Human diversity is wonderful… so is the perspective of age.
And I get it. Young people want to distinguish themselves as being far cooler than previous generations. They want to rebel and even shock their elders. Heck… we boomers did that in spades. We challenged the conservative values of the Eisenhower years with our far-out grooviness and flower power of the sixties.
Yet, even with this insight, I confess to a certain sense of bewilderment from time to time. Yesterday was one of those times.
I was riding public transportation (a hot spot for people watching) when I spied a young maiden in her twenties. Her complexion was youthfully dewy; her skin supple and unlined. She was wearing a sleeveless top, thereby displaying the taught flesh of her young arms.
But—here is where youthful folly comes in. About an inch apart on each of her arms, giant, tattooed ants crawled from her wrists to her shoulders. Now, I couldn’t help but think how lovely those ants would look in a cocktail dress in her thirties, how festive they’d appear on fiftyish arms that begin to flap in the breeze and how her grandchildren might cringe at the thought of her hugging those bug adorned arms. WHAT WAS SHE THINKING!?
Just as I was deep in contemplation, I caught sight of a young man who was facing in the opposite direction. The reason he caught my eye? He was flashing the entire train car! His jeans were belted below his not-so-tidy-whities. Now, I’m not talking low riders… I’m talking almost down to his knees. When he embarked, I saw that he could barely walk, as his thighs were awkwardly bound together by his belt. Not a fetching look to me.
Has age narrowed my mind? Do I sound cantankerous? Am I becoming a judgmental, old biddy? I confess that this all might be true. But it is with both pride and gusto that I acknowledge: A little wisdom is just fine and the Feisty Side of Fifty is a great place to be!