Sunday, July 05, 2015 3:56 PM
I used to resent the loss of clarity that age brings. But lately I’ve just been letting it happen, kind of enjoying the montage of unprompted feelings and memories that swirl around inside me, changing from one moment to the next while I simply sit here.
Fifty-nine years of experiences, of sights, sounds, smells, tastes, actions, feelings—it’s a lot, even with our brains designed to drop several stitches as we go along, retaining only details and prompts instead of the entirety of events. And I’ve reached a tipping point, where the exciting memories of my youth are more vivid than my actual perceptions, here and now.
I couldn’t understand these things when I was younger—I doubt I was supposed to, either. Now that I’m old enough to stop making long-term plans, starting a career or a business would be folly, going back to school would have me wondering just what I’d do with a degree at the ripe old age of three years from now. Even learning for learning’s sake is a bust at this point—having forgotten most of what I’ve learned over the years, I see little point in cramming new stuff in there. Plus I spent two decades learning every new piece of software and hardware that came along—and even if I could still remember any of it, it’s all worthless knowledge about obsolete tech, here in 2015.
No, the coming thing for old folks is to indulge in the philosophical musings that come naturally to someone whose spent fifty, sixty years watching the comic-tragic rushings-about of modern society. The random memories that poke their heads in—the random influx of old passions re-ignited—these moments come and go like flittering birds, chirping of immortality. We can unreel in our minds the conditions that prevent the conditions that prevent the conditions that would ‘fix’ waste and want and anger—we’ve lost the ability to exclaim, “Well, why don’t they just fix it?!” Unfortunately, we know why—human nature creates and enforces the madness of society—we cannot be better than what we are. And—the world is a big place.
Here’s a short improv: