The same rules apply at any age

Randy Butler Contributing columnist

Randy Butler Contributing columnist

We all know and are familiar with the process. We are born and stay in the kid stage for a very short time. Then we become a young adult, then somehow we go back to being called a kid again when we do not have the right answer. The next step is the one we all want to stay in. It is middle age. I will be 60 here in just a couple months. Can I still claim the middle age title? Probably not since I do know very many 120-year-olds.

It seems like just last week that no matter where I worked, it was me that had the kid label. Being the youngest then did not seem like anything pleasant at all. It kind of made me feel a little less than all the others because of my age. Today, the vote typically goes to me for being the oldest. I must admit it just now occurred to me that I am the oldest at Classic Real Estate. It freaked me out so bad that I had to make sure that was not accurate. Turns out, I am not the oldest. Rick Williams has me beat on that one. It wasn’t even close! Thanks a bunch Rick. You have the medal this time.

How old is old? To me, that question is like another question we all have. How wealthy is wealthy? Wealthy are the people in life that are the next level up from us. No matter how much we have as we go up the wealthy ladder, we never quite make it there. The bar keeps moving up as we do, but wealthy still belongs to the ones at the next level up.

As a small child I remember being upset when my Dad turned 32. I just knew he was not going to last long at that age. When I turned 32, old became 52. When I turned 52, well, it just went higher.

A car, I think, at 25 years old is considered an antique. Milk is about a week and bread is just a few days before it has outlived its usefulness. No one can argue that just about anything has a shelf life. Nothing will last forever.

We all like to hear the response after we tell our age that goes something like this: “You are not. There is no way you are that old. You do not look near that. I would have guessed (something 10 years or so younger).” Even though this makes us feel good about our age, we are still the age we are. That does not change.

I now wear glasses, bifocals even. I did not see that one coming. My hair is getting thin on top — another one that hit me blindly. I look in the mirror each day and say to myself, “that can’t be accurate.” But you know what, it is. Mirrors are pretty good truth tellers.

It seems like every now and then out of the clear blue we get reminded of our age. It comes out of nowhere like a launched scud missile just to darken our day just a bit. This happened to me just last week. I was getting new glasses, yes, my old man bifocals. I struck up a conversation with the young girl giving me the test to see just how much worse my eyes had become. Upon hearing her last name, I realized though I did not know her, I knew the family well. I then proceeded to tell her how I knew her father and told a couple of stories from several years back.

She politely listened and smiled the whole time. We all love to tell the younger generations stories from our youth. It was just as I finished that she launched the scud missile directly hitting my pride. “That’s my grandfather your speaking of, not my father,” she said. I was crushed.

After much thought on how old is old, here is my conclusion. At any age, the same rule applies that we were told as kids and what we also told our kids. We have all heard and said, “act your age.” You will never see me driving a lowrider car with the windows down, the bass blasting and wearing skinny jeans. This is a good thing because if I am honest with myself, I know in my heart no one on earth would want to see that.

Randy Butler is a lifelong resident of Highland County and a licensed real estate agent for Classic Real Estate in Hillsboro.

Randy Butler Contributing columnist Butler Contributing columnist