Devion's Views #233

YIKES, I'M LXXXV (posted May 27, 2021)

When: May 25, 2021, morning

Where: Chez Devion

What: Another milestone

The Players: My Brain and My Body

Brain: (whispering) Ronnie, wake up. It's morning kiddo. Congratulations, we made it, we're LXXXV.

Body: (incredulous) No Way.

Brain: (enthusiastic) Way.

How do you feel this fine morning?

Body: How do I feel? I'm LXXXV years old. Let me spell it out from my perspective: Everything that should be stiff, isn't. Everything that shouldn't be, is. Everything else either aches, creaks, groans or crackle's. The plumbing is problematic. We need two pair of glasses to see properly and half the time you can't remember where you left them. Kapish?

Want more examples?

Brain: Umm, no. I get it. But sadly, I don't think you do.

Have you forgotten that I've been with you every step of the way, but recently you've become a "glass half-empty" grumpy geezer.

Yes we're old, get over it.

My job is to keep us rolling down this pot-holed highway of life, until we're done. Kapish?

Simply put "that's the way it is" but never forget, we're in this together; partners and teammates for life.

Let me try to put it into perspective (for you) with two analogies.

The first is related to an automobile:

We rolled out of the factory in 1936, all shiny and new. However, it took 20+ years, with help from many others who cared about us, to make this car run efficiently. We were very fortunate because it continued to run well for another 40 years, thanks to plenty of help and guidance from mentors, loved ones and expert "body" mechanics.

And now, after 85 years, the 1936 Cord 810 model HOTROD, is a broken down rusting jalopy; running for the most part on vapours while being held together with electrical tape and bailing wire.

The miracle: Our ancient jalopy is still running (albeit not fast) with expert help from a platoon of mechanics (medics) prescribing pills, potions, lotions, eye drops and vitamins + the ever loving support of Mrs. D., a loving family, and friends. (And, as Martha Stewart says, that's a good thing)

The second analogy is about a gruelling sports event: We've been running a life-long decathlon. And, guess what, we're now half way through the eighth event. And if I can be boastful, that's pretty damned good (especially) for ancient geezers.

And, despite dealing with spinal stenosis, arthritis, skin cancer, perpetual neck and back pain, gimpy knees and sore hips, we can still ride the stationary bike for 20 minutes, lift five pound weights for 10, shuffle down the street and back (most days) and care for our tiny "farm"; tending the tomatoes, strawberries, herbs, flowers and shrubs (all in pots), we're still here, chugging along and, feisty as ever. (And that is a good thing)

Body: Yes indeed, it certainly is. Thanks for the pep talk. My funk has lifted.

Brain: Great. It's now time for 'Carpe Diem'. It's 'our' special birthday and we will a) celebrate, b) reflect on our past and, c) contemplate our future.

Body: You're hallucinating again. Contemplate our future? We don't even buy green bananas anymore.

Brain: OK smart ass. Let's get those body parts coordinating for our first physical challenge of the day...getting out of bed.

I want you to work with me now...gently swing your legs off the mattress to bring our body into an upright sitting position.

Body: Things are looking up, that only took three tries.

Brain: Now place both feet firmly on the floor and gently rise to an erect standing position. Be very careful, if you do this move too fast, I get dizzy and we lose our balance (again).

Body: Always the smart ass. Sitting up there, all high and mighty, issuing orders while I have to do all the heavy lifting.

Brain: Yes. That's precisely why I'm in better condition than you.

Body: Don't be too boastful Mr. High and Mighty. I've noticed you're forgetting more. Like yesterday, you left me standing with the fridge door open and no instructions. What the hell was I supposed to be doing with the newspaper I was holding? We stood there so long a shooting pain, like being hit by lightning, travelled from the back of our neck, down our spine to our toes. I'm beginning to worry about your memory.

Brain: You're right. It's occurring more frequently. Something's amiss with the neuron circuit connections. I'm working on a synapses bypass.

Regardless, we must move on despite our deteriorating faculties. We're an inseparable duo.

Body: You're right. What's next.

Brain: It's time for the forward motion movement move, which require you to focus...

a) propel each leg forward, from the bedroom in the direction of the 'throne room',

b) position our body, comfortably, on our porcelain throne,

c) patiently wait for something good to happen.

Body: No problem in that department. In fact, everything happens much too fast and too often, these days. That's the reason I rely on your memory about identifying where all the pit stops are located in the neighbourhood.

Brain: Understood. Now let's go onto our morning scavenger hunt. Finding the newspapers that are randomly tossed (by the delivery persons) into the courtyard, never near the front door especially when its raining.

Once located, slowly bend and try to pick up two newspapers. (It's prudent to have a cellphone handy in the event we are unable to unbend and need to call for assistance)

After breakfast, Brain and Body enjoy their highlight of the morning...a long warm shower.

While showering, Brain says to Body: Been thinking about our mobility-assist equipment. We currently have three canes, a pair of 'walking' ski polls and a walker. I think it's time to start shopping for one of those "cool", fast and fancy old-fart scooters.

Body: Why?

Brain: Well, before our next birthday, we have to face the "dreaded" driver's licence physical exam and memory test. What if Dr. B. should fail us? She nearly did the last time. I think she's out to get us.

Body: Geez, you may be right.

Brain: Listen, we should thank our lucky star for all the blessings we've received so far...

1) How well Mrs. D. looks after us.

2) Our family.

3) The spectacular view we see every day outside the living room picture window; Brentwood Bay, the boats in the marina, the blue sky reflected off a calm Pacific Ocean, the Malahat mountain in the background.

4) Observing local wildlife in action: the varieties of birds, bees, deer, racoons, rabbits, lizards, squirrels, and (very occasionally) transient bears and cougars.

5) The afternoon siesta that recharges the batteries in preparation for...

6) The 4:00 p.m. cocktail hour.

Really, why at our stage in life, would we complain about anything when we live in one of the most beautiful places on the planet.

The highlight of today was the virtual ZOOM birthday party with family in Ontario, that made this day, very special.


Foreground L to R: One candle, spot prawns and             Birthday “boy" talking to the family in Ontario on
cocktail sauce. Background L to R: Under the ribbon         ZOOM. The napkins with #50 were placed there to
and "Happy Birthday” sign; rather than "birthday cake"     (apparently) make me feel younger.
the guest of honour always opts for his favourite
desert, a bowl of tapioca pudding.

Body: I really miss the hugs.

Brain: It's sad that we have to grow old to appreciate we needed help when we were very young and need the same kind of help (again) when we are very old. That mirrors the chestnut saying "Diapers to Depends or the cycle of life".

We're considered now 'revered ancients' and should accept, every day is a bonus.

Don't fret about the future. When our turn comes, I have it on good authority we will return "to Stardust".

Body: It's been a great day. Good night Brain and thanks again for the pep talk. I will really try to be more cheerful.

Brain: Good night Body. I'll wake you up in the morning.

                                                                    GRINCH'S OF THE WEEK

Shame on the big banks, who decided to raise their fees (during a pandemic), while making billions in profit every quarter. There's a special place in hell for placing greed ahead of Canadians that are hurting.

Shame on the Liberal government, who will do nothing about it. There's a special place in hell for gutless politicians.

Ron Devion, No Guts, No Glory