Friday, September 2, 2016

What old people can do

It is fashionable in many circles to hide from aging or to try to ignore or deny it.  "Oh, you are not old! You are experienced, mature, senior…"  In a sense that is quite true.  Over 70, one is experienced and mature and senior.  One may also and simultaneously be forgetful, overconfident, grumpy and arrogant.  I believe that in the US and the world as a whole, human health and longevity are improving.  If that is so, I think we can expect more older people who are alive and active than the humans have ever experienced before.  There are already many signs of people living in greater numbers to higher ages.

The movie Gran Torino with the older actor/director Clint Eastwood portrayed an older feisty man who purposely challenged a gang of young neighborhood toughs without regard to the threats to his safety.  That movie was one of the first items I saw depicting the sacrifice a person could make if he/she was willing to die.

Similarly, an 88 year old retired judge has made an offer:
A retired judge in Australia has offered to swap places with a refugee and live the rest of his life in one of the country's offshore detention camps.

Jim Macken, who is 88, said he had written to Immigration Minister Peter Dutton to offer a "body swap".

"I understand this is an unusual request but I offer it in complete sincerity," Mr Macken wrote.

Don't underestimate the younger set but, as Grace said, don't underestimate the old set, either.

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