Saturday, February 23, 2013

Our Lives Are So Complicated!

     Okay, we all know that the economy is going to hell in a handbasket. But I need to talk about something more serious, something that affects our lives every single day.

     I'm talking about how complicated our world has become, now that we're older and weighed down with responsibilities as well as all the encumbrances of modern technology.

     When I was younger, and I wanted to go outside, I just went out the door. Sometimes I paused to put my shoes on. But lots of times, not even that.

     Now when I want to go out the door, there's a whole process I have to go through -- a checklist that would put a space shuttle launch to shame. I have to find my car keys, and my wallet. I need my cellphone. And my glasses. Not those. Those are my reading glasses. I need my distance glasses. