The Five Ages of Man

This week’s Friday Five question comes courtesy of Nanette:

I work in the music business. Glamorous as this may sound, we are actually just two women in a home office in South Austin. Hipness, youth and cool factor are a common topic of conversation between me and my boss, I’m 35 and she’s 39. We often reminisce about our cool groovy old days when we actually went out to see the kind of bands we work with and go to the clubs we talk to everyday and it dawns on us that we are sooo way out of the cool scenes we envision ourselves part of still.

Soooo, the topic is – what 5 ages would you like to be and why?—either to re-live or that you imagine would be ideal in the future. Hey, if you are so inclined and have a moment to spare, what about throwing in 5 ages you would NEVER want to be again, and why…

Wow. I have to say it’s funny… the five ages of man. That’s Hesoid, no? Okay, I’ll admit, I cheated. But anyway, I’ll answer the two questions here:

What ages would you like to be and why?

  1. 19. Because I felt young, I felt like my life held all kinds of promise, which of course it still perhaps does. But back then I could literally feel it within me, all that potential for all kinds of things. Also, this would have been a good time to start regular exercise.
  2. 500. Because, dammit, I want to be able to live that long if I so choose. We need to develop the technology so that is possible.
  3. 21. Because I made a number of mistakes in that year, which I don’t even want to talk about, except to say that I’d rather have chosen a different path and would totally, without regret, change that year in a second.
  4. 10. Because this time around I would have insisted on learning karate and would have beat the snot out of all those older, bigger kids who ganged up on me.
  5. 50. Just for a day. To see what it’s like in a body like that. I think it would be a strong impetus for me to follow my swimming practice schedule.

What ages would you not like to be again and why?

  1. 19. Because everyone but me seemed to be having fun, and I was so busy focusing on those great things I wanted to achieve. Which were all musical, goals none of which mean anything to me anymore.
  2. 500. Because I can see life having lost some important part of its meaning once you get that old.
  3. 21. Because it’d probably be like in Vonnegut’s novel Timequake and I’d just be watching myself make a fatal, horrible decision that would change my whole life.
  4. 10. Because when you are that old you’re old enough to understand that the world can be really hard and nasty, but too young to understand that it’snot your fault.
  5. 50. Not even for a day. Because it would be damned scary.

I am assuming of course that this being a different age would including going to where you were that age (or where one imagines one might be in the future at that age). If this assumption is incorrect, and you could be a different age in the present and where you are, I think I would choose a little differently.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *