- CRITTER TALK
- NEWS I FIND INTERESTING
There is an old saying that goes “With age comes wisdom”. Like most old sayings it is, of course, absolute bollocks.
“With age comes confusion” would be a far more apt and accurate saying.
The first time I heard the abbreviation LGBT mentioned, for example, I thought somebody had opened up a fast food joint to rival TGI Fridays or something. On the other hand, I mused, perhaps someone had invented a new cocktail with a Gin base? Anyway, eventually, I gathered it meant Lesbian, Gay, Bi, and Transgender.
Mind you, even when I realized this I remained, initially, bemused. Transgender? What the hell did that mean?
Clearly, over time, I discovered what it meant albeit I am still slightly bemused by it, although sympathetic to those in that category.
When I was a child change didn’t bother me mainly because I didn’t even know it existed. Everything was normal – well, apart from Brussels sprouts obviously.
As a teenager, as we all did, I developed the ability to be critical. How could my pals sister not see that David Cassidy was not on the same musical planet as David Bowie?
That’s the thing when you are young. You form an opinion and, clearly, it is the right one. ‘Old’ people haven’t a clue. They are living in the past, at least mentally. Perhaps there is some truth in that I suppose.
My Grandad lived through two world wars. His generation was almost always subservient to authority. Politicians, wealthy people, company managers. Anyone in authority had to be respected and obeyed. He was extremely discombobulated by my rebellious tendencies and never could understand my determination to disobey school teachers or, later on, tell managers what I thought of them.
I am beginning to understand his bewilderment I think.
When the gay community took the word ‘gay’ to replace homosexual I understood. They needed some good PR. Older people – well, not the gay ones obviously – still thought of homosexuals as perverts. After all, it hadn’t even been legal until fairly recently at the time.
Being young I completely understood and sang along happily to Tom Robinsons ‘Glad to be Gay’ hit record, banned by the BBC, regardless of being staunchly heterosexual myself.
I was young. I got it.
Now I am my Grandad. I am often bewildered and discombobulated by the change.
If the internet was only just starting up I would not have a clue and, probably, it would frighten me a bit. As it is I am often alarmed by the speed of advance of technology. I am now firmly in the category of ‘old people who haven’t a clue’. Not that I am necessarily old by today’s standards of course. I am younger than my mother obviously. Otherwise, it would be just weird.
Some of us reach an age when we prefer the status quo. Not the band, good as they were, I hasten to add. We prefer things to be as we know them. It feels comfortable. We don’t like change for change’s sake, albeit it may only be our opinion that some change or other is for change’s sake.
We feel confused when we say things in innocence and are condemned, usually by young people although not exclusively, as being racist or phobic or just plain dumb. Some old people undoubtedly are one of the aforementioned or even all three, but many of us are merely confused why our world is changing so quickly.
Here I am assuming that I am not dumb nor any of the above. No doubt I will discover otherwise 😉
One change that has absolutely shocked me is that, apparently, young people – I always assume surveys regarding young people mean people under 30 but, at my age, that sounds terrifyingly young now – more and more of them are tea total. Yes. It’s true. Not necessarily that they are all addicted to tea but, more startlingly, they are foregoing the pleasures of alcohol.
It’s bad enough that smokers like me are often shunned and banned from pretty much everywhere but what next? When these young people, or some of them at any rate, become our leaders will they ban beer?
I think I have suddenly realized why so many old people are not afraid of death. Who the hell wants to live in a world run by young people banning beer?
They just might you know. When we go out for a meal with my daughter and her partner she frowns at me when I order another beer. I mean to say, it’s only my third or fourth! Well, possibly fifth or – oh all right, I’ll have a coffee then.
Obviously, there are more serious changes that have happened and, probably, will happen than smoking bans and potential beer consumption restrictions but, if I dwell on serious issues here I may need a beer and, so early in the day, I would get frowned at again.
Multiculturalism, a female Doctor Who (good as she is), pubs closing down all over the place, political correctness, the onward expansion of the EU, Oldham Athletic getting relegated, Muslim sex gangs preying on vulnerable young white girls, anti-Semitism returning, millions dying for want of food and healthcare – oh, yes, that isn’t a change is it? Well, you get my drift?
The world is changing rapidly. Britain is changing rapidly. My street is changing rapidly.
I don’t like it. I increasingly like the status quo – including the band.
Bugger this. I’m off to LGBT for a burger and chips.
In Case You Missed It: In Britain, It’s All About Trump, Diplomacy, and Brexit