchildren very well.

The best thing about my dad was his attitude about life -- he did not get old until about a couple of years before he died. Everyone who knew him felt young too.

One of his best friends was 50 when Dad died, and I thought he was truly hot. So, in my one experiment with online dating, I thought nothing of going out to meet a 48-year-old man for a cup of coffee. But man, was he old!! That's when I realized that age is in your head.

I had a student from Korea once who irritated me to no end. He was 30, and actually said, in class, that he was old. He went on and on about it -- I was infuriated. How happy can that guy's life be? What had happened in his life to make him feel old at such an early age?

My mom is young. She's turning 70 this week, but doesn't act it, or look it. She's just booked her tickets to Kenya and Ethiopia for the fall, and she was in India the year before. She travels to California every year, and goes to Europe every second year.

My sisters in-laws are a couple of years younger than our mom, but they refer to Mom as "the young grandma" and they are old.

Did I mention that she's now traveling with her friend, a very funny man who is 10 years her junior? They're definitely more than friends -- they spend a lot of time together. He makes her laugh, and they seem very happy hanging out together.

In this week, when both my mom and her friend are celebrating their birthdays, I would like everyone to celebrate your own life, and remember that you are only as old as you want to be.


Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Improve your life (Warning: Low on Absurd Scale!)

I was browsing my Netvibes GTD blog feed this morning (see Az, I really do use it at home!), and I found a really thoughtful post from over at on 10 Virtually instant ways to improve your life -- every single point was something everyone needs to have tattooed to the back of their hand to remember (figuratively speaking, of course).

For example:
Don’t invent rules. A huge proportion of those “oughts” and “shoulds” that you carry around are most likely needless. All that they do for you is make you feel nervous or guilty. What’s the point? When you use these imaginary rules on yourself, you clog your mind with petty restrictions and childish orders. And when you try to impose them on others, you make yourself into a bully, a boring nag, or a self-righteous bigot.
Now, I do have life rules, but they are lessons learned rules, so I think they're okay.

Rule #1
"Always wear comfortable shoes."

Rule #2
"Never live with your best friend."
[Corollary to Rule #2: "Live with someone who can be your best friend."]

There really are only 2 rules, but I'll jokingly add them as they come up. Like, Rule #23 (in the Travel subset of rules) "Always use the bathroom when you get a chance."

Any to add?


Monday, July 09, 2007

The All-New Definition of "Friend"

In the paper the other day (proof positive that not only has Facebook has become mainstream, but that I'm seriously behind the times!):

Even my cats have friends on FB! It's a weird, no stress kinda way of keeping in touch, at a distance, with people. Some you want, others you're not quite sure: "Why is this person asking to be my friend on FB? S/he and I wrote each other off years ago!"

Is it new-found maturity (on whose part?), or just I've-gotta-have-more-friends-on-my-profile syndrome?

Ah well. I'll keep going, mostly because I enjoy the long-distance Scrabble games I've got going!


Friday, July 06, 2007

You'd think...

...that having regular hours in one's life would create more time for things like blogging.

But no.

I apologize for being so distant lately. I'll get more into a rhythm with the new job and write more often soon.