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Those Were The Days, My Friend, LaLaLaLaLaLaLa

Still going strong...file photo of senior citizens ahead of a half marathon in Delhi
Still going strong...file photo of senior citizens ahead of a half marathon in Delhi
 
You know your age has passed the half-way house and it is all downhill from now on when:
 
People tell you to take it easy, slow down, you are not getting any younger, lean back a bit - and you hate them for saying it. 
 
Everyone has advice on cutting out various foods. You never hear enough of it as they babble on about salt, sugar, coffee, tea, fried foods, cigarettes ...oh go away and leave me alone.
 
You actually read those "I am John's liver" type of articles in the magazines.
 
Your hypochondria gallops around like a young colt and every symptom you read about or see on TV you know you have it, no doubt at all. 
 
You actually have memories and talk about the good old days.
 
All the young people suddenly get very busy when you say, "Let me tell you when I was your age...".
 
You cannot believe what things cost as compared to your childhood and you can't wait to share the comparison if you can get someone to stay long enough to listen.
 
All the job ads are for people old enough to be your son.
 
Ads on herbal medicines and what they do to your system fascinate you.
 
Someone sees you jogging and tells you it is dangerous at your age.
 
Gravity seems to be winning hands down because now life is one big sag.
You wish your metabolism wasn't such a lazy sod.
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You go around the house yelling about electricity bills and switching all the lights off. 
 
You meet some young guy whose swash hasn't buckled and he reminds you of what you once were, and you loathe him for it. Then you go home and sadly realise you'll never run the 400 metres again. 
 
Someone gives you his card and you spend a minute squeegeeing your eyes to read it; is that number a 6 or an 8 or a 5 squint, squint. 
 
You overhear someone call you that old eccentric.
 
Your kids tell you this is not your type of a movie, it is too `now'.
 
No one in this generation knows who Malcolm X is.
 
You find today's youngsters lazy, shiftless, spoilt, pampered, ill-mannered louts ...not much different from what you were.
 
You go to a party and yearn for a chair to sit in; then you don't want to get up every time a lady comes in.
 
All your food intake is on a quota system. The doctor talks about you in third person, like what does he like to eat or how was he feeling this morning and you want to say, hey, I am here, okay talk to me.
 
You can't open a lid and you go red in the face trying, and then some kid comes and yanks it off and, upstaged, you go looking for Deep Heat.
 
Your whole breakfast is a saga in roughage and fibre and you actually read the ingredients on the packet to see if you have had 60 per cent of your riboflavin - whatever that is.
 
You discuss the details of your flipping daily `walk' with others of your age ...like who cares, did you ever think you'd do that?
 
If you do something young at heart your family is embarrassed, like not at your age...well, whyever not?
 
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You actually find you bought a jar of anti-wrinkle cream.
 
You can't believe this is the generation which is going to inherit your legacy, 1 mean what a mess they'll make of it.
 
You get all sbmaltzy and gooey eyed in the movies, all that soppy sentiment for Mr One-time Tough Guy.
 
Your after-late-night morning recovery time is two mornings, and you like fizzy solutions like fiuit salt and Alka Seltzer.
 
You find yourself obsessed by your digestive system and its mysteries.
 
You wonder where the time went, there was so much of it just yesterday ...it was yesterday. Itwasitwasitwas.
 
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Bikram Vohra
Bikram Vohra
Bikram Vohra has been editor of Gulf News, Khaleej Times, Bahrain Tribune, Emirates Evening Post and helped in setting up Gulf Today.

More articles by Bikram Vohra
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