Coping: Is 80 Really “Old”?

I got one heck of a kick out of the reader comments in response to my recent notes on “Moving when you’re old…”

At 65 – and 66 within a few months – I’m just trying to keep ahead of the Game of Life a bit.  Admittedly, though, I often move 10-years early on most things…

As I read “Moving when you’re older” I had a good laugh as I noted it seems you think 80 is really really old and no one needs fancy tools and equipment because at 80 they are so far gone they can’t use them.
That IS true in some cases.  Not in mine.
I am 80.  I grew up on healthy home grown veggies and foods (organic too even at that early time).  I was raised on raw Jersey Cow milk so rich it had 6 inches of yellow cream on the top in the big bottles that came from Dad’s patients who were dairy farmers.  Dad was Chiropractor who did a lot of nutrition counseling so I had real natural vitamins at every meal and real bread Lima bean, Whole Wheat, Soybean from a specialty bakery in S Calif back when S Calif was paradise.
So my body is in good shape, I take two pharmaceuticals.  One for heart rhythm, one for pain of a back injury.  Not 10 or 15 or more like most old folks who ate crap food, did not exercise, never touched supplements. Drank and smoked. Surprise, they burned out their  bodies.  So at older age they get exactly what they deserve.
People who don’t know me take me to be 60 to 65.
So if I had a shop full of high end equipment I would be using it for quite a long time from now. 
And oh yes, I climb my own towers still, have a nice belt and harness.
So age depends on how you take care of your machine, not on some numbers.

LOL, totally true.

It is maybe – as much as anything – getting off sugar at an early age (and quitting smoking) that keep[s the age off.  That, some exercise and the right nutritional products.

Elaine and I are usually taken for 10-15 years younger than we are.  E’s age is classified but let’s just say she’s already crossed an official finishing line – and looks to be lying by 20 years about it.

I’ve told her to write a book about how she did it…working out, kettle bells, free weights, and stretches and so forth.  When she walks in a room most men think “Ah, had some body work…” but no, just staying fit.  Seriously fit, active, and 8 hours of solid sleep. Vitamins, no sugar…the healthy path.

Another hint?  Never go to bed mad – about anything.  Stress is terrible – stress kills both directly and by driving you to other bad habits like booze in excess and so on…

Moving/Full-time Renaissance Festivals?

A reader out in Hawaii chimes in…

Pardon me, George, but listening to you complain about ‘moving’ a month’s worth of travel gear to a second floor tells me…  “You’re a Wimp!”

Three years ago, when I was a young and spry 58 years old, I decided that moving just across the street was no big deal.  Wrong!  It’s STILL a ‘move’, and that’s when you find out you have way too much ‘stuff’.  Dumped a full 1/3 of my ‘accrued mass’ and moved into what I thought was a better, bigger apartment that allowed ham radio antennas!  Living on a steep hillside as I do, it still involved taking furniture down the driveway more that a full story, across, and back up a flight of steps to the new ‘ground floor’ across the street.

Fast forward three years.  My landlord sells out and the new owner wants to reconstruct the whole building.  I have a ‘breakable’ lease extension to December, but began looking for a new place immediately.  It takes time in this town.  Last week I finally found something in the lower end of rents here.  I’m going from $925/mo to $1400/mo for a slightly larger place… three blocks down the hill and still on the hillside.  Parking on the ground floor, and I’m on the second floor above.   So now I’m cleaning, painting, fixing, and starting to move the accrued crap of a lifetime yet again… only now I’m 61 and getting damn tired of all this crap!  Only got 30 days to move, not enough time to advance plan dumping a lot of stuff, but I swear… when I’m resettled there’s gonna be a thrift sale… and craigslist… and ebay… and stuff is gonna GO!

With any luck, I can finish out my working career in this apartment… nine years to go.  When I have maximized my Social Security payout, I plan to retire to the small-town life in Hilo… just me and my ham radios… and finally have the time and quiet environment to work some HF DX before the big sleep.

