Wednesday, December 19, 2007

The 5.9 Commandments

When I celebrated my 49th birthday ten years ago, I was anxious to join the 50-something crowd. The already-50-something girlfriends said, “Here's what is great about turning 50, suddenly you won’t take any more crap from anyone.” I wrote in The Gathering Basket, “I’m free of youth,” and celebrated that freedom. I like being in my fifties. I like it so much that next year I think I’ll celebrate my first of many 59-and-holding birthdays.

But should I not be excited about the upcoming golden years? Frankly, I’ve heard one too many goldens say it ain’t so golden. Last night while soaking in the hot tub under the Santa Fe stars an epiphany struck. “And thou shalt live under the 5.9 commandments that I have thus sent to you,” roared a voice in my head.

1. Thou shall not equate 6-0 with old.
2. Thou shall not wear shorts or mini-skirts without lipo.
3. Remember that only your hairdresser knows your real hair color and that all those grey-haired folks among you are older people. Bless them for their bravery.
4. Honor thy goals and forward movements and provide service for those who can’t.
5. You shall find youth’s glory within your soul and grandchildren

And the final commandment was the .9 one, which means it wasn’t complete, but it went something like, “And thou shall seek enrichment from words that you shall…” And the voice faded off into the sparkling bubbles turning to ice when they hit the 20-degree temperature outside of the hot tub.