Sal and I built to the 30 year rule and we started when I was 55. Whatever we built only had to last as long we were likely to last. And most people are lucky to see 85. Ergo – the 30 year rule.
They may still be here breathing but having good vision at that time is not a given (so they don’t see 85 as it zooms like a comet right by them). Very few see 100 even fleetingly. Time flies after 65. The 30 year rule seemed logical at the time. Hell, I even added supports and extra reinforcements on most things we constructed and so we probably made the 35 year rule without even knowing it.
A little maintenance and we might make 40. Me? 95? I don’t think so.
Problem: we are 11 years into it. And I can still do the math. We are working to the 20-ish year rule right now and, of course, there’s a certain chill in the air when I think about that. So, I try not to.
Mind you and ironically, this is when I decided to make things out of heavy metal. And make no mistake – when I make something out of metal, it is heavy. My new funicular cart will be pushing 700 pounds. My guess is that it will easily achieve the 300 year rule. It is mostly heavy, double hot-dipped galvanized angle steel and it seems, at times, virtually indestructible. Did I mention ‘heavy’?
In other words, I may be entering some sort of welding influenced denial stage in my life. I’m not sure. I could build this damn thing out of Styrofoam (with epoxy and duct tape) and it might last 20 years! Seriously, a cedar-strip funicular cart would definitely make it. What am I doing?
My kids will inherit after the last of us pass but, with Sal, that could be a long time. She’s got genes and she knows how to use ’em. Still, they can at least count on a double-hot-dipped funicular to comfort them when that time comes.
“Geez, Dave, why so morbid?”
Not my fault. I blame Mike. He’s 30. He comes by and borrows tools now and then, talks, laughs at my jokes. We’re friends. Somehow the 30 year rule came up. “I’m 30!”
“Yeah. I know. Seems like a long time, right? Well, I am already down to the last twenty of MY 30. You can see the math, right? You just lived it. Now imagine that you only get that same amount back. Scary, right?”
Mike cracked up. “You gotta do stand-up! Man! You are funnn-nneee. Who talks like this?”
“Old guys talk like this. Then they die. Then there’s a bit of a lull and then you start talking like this. Trust me, man. Death is just around the corner.”
“So, does that mean I don’t have to bring your hammer-drill back?”
“Only if you want to meet him a lot sooner.”
Huge progress around stem cells and growing replacement parts. Currently stem cells are injected into failing disks to regrow them in situ. So who knows what types of regeneration will be happening in the future.
And lucky them! But, methinks I am a too late. The next ‘body part’ to be regenerated will be the penis. We all know that. They are already ‘spamming’ up sales as I write. Seems I can get enlargers and stretchers already. Then they’ll go for some other ‘good-for-business’ part like lips, noses and butts. Think hot dogs. That formula is proven. Make stuff out of lips, noses, butts and gristle. It sells!
And that, my friends, is the short term future of stem cells.
Age is just a state of mind! An ‘old’ person is someone who is ten years older than you. But what happens when there are no ‘older than you’? I guess then you really are old! I’ll check back in with you in another ten.
A state of mind? Like Alzheimers?
A company I used to work for would hire summer students.
We hired an 18 year old who was one of the laziest, unmotivated, shirkers or work I’ve ever come across ( he was one of the managers kids…nuff said).
Anywho, we were sitting around one day at lunch an I realized it was my birthday. “Holy crap! I’m 47 today!”
The 18 year old looked at me and smirked and said,” Man ! Thats OLD!”
I smiled and said “Do you no how long 47 years is?. Its how long YOU have to work before you can retire at 65!”
The look of horrified realization began to dawn on his face.
Everyone else in the lunchroom burst out laughing.
I enjoyed reminding him of that for the rest of his 3 month tenure.
Still in touch….? Or did your magnetic personality somehow escape his gravitational field?
I still remember the guy who – at the mill – explained how a date was supposed to work after I told him that I ‘had a really good time’ the night before (me and a 16 year old cutie went to the movies and had White Spot burgers while parked in Stanley park). His illumination-on-dating was a horror show to a 17 year old!
That was 50 years ago and I still remember the shock! Suffice to say….it should not be repeated.
Hahahahahahaha. Good one.
I ran into him at my local Safeway.
He had graduated university and was working as a “bag boy”……
He looked like he wanted to crawl under the counter when he saw me and I kept talking to him.
I finished with ,” Only 45 years to go!”
He doesnt work there anymore.
Did I do something wrong?
Honestly? I dunno. I doubt that his world revolves around you. Having said that, you gave him a HUGE insight. It might not be a bad idea to follow it up with some good advice.
“What kind of good advice?”
I dunno. You are 50-something and sane – you must know something (most people don’t)…share it. Share it with the bag-boys with degrees…they need it. Bad. When you are done with that generation of ‘lost’ youth, turn your hand to old geezers. Dibs on your first consultation.
My best advice to a younger person who was angry with his parents for unsolicited advice, “When your parents are telling you not to do something they are telling you not to repeat the same stupid mistakes they made. They’re telling you this now to save you the time THEY wasted thinking they had all the answers and were smarter than everyone else.”
Not sure if it took or not.
As for people that are older than me?
Enjoy the single malt in moderation.
It lasts longer that way.
‘Moderation in all things’ is a popular idea but I would add, ‘….even moderation’.
“And I lift my glass to the awful truth
which you can’t reveal to the ears of youth
Except to say it isn’t worth a dime…”
Well at least we have lots of material for the obit 😉 love you guys!!
I am thinking of ‘skipping’ my funeral….