April 18, 2019
BANGOR DAILY NEWS (BANGOR, MAINE

Aging brings wisdom

I am a senior citizen who has reached the age of reason and would like to give my perspective on the youth of today. I do not hunger for the indiscriminate enthusiasm of youth. I do not need to take stairs three at a time. I do not see a sucked-in tummy as any kind of accomplishment. I exalt in my ability to drop into sleep during a concert or a lecture, I have no envy for those young people who remain alert when the performance is not worth my attention. As a result, I sleep, dream and escape.

My moments are rich with memories, my future textured with anxiety, fear, hope and humor. Irony is my faithful companion, and you must have gone around the track a few times to develop a fully armed sense of irony. In that way, you are able to see the familiar distance between what is and what should have been.

If my aging brings on anger or melancholy, so be it. I hate people who are continually understanding, who wake up cheery and spend the whole day beaming. There is plenty to be mad about and I love a good rage. There are many things that make me sad, and it’s wonderful to wallow in the mud of a well-deserved sadness. But it is most satisfying to look in the mirror and see how that young, unmarked, eager young man has been turned by aging into a weathered old man of incredible character and unlimited wisdom. Maxwell Spector Calais


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