So you’re complaining about toting ONE carload up to the second floor!  HAH!  I’m doing twice that every day for the next couple weeks… after working a full 8 hours at my ‘day job’.    I’m also having a bowl full of anti-inflammatory pills for breakfast and dinner every day.  I’m also losing weight, and my doctor is sure to be pleased at how low my triglycerides are at the next checkup.

All in all, I am pleased that I found a place at all in this town, and had the money and budget to accomplish it.  I pity my neighbor who lives on the second floor in the old place.  He’s lived there 32 years, and is a retired Vietnamese cab driver on Social Security.  He also shares a place with his brother who speaks no english and works minimally at a T-shirt silk-screener factory.  Since I gave my 30 days notice, the landlady gave them a 45 day eviction notice as she wants to get busy with the reconstruction of the building half that we live in.   He can find affordable places to rent in the $1100 to $1200 range, but cannot pass the ‘screening’ hurdles the rental agents use now.   Good credit scores and a bunch of money for security deposit and first month rental.  I pity him… and fear they will end up homeless and living out of their cars on the street.  Rents in Honolulu have far, far outpaced low to moderate income people here.

So enjoy your vacation!  And remember that it could always be worse…. in a place some call ‘paradise’ !

Seems I remember there’s a big homeless camp on Hawaii – at least it showed up that way in an episode of Hawaii Five-Oh (the remake).  (Terrible source for an impression in passing…)

Be thinking – on matters of public policy – if government might not be doing itself a favor (since they haven’t been able to create or preserve enough jobs for all at presently levels of consumption) by setting up full-time tent cities for all homeless who wish to go there.

Public policy in the past has made such places disagreeable just in terms of marketing.  Everyone remembers the Hoovervilles, the Bush Camps in Washington, and so forth.

They served an important purpose at a time when the federal government wasn’t being as generous as it is today.

What would happen if government set up a large section of each city where people really could “self-organize” in the way that people did in times of yore?

You would no doubt have some entrepreneurial types who would figure out how to set up bakeries, cooking, arts, and so forth.  And if everyone going there was handed a cheap cell phone and charger so they would still have access to the net for things like job search, it might be an interesting place.

Of course government can’t keep its mits off, but if it could, people might relearn some of the benefits of hard work and working together on the “outside” of the homeless camps.  They have been ebbing and flowing in many cities, but if there were more official recognition of the post financial apocalypse lifestyle now, these might be the social pioneers that clear the way for the rest of us – should  the crap really hit the fan.  Just thinking, mind you.

What’s Up with Dallas?

The Big D has been showing up in all kinds of data out of the National Dream Center and as a consequence, we are worried about what’s coming in that part of the country.  No telling when but a six or seven week timeline is typical, but often closer in when things begin to cluster.

So if you have dreams involving Dallas, head over to and look around if you’re not following their prophetic dream content research.

The Daily De-Motivator

One other note I forgot to mention in the housing/last-ever move before going to “underground housing” section:

After reading your column today, my thoughts turned to the Zero Hedge sub-heading:
“On a long enough time line the survival rate for everyone drops to zero”.
Something to long forward to; when we hit a certain age we don’t have to worry so about survival, because you ain’t gonna… survive that is.
Thanks for that George. I feel much better now.

Uh…glad to help!

I’ve brought along the DSM-5 Essentials: The Savvy Clinician’s Guide to the Changes in Criteria for my little sister to read. and I posed the question in Peoplenomics yesterday:  If you look at the whole world as an insane asylum, is there any chance that an asylum with 7-billion people will be able to become fully functioning humans?

Not to toss out an early morning bummer, but somehow, I think not.  At best, you’d get a personality type best-suited for leading other lunatics around.  That’s not so bad if you’re a rich phat cat running for office or ruling the billions (dollars and people).

But if you consider yourself a semi-normal person who was born on this planet by mistake, then it becomes a very interesting problem:  What is the statistical curve that best profiles  the likely mental health outcome of the world as now organized?

Tests in Ferguson, Washington, Yemen, ISIS lands, and EU headquarters in Belgium might be interesting test test results.

But, of course, such studies will never be done.

We lie the loudest when we lie to ourselves.”  said philosopher/longshoreman Eric Hoffer, another sane man stuck in this here asylum.

Write when you break-even