He said he was 87 and that he had been married to his second wife for “so long he couldn’t remember when she wasn’t a part of him” and then he laughed.
“We were in our fifties when we got married. You probably think fifty sounds really old, but it is not.”
I laughed and told him I used to think 50 sounded old and then I reached an age where it didn’t sound…old.
Ok, it sounded old but not like it once had.
Now I was old enough to understand what my parents meant when I asked them to think back 30 years and answer questions that in theory should have been relatively easy to answer.
I figured if you were at least 20 or older you would remember certain things never quite realizing how much life could get stuffed inside your head and make it tougher to pull out information that you might expect to just know.
We were sitting in the waiting room of the service department of the car dealer when he started talking to me.
He wanted to know why I had two cellphones and an iPad, was I a father and did I understand technology well enough to explain how you could meet a girl online and care about more than looks.
I smiled and said I could answer all of his questions.
Some People See & Some People Know…Things
I told him I started blogging in 2003 or maybe it was 2004 and explained it is like an online journal.
“People can read your thoughts and ideas and then comment upon them. Sometimes they put comments on the posts, sort of like a letter to the editor or sometimes they send the write an email.”
He nodded his head and asked if you could put pictures in a blog post and I said yes.
“Blogging doesn’t require significant technical expertise. The bigger issue is can you write posts that are educational, entertaining and or informative.
Can you make people want to read your words day after day.”
When he asked me if I thought I had been successful with that I shrugged my shoulders and said “maybe a little bit.”
He looked thoughtfully out of the window at the mechanic working on a car and asked if I thought his 30 something year-old grandson could use a blog to meet a girl.
I said men and women meet through blogging all the time and that it was definitely possible to find a partner that way.
“I can’t tell you how hard or how easy it is to find the right one, but I can assure you that you can get to know a little bit about people from reading what they right and they can get to know something about you.”
So he asked again how long I have been blogging and how many different blogs I have and I laughed.
“Why so many?”
“Just sort of worked out that way. They serve different purposes. I don’t update them all like I used to, but I keep them all going…more or less.
It is not easy baring all, so sometimes you bare less in one place and share more in another, assuming you share at all.”
I saw a post on Facebook from someone who claimed the most recent shooting in Colorado proved gun control doesn’t work and another that said criminals don’t follow the law.
For a moment I thought about confronting the posters about lies they were spinning because it infuriated me to see them suggest there is nothing we can do.
That is a common lie from those who don’t want to have the hard discussions about ways to make changes.
It is easier to try to spread fear and suggest that it won’t work because criminals don’t follow laws or to scare people by saying some people want to remove all guns.
There is a middle ground that says we can have the discussion because even if we don’t eradicate gun violence we can reduce it.
Because saving one life is like saving an entire universe and we can do better than just one.
Maybe it is by making sure the current laws are enforced or maybe it is by using technology. Perhaps it is both alongside of more mental health programs.
Whatever and however it goes it is time to stop lying about our ability to make it better because it is false to say there is nothing we can do.
We can and we should..
We tried out a local Hibachi place tonight. Sat down at the grill, ordered some Bourbon, a steak and sushi.
Gave a hard look at the grandma across the room who thought it was appropriate to encourage her granddaughter to scream.
Took a long sip and mulled over whether I would be the guy to say something and laughed.
I didn’t have to turn 50 to be the grumpy old man but I also didn’t have to be the guy who would scare the kid by telling her grandma she was acting like an inconsiderate Luilu.
Took another sip and thought about how crazy the world is right now and silently thought “I live in madness.”
Three hours later almost everyone is asleep but myself, the dog and my teenage son. So here I sit at the dining room table looking through the fog at the road ahead wondering what comes after 50.
Somewhere on the other side of town the 87-year-old is presumably watching television or speaking with his second wife, the one who was very young when he married her, because fifty is almost like being a kid.
I wonder if he ever talked to his grandson about starting a blog for the purpose of trying to meet a woman and if said grandson curses a man he never met for giving grandpa an idea.