Afternoons and Coffeespoons

“Some day I’ll have a disappearing hairline,
Some day I’ll wear pyjamas in the daytime”

Ageing is not a topic usually broached by youth-obsessed rock musicians, but Crash Tests Dummies did in the song quoted here, and which gave its title to this post. Another which springs to mind, although of an altogether different tone, is They Might Be Giants’ “I Hope I Get Old Before I Die”. And maybe Simon and Garfunkel’s “Bookends”, although that’s not really rock, is it? And how many films deal with old age with any seriousness, rather than as an excuse for lame comedy?

I’ve always been convinced that I’ll live to quite a ripe old age, maybe because a lot of the time I feel like a bit of an old geezer (happy to sit at home with a good book, a cup of cocoa and a pair of warm slippers; not keen on smoky bars filled with shouty people and loud music; irritated by all the latest fashions), and the only thing that bothers me about it is the possible (inevitable…) health deterioration. If you’ve ever wondered what old age physically feels like, you could try the “age suit” simulator.

“I’ve watched the summer evenings pass by,
I’ve heard the rattle in my bronchi”

There are some people in whose faces you can see the child that they were decades before (any not just because they’re “baby-faced”). Conversely, there are some people whose faces you can quite easily imagine as elderly, despite the fact that they’re still quite young. I know a boy the same age as who already looks like his middle aged father. It’s an interesting experiment to imagine someone at a different age, epsecially trying to see some doddery old lady or wrinkly old man as young, spry, full of beans and sex drive. Imagine your boss as a toddler, wetting his shorts, or your bank manager as a gurgling newborn. We’ve all been there…


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