Old in a World Full of Youngsters

I am an old person, in Nature’s eyes anyway, and the old are ever mystified. My groom and I: constantly mystified.We’re mystified by the packaging our razors come in. We need to enlist the help of our young people to crack them open.  We’re mystified too by the activities of these young people, who can watch television without a television and play live card games with people in other countries.

We are mystified and we’re frequently in pain: After raking all day, David walks into the house looking like a human andiron. Just that bent and bow-legged. After doing God knows what, I wake one day with a sensation in my back of a knife soaked in acid and plunged in deep.

This was just last weekend. It felt as if a rib had tilted like that one rogue slat in a set of Venetian blinds and was digging into my lungs. I couldn’t sit or recline or breathe without feeling stabbed. I prowled the house all weekend, vacuuming, washing windows, even refinishing the top of an old coffee table.

By Sunday afternoon, though, I was a wreck, and so began licking up painkillers the way an anteater licks up ants. I swallowed aspirin at 2pm, Excedrin at 6:00, Advil at 10:00. No relief. At midnight I threw down a couple of fingers of whiskey, hoping that would knock me out but no dice there either. Finally, rummaging around in the guest bathroom I came upon some expired Percocet from who knows what painful procedure, fired one down, and found relief at last at 3 a.m….

Relief that was gone with the morning dew.

So, the second my chiropractor’s office opened at 8 a.m., I called. He saw me just hours later, asked many good questions and told me to get myself to Prompt Care right away, just in case one of my organs was about to explode. 

Then, he did an adjustment on me. He pinged at my sad little skeleton like a man tuning a piano. He pinged and he thought. He pinged and he listened.

And finally he sent me home with instructions to ice the area, 20 minutes on, two hours off, for the next 24 hours – which I did. And it worked. And I was CURED.

But the story would not be complete if I did not also relate what happened mid-way through the regimen, the morning after I saw the chiropractor and before my appointment with Prompt Care: 

I went to the freezer to get the last of the bright-blue icepacks, whose fellows, all thawed now, still lay about on the floor around my bed.

But this icepack with its array of purplish-blue cells held in a thick Zip-Lock bag did not look like the other icepacks.

“Some new kind I guess,” is all I thought and took it to the couch where I wedged it against my back and commenced writing busily away on my laptop – until about 30 minutes in, when I realized that this was no icepack at all. This was a bag filled with Jell-O shots, many tiny cuplets of blueberry-flavored vodka, long since stashed in our freezer by the aforementioned young people.

What can I say? By the time I’d finished the day’s second shower, this one to quell my distinctly boozy aura, I had passed through Mystification to arrive in the land of Acceptance.

Which frankly isn’t a bad dwelling-place at all for an old person in a world full of youngsters.

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