Fabric Store Sillies or Age Is But a Number—-No?


Okay, by most standards, I’m considered elderly, young elderly, but old. I have found a great means of passing time somewhat productively.  I frequent fabric stores. They’re full of up energy. They stimulate my creative juices. Sometimes I find amazing bargains in the remnants bin.

Plus, such musing keeps my over-active imagination from going into dangerous neighborhoods.  Like who done me wrong and how I’ll pay them back w/o getting caught.  Do I digress? Yes.

So I’m hanging out at the nearby fabric store. I hear a clerk relating a recent incident to another customer.  She said the lines get quite long for customers waiting to have their fabric cut off the bolt. To remedy the situation, shoppers pull off a number from the wait list. When their number is called, they’re up to bat, so to speak.  To get their fabric cut.

The clerks do their best to mollify their bored, sometimes–hostile customers. Somehow.

Anyway, a woman in her forties approached the cutting table, took her number, lounged about waiting with little patience. Her sighs and huffs betrayed her ill humor.  Finally the overworked clerk asked her, “Are you sixty-three?”

The irked customer glared silently at the poor woman, then turned and left, mouthing curses and accusations.

The Generations Gaps and Gasp


I frequent Savers (a hip thrift store) because I love their merchandise and their merchandising. They hold a 30%-off sale every Tuesday for those over 55. I love it. The best day of the week is Tuesday. Most of the time.

So since September 30th, most Saver employees have dressed in Halloween costumes to promote their gargantuan Halloween costumes collection.  Cute stuff!  I had gotten used to the clerk dressed as a baby doll or the Monster-Mash checker.

I was lusting after some  copper earrings in the display case. The sales clerk came over to answer any questions.

“Won’t you be glad when Halloween finally gets here?  So you can quit dressing in those audacious get-ups?” I asked her, trying to create rapport with pleasant chit chat. I thought she was creating a  Rosie-the-Riveter statement from WWII days.

“I always dress like this. I’m a rocka-billy,” she replied. Would that the floor would have opened and I could escape undetected.  My hearing is such that I’m not even sure she said rocka-billy.

Ohh, the angst. I’m not even sure when I’m insulting people.

Mothers and Daughters and Seeking a Geographical Cure


I was a good mother. I know I was. But consult my adult daughter, mother of four adorable kids, aged three to thirteen. Whom I next-to-never see.  If I’m around, she can’t  breathe without reminding anyone nearby how lacking in mothering skills I was. Was I really that poor a mother?  A couple years ago, I began to doubt her double-barreled  guilting. Thanks be to God.

It is difficult info to absorb that much dissing on a regular basis. Veerrrry difficult.  So I took the easy way out and moved to another state.  I know what you’re thinking. A geographical cure never works! Wherever you go, there you are.  But so far, it’s working for me.

New Mexico, land of Enchantment, spirituality and New Age thinking. I love it here. Mystical experiences abound.  Every fourth denizen has had visions or at least, hallucinations.  Many eschew shaving, dying hair, deodorant, etc.

I hear there’s even NEW THOUGHT that white hair is in. I don’t buy it, however.


I just don’t go there. Unless your face can launch a thousand ships, white hair doesn’t enhance anything but fringe on a couch.

Albuquerque is a retirement haven with seven, count ’em, seven senior centers offering classes in everything from osteoporosis to safe sex for seniors.

There’s beauty in almost any direction and geographical setting.  Striking golden cottonwoods, the Rio Grande, the Jemez Mountains.  And weirdest of the weird? Santa Fe.

But these folks are my kind of people. Tolerant, forgiving, mostly educated, artistic, and old.

On Technology, Acceptance, Hearing and Life

I read somewhere that the Baby boomers are comfortable with technology and know how to profit from their parents’ screw-ups in aging.  I beg to differ about technology.  I approach every new task online with angst and ague.

“How soon before the worst that could happen happens?”  “How soon before the ‘fatal error’ message flashes?” “Where’s a three year old when I need her to get me back on track?”  “Does everyone feel as inept here as I do?”

But learning from my parents’ errors (in aging,) is a different matter. My father started to lose his hearing in both ears around age sixty.  He lived to be ninety-four.  Which means my two grown sisters, my brother and I had to endure thirty four years of ‘yell and spell’ communication.  Sure he had a hearing aid. But refused to wear it.  Didn’t need it.

So, as karma would have it, I began to go deaf in one ear around the age of fifty.  I ran to the closest hearing center to get fitted for a hearing aid. It didn’t seem to help much but at least I was ‘doing something’ about the problem.  Doesn’t that count for a few points?

I wasn’t going to do that pretend-I’m-not-deaf -so-I-don’t-have-to-do-something-about-it routine.  Over the years, I consulted doctors, health practitioners, voodoo priests, whatever, to improve my hearing.

Eventually an ear, nose and throat specialist introduced me to a hearing device that transmits what my deaf ear should hear to my ‘good’ ear via wi-fi.  The result? No one seems to notice I have a hearing loss.  Or do they?