You’re probably saying,
“What an idiot. Everyone knows the expression is 60 is the new 40.”
Even Newsweek Magazine did a cover story on the topic of so-called baby boomers hitting the big 6 – 0.
Well, I would beg to differ that this new 60 is anything like still being a young 40 years old, with “young” being simply a matter of perspective.
I think anyone who really thinks that is not the case is either 40 years old and looking ahead 20 years and just hoping for the best, or is already 60 years old and is either somewhat delusional, suffering dementia, or spaced-out on medical marijuana.
In response to the commonly held cliché on what the new 60 supposedly is, Lewis Black unabashedly opines on his new album with comments like,
“60 is old, you piece of s#!t”
While I still have almost a year before I hit this major milestone, I can already tell you a few indications that being 60 is no way the same as being 40.
At 40 some guys are still running after women.
At 60 what is running is mostly my nose, which often goes unabated and unnoticed until my wife yells at me to wipe it.
At 40 you still have some semblance of normal sleeping hours.
At 60 you find yourself asleep when you should be staying awake, and awake when you should be sound asleep.
At 40 you might pee a few times a day.
At 60 you pee a few times every night, not to mention the dribble drops you frequently leave on the front of your pants.
At 40 you probably still have a full head of hair.
At 60 you have a full head of hair alright, except it originates primarily from your nose and ears.
At 40 your moaning in bed is primarily pleasurable in nature.
At 60 your moaning is caused every time you to have to sit up and get out of bed (usually to go take a pee).
At 40 you sometimes still like to listen to your favorite music kind of loud.
At 60 you have no choice but to play everything loud all the time, just to hear it.
At 40 you may occasionally stay up partying until 5 A.M.
At 60 you typically are eating dinner by 5 P.M.
At 40 you still have some decent muscle tone.
At 60 a collision on the ski slopes results in sore ribs that take months to heal.
Well, you get the idea.
At least CBS News questions whether this whole “60 is the new…” concept doesn’t have it backwards.
In reality, none of this really matters. Notwithstanding the limited reprieve from the aging process you might enjoy as a result of eating properly and exercise, when it comes to aging it is what it is.
This post begins a series of reports on activities I plan on undertaking this, My Year of Turning 60, where I will attempt to act like I’m really 40 in a series of fun, and sometimes physically demanding, activities, where people—including my wife—will certainly point and whisper about my sad mid-life crisis and need for ego inflation.
I suspect that I will likely be subject to frequent physical reminders that I am almost at the ripe old age of 60, and by no means still 40.
Events like the Bay to Breakers foot race, the Donner Lake Triathlon, my first attendance at Burning Man, my first attempt at surfing, and my first marathon. All of these being subject to my actual physical limitations, notwithstanding any application of liquid euphoria enhancers.
In the meantime, I will quote Lewis Black one more time, where he responds to the 60 is the new 40 philosophy by yelling,
“60 is 60 and 40 is 40.”
“THAT’S WHY THEY’RE DIFFERENT f#@king NUMBERS”
Well played, Mr. Lewis.
When I turned 50 I created a beer label for some ale I brewed and bottled with the line,
“You’re only as old as you act.”
My guess is that by the end of the My Year of Turning 60 year, the line will be,
“You’re only as old as you feel.”
If I believe Lewis Black, the answer to that will be simply “old.”