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A few things tell me I am older

January 24, 2010
by Kathleen Mears
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Now that I am over 60, there are things that tell me I am older. I can tune in to a music award show and only know a few of the nominees. I endeavor not to bring up past events any farther back then 10 years, because the twenty-something aides will not know what I am talking about.

Sometimes when a younger aide reads the blurb on my DVD rental, it contains a word they do not recognize or cannot pronounce. Recently, an aide stumbled on one, so I had her spell it. The word was Auschwitz. I was surprised she did not know it. Then I wondered if I knew about Auschwitz in my 20s, or had I learned about it later.

Certain foods served here show my age. Some younger aides have never eaten beets. When one asked me to describe their taste, I let them try one and said beets contain iron and magnesium. Unfortunately, the taster made a horrible face of dislike.

When a twenty-something aide opened my prunes, she said she had never tried one. I was surprised and gave her one to taste, which she liked. I told her prunes are now sold as dried plums, probably to appeal to younger people.

I have to admit that I am a bit more intimidated by foreign languages than younger people. But since I took two years of Latin and one of French I am pretty good at deciphering Latin-based languages.

As far as clothing goes, I already know I am an old fogey. I have been one forever because I am a conservative dresser. It astounds me to see the clothing that younger people wear on the street, not to mention what they wear to parties and sometimes what they wear to work. We were brought up to look our best at all times.

Each day as I grow a bit older, I try to exercise tolerance with younger people starting out in the world. I do not want to alienate them because I have stories to tell them, even if I do tell them over and over someday.

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Kathleen Mears

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Kathleen Mears has been a nursing home resident in Ohio for 20 years. She is an incomplete...