Remember going to old people’s houses when you were a kid? They were dark and dreary, smelled musty. There was no reading material for kids. Worst of all, there were no toys to play with.
Lace curtains covered the windows–which were never opened. Something to do with bad air. Hand crocheted lace doilies covered stuffed chair arms and headrests. They always fell down when kids got restless. What good were doilies–anyway? Playing with them always got you in trouble.
Old people liked to sit around and talk. Talked about boring stuff and the good old days. When a dollar bought something, and people knew the value of hard work.
Fidgeting didn’t work. Neither did the sad-eyed, “can we go now, mom?” Too much fidgeting brought the rapier-sharp “death stare” and the excuse, “you didn’t get enough sleep last night.”
Their pets were old–too. Old dogs or cats, half-blind or deaf. They sat on their owner’s laps and didn’t do much. Old people seemed to know if they needed something.
The truth–old people were tired. Tired of being sick. Tired of being taken for granted. Tired of disrespect. Tired of being thought of as just being old.
The roofing crew down the street started before 6AM.
Roofing’s hard work any time of the year. That’s why you only see skinny, wiry guys doing this type of work.
Could you imagine what a hazard it would be, if old, heavy-set guys, like myself, tried roofing in this summer heat? Fat guys falling off roofs everywhere–into the shrubbery. I did blister my knees once, cleaning out the gutters.
Equal opportunity offenders walked on eggshells. Looked for opportunities to please themselves. Hid from overly sensitive souls.
How did they find room for all that hate in their hearts?
Save the planet. Save the planet. Who were we saving it for? A generation that didn’t appreciate what they already had? Look what happened to newspapers printed on real paper.
A mother shushed her baby daughter with a bite of pancake.
At another table, a family clad in sports paraphernalia, planned the day’s events.
Across the room, an older gentleman with silver-rimmed glasses, sat alone. His gray hair and round face, lost in an ocean of senior citizens.
“Two eggs over easy, whole wheat toast, a side order of grits, and black coffee,” Arthur ordered from the pleasant, middle-aged waitress.
Waves of loneliness bubbled up from within. Arthur’s calloused hands rested, firmly clasped on the table top. Nothing was ever the same after the death of the all night diner.
Can not turn back
The hands of time
Couldn’t if I wanted
Now it seems before I begin
I’m back to where I started
Since I was born three years before Univac, the first commercial computer in 1951–they were something like this.