Last year was my twenty-fifth college reunion and my thirtieth high school reunion. Twenty-five years? Thirty years? How did that happen? I stare at those numbers in disbelief, partly because the time seems to have passed so quickly and partly because of the implications they have for me. Does this mean I’m getting old? Worse, does it mean I am old? Perish the thought!
They say that age is a state of mind. They also say it’s just a number. Whatever else it may be, it’s a concept that is applied differently in different cases. Think, for example, of a seventy-five year old piece of furniture. (Maybe something you saw in YesterNook last week.) We typically hear these kinds of responses to such an object:
“It’s a classic!”
“They don’t make ‘em like that any more!”
“It’s so solid that it probably has that many more years of use left in it.”
“Sure doesn’t look its age.”
How many of those same sentiments are typically applied to a seventy-five year old person? Now, this is not an essay about society’s attitude towards the aging (even though we’re all aging every day). This really isn’t the place for that sort of thing. I won’t even get into the way that the term “antique” implies value and worth when it’s applied to objects. Instead, I want to offer a paradigm shift of sorts.
From now on, I’m dealing with my encroaching old age as if I were a piece of furniture. You can play along too, if you like.
I’m not old. I’m vintage.
I’m not aging. I’m becoming a classic example of my era.
Those aren’t age spots. They’re patina.
Those aren’t wrinkles. They’re distressed details.
I am not sagging and bagging in places. I have classic lines.
And, of course, I don’t look my age. Plus, I’m so solid I still have many more years of use left.
Come on down to YesterNook this weekend and see lots of furniture, accessories, and other collectibles that are just like me!