Thursday, April 11, 2019

Another Sign Your Are a Geezer

       It is my birthday today.  I am well into geezerhood at 84 and enjoying the kind wishes from friends and family.   Of course there was a happy birthday from my membership in AARP too.
     As I reflected on my origins I was reminded of my birth story.  I was the second child born to my mother in her second marriage after being widowed at a an early age and then married to my father.  In the era of my birth in the mid 1930's home births were quite common.  Thus my mother gave birth to me in the rented farm house at the intersection of Preemption and Wayne Center Roads in Wayne County, New York.  The equivalent of a mid-wife was in attendance.  I was told it was Aunt Louise who must have been the sister of my grandmother Emma Tange.   
     Somehow my wife and I began conversing this morning about birth certificates.  I couldn't remember whether I had one in my possession. However as usual she went right to the appropriate file and showed me mine!  She was wondering what my birth weight might have been.  That information was not shown.  As one would expect the date of birth was shown along with the parent's names and my designated name.   However the date of the official registry was two years after I was born.  It wasn't until 1937 I was officially on the books.
      So what does this have to do with being another sign I am a geezer?   My guess is that almost all births in the United States post WWII  were hospital births.   So if I am trying to determine if someone is a geezer beyond observing them close up, I can ask them if they were born at home or in a hospital.  My guess is if they were born at home there is a high probability they qualify for geezerhood.

Friday, April 5, 2019

Routines and New Experiences

      During the ski season I have a great routine for my day.  For six days of the week I am up and about early enough to be at the ski slope by 9:00 AM for a 9:30 AM ride on the lift.  Unless there are purely horrible conditions I keep this schedule without fail.  Maybe in my geezerhood I am quite rigid about my schedule.   I also enjoy the routine of a morning coffee break with my fellow geezers followed by a few more runs often past noon or even until 1:00 PM.  I am subject to a certain amount of ribbing by my companions as I eat my daily apple fritter with my coffee.  Thank God I am not a diabetic as some of my contemporaries are.  The fritter routine is a year round habit!
       Many of my companions check out after coffee but several of us head out for additional exercise.  During the ski season beyond the joy of skiing the activity serves as appropriate exercise.  Post skiing volunteer work may be the next part of the day.  The gift of retirement is also an opportunity for an afternoon nap for recharging.
      Now that the season is over I am returning to a modified routine.  With an ailing back I have a year round exercise in the morning to iron out the kinks and get me into the day.  During the off season or non skiing days I spend up to an hour pedaling a recumbent stationary bike.  A good time to read the papers and catch up on e-mails.  The time goes by quickly and I hardly know I am working out.  The bike is nicely place in a glassed in sun-porch so I can watch neighbors walking by on the road as well as the birds flying about.   The rest of the day is taken up with a variety of activities and tasks.  I delight in solving each day at least two crossword puzzles.  My wife recognizes that I am probably a crossword puzzle solving addict.
       As a reader you may wonder why I have rambled on about my routines in this blog?   I am speculating whether other geezers are heavily locked into their routines?  I know some are fishermen, and others are avid golfers.  As an observer from afar I see many golfers who have specific regular days and tee times.   I know when my routine is disturbed I can find it troubling.  At other times I find a disturbance a welcome change of pace.  Bottom line.  Often oldsters can get real cranky if the routine is disturbed.  However, to stay young in spirit I hope that if my routine is disturbed I can still be flexible enough to adapt.  Meanwhile I will enjoy my routines and at the same time look forward to new experiences.

Monday, April 1, 2019


    Yesterday my local ski area closed for the season.  Pond skimming in the afternoon was entertaining as most participants took a cold bath and were fished out by the Ski Patrol!   At least on person made it all the way across the pond on telemark skis.  It was a lady in a fluorescent green onesie!  Some of the brave ones made two runs!  Not a geezer in the bunch of pond skimmers!
     I am now in transition mode for my daily activities.  After 90 days of skiing I am adjusting to a different schedule.  I certainly will have more time for writing this blog. I have been remiss in being creative in commenting on geezer activities both for skiing and other venues.
      The transition today was particularly hard since I awoke to at least four inches of fresh snow glistening at the moment in a warming sun.  What a tragedy the ski area is closed.  Of course it has to be a business decision.  Except for a few die hard skiers the ski area has little clientele.  Obviously they are operating at a loss in these waning days.  The main reason to stay open is to encourage more people to buy season passes.
       In my transition to the off season there are a number of chores to make it more palatable.   All the gear has to be cleaned and stored.  I'll put a preserving wax on the skis after I clean them.  Boots will be thoroughly dried and hung on the basement wall.   Since my trusty boot bag has seen better days,  I just ordered a new one on-line.    My wife has also been kind enough to special wash all my ski clothing.   Now is the time for me to get at my Honey-Do list that she has been so tolerantly delayed my completion. 
      In reflection on the 2018-19 season I note it was a season of highs relative to ski conditions and Bluebird days.   However it was a sad season relative to departure of several of my geezer friends from the slopes due to health issues.  Makes me appreciate what I can still do on the slopes and that each day is a gift.
Meanwhile as some of us geezers age out we are finding a few that are geezer skiers  in training.   It the new generation of geezers in their 60's and early 70's.   Good to know our legacy of geezer skiing will have a new generation.  Isn't that appropriate?  Yes, we all are in transition regardless of our age.
        Looking forward to a great summer on the tennis court with my wife Nancy and keeping fit for the 2019-20 ski season.  The season pass is purchased and waiting to be used.