Vanishing future

Route of young men.

I’LL TURN 73 toward the end of summer. This aging thing is quite interesting. I don’t recommend it, but it’s interesting.

Forget that malarkey about age being just a number. That’s arrant nonsense. The difference between a child of 10, a middle-ager of 45 and a coot of 73 is just a number?

Dream on, brother.

When you’re in your 60s, you realize you’re no kid or anywhere near it. But turning 70 is quite an eye-opener.

More and more I notice this phenomenon: “Future” vanishes. That long, straight macadam that disappears into the distance as if you’re motoring toward a faraway mountain chain, the Highway of Future. Well, you’re not driving it anymore, Bub.

Instead, you’re on Present Lane.

When you’re younger, “future” is simply something that’s out there, and it’s way out there, so far out there that you don’t really dwell on it. It’s just there, and you know it.

In your bones.

This mostly subconscious notion of an endless future affects lots of things — attitudes, lifestyle, decisions, plans.

Passing 70 years delivers an immediacy to life that you’d never known before. It’s very interesting. I do not recommend it, but there ain’t nothing you can do about it.

Not one blessed thing.

Route of old men.

29 thoughts on “Vanishing future”

  1. From one old coot to another, remember the future is always bright. And you no longer have to put up with the BS of the past.

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    1. Carlos: While it is preferable to think the future is always bright, it isn’t, of course. As for the BS, yes, that is a positive, mostly because you can just ignore it.

      Your comment should not have been moderated. WordPress error.

      Like

  2. “On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero.” Tyler Durden

    Your road has been long, indeed. But I suspect that your healthy, no stress lifestyle may lead to “miles to go before you sleep.”

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Seventy three and still living la vida loca. Hopefully the best is yet to come. Here’s looking at you, Kid.

    Saludos,

    Kim G
    Redding, CA
    Where we are starting to get glimpses of what you write about.

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  4. As a gerontologist and a specialist in geriatrics, I would say you’ve done a bang-up job to prepare for aging in place, the most desirable of options for a septuagenarian.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Señor Zapata,

    Once again you press your nose against the truth and remain steadfast in your pace.

    Continue to think positive thoughts and move on, surround yourself with those and with others who hold them, like yours or not, and wonder if next time you will come back as a zebra or a sloth.

    It is such a blessing that each of us does not know our future any more than we do. It’s such a wonder we never really learn to live in the present until it’s about all we have … this from an old guy who never once thought he would see 73 years and mostly doesn’t deserve to.

    Best Regards to you and yours sir.
    rj

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Señor,
        I do hope we get to choose.
        To paraphrase the words of that great thinker Willie Nelson, it gets so much easier to say no when you’re old. I wonder if I could have played the guitar if I smoked those left-handed cigs.
        rj

        Liked by 1 person

  6. I just hit 70 last week. Never saw it coming! The wonderful thing is, where your pic shows a road block with stop signs, I see an open toll road with a guy with a green flag waving me through to good times ahead. Delusional? Maybe. But I don’t feel 70, and I’m picking up steam. I intend to have a good time for what’s left to my life. Happy almost birthday.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Angeline: Last week, eh? I submit it hasn’t sunk in yet. As for good times ahead, of course. I did not mean to give the impression that good times cannot be ahead. They can. Just how far ahead is the question.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Good read, as usual. I will hit the 73 mark a tad ahead of you. Seems I am always testing the waters ahead for you, as a good Canadian should.

    I find, as a new year approaches, I get a little slower in the gait, care less about new challenges, the motorcycle rides are slower and enjoy good food more often. Facebook says we’ve been friends for another year I see, good stuff. Hopefully, we will have a few more. Salude.

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    1. Yes, Bob, you always seem to be just ahead of me, age-wise, and it never fluctuates. Funny how that happens.

      In the meantime, we plod on. Better than the alternative, I suppose. Maybe not. Never really know.

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  8. Getting going each day takes a little more effort, but when compared to alternatives and memories of friends that no longer are around, I look forward to a couple more years, hopefully, and sufficient health and mind to know to enjoy them. At least down here, our stress level is reduced, which should add a few more moon cycles to our momentum.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. All I need to age in my place is some strength training with weights. I don’t “exercise” but I move and l do lift grandchildren 25-30# at the moment. Carrying them upstairs is an extra effort which tells me I should get with it.

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    1. Carole: I’m not sure that lifting grandchildren now and then is enough exercise. Get out there five days a week and walk 20 minutes. It’s easy and it really helps.

      I have no grandchildren to tote, so I walk … and other stuff.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I’m 77 and still working as a musician, but I have outlived a lot of the people who play the kind of music that I like. The result is that I don’t work as much as I did in “the old days”. But that’s OK. I don’t want to work 7 nights a week anymore. I’ve begun to look at being 80 years old as the numerical limit to accepting jobs, but I try not to think about it too much. I know one thing for sure. I don’t want to die playing Wipe Out or Proud Mary.

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  11. I’ll be seventy at the end of the year and must confess I haven’t given it much thought, yet. As a general rule for sanity, the best thing to do is to concentrate on today, no matter how old you are. Musing (fantasizing) about how great things were when we were nineteen (except for sex, they weren’t really that great, think about it) or how awful they’re going to be before we die (who the heck knows?), really, what’s the point of that?

    Happy birthday, Felipe, your brooding instincts nothwithstanding.

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    1. Señor Lanier: No birthday just yet, not till August. And I never fantasize about how great things were when I was 19 because things were not great. Thing were pretty crappy, actually.

      Things did not get really great till I was 55 and moved over the Rio Bravo.

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  12. For some reason, I ran across John Kander’s lyrics to “So What?” yesterday. I found myself humming it while reading your piece.

    For the sun will rise
    And the moon will set
    And learn how to settle
    For what you get
    It will all go on if we’re here or not
    So who cares? So what?

    By the way, I fully agree with your comment about walking 20 minutes a day. I eventually intend to crank down my current mode to that level.

    Like

    1. Señor Cotton: Those lyrics pretty much sum it up all right. There is no alternative to settling. Got no choice.

      You’re gonna walk 20 minutes a day?! What? No marathon 40-mile forced marches with electronic measuring gear in hand? What’s this world coming to?

      Like

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