Here is the thing, you are old if you still clean your ears with a bobby pin.
It’s not my fault. When I was a kid, my mother would press my head onto her lap, remove a bobby pin from her hair, and proceed to dig out the gobs of wax I’d collected since the last cleaning. It always felt good even while it tickled a bit.
Naturally, I have been chastised repeatedly for my flagrant disregard for putting something so small into the ear canal. Even so, when there is an itch I gotta go for it. I believe it’s because I’m old.
Here are some other indicators of getting old. If you own the pink slip on your car, chances are you’re old.
Do you drive with your hands at 10 and 2 on the steering wheel? You are old.
If you drive the speed limit because really, you have no place to hurry to, you’re old.
You’re old if your AARP Driving Course told you to leave a three second space between you and the car ahead of you while driving. This makes you almost going backwards because whenever you institute distance between you and the car ahead of you, three vehicles dodge in to fill the gap and you have to slow down again to get three seconds back. Chances are you’re old.
Ladies, if you go braless…you’re getting old.
If you recall reading Burma Shave signs along the roadside, chances are, you’re old.
If you were born before Saran Wrap or paper towels, or if your body is without a single tattoo, you are old.
Other indicators of advanced age include you have to sit down to pull on your underwear. You are old, babe.
The fact that my daughter no longer covets anything in my wardrobe just goes to prove, I must be old.
Chances are, you’re old if you have a cardiologist on speed dial.
And you might as well face it, if you are housing grown children under the pretense “They are here to help you,” you are really old and possibly advancing toward lunacy.
And you are really old if they just smile at you and no longer respond to your behavior.
My husband had a few things to add to this “old” list. For instance, he offers up: if hair grows faster out of your nose and ears than on top of your head, chances are you’re old.
If you spend more time reading the obits than watching sports, you’re old.
If you are looking at new hearing aid models instead of Victoria Secret models, you’re old, dude.
If you cannot think of a reason to stay up past 9:30 p.m., chances are you’re old.
And then in the midst of all this silliness, on Friday, Aug. 5, I saw my cardio doc at 2 p.m. and, bang, three days later on Tuesday, the 9th at o-dark-thirty, I was on my back in the Palomar cardio unit. Hell, I just had a pacemaker implanted in my chest.
Damn. Does that mean I am old? Did I wear out my heart? Now I have an ugly lump on the front of my upper left shoulder above my heart. It looks more like shrapnel than an electronic heart monitor. Lucky for this guy, he is a highly renowned cardiologist because with his suturing skill, he’d starve as a tailor.
So, you see Stephanie, it looks like my A-Fib is finally under control.
And now you know why, in lieu of last week’s events, I’ve decided to write my own obituary. At least, that way I will be certain to get in the last word: Cause of death: complications after ear wax removal.
Elizabeth Youngman-Westphal can be reached at [email protected].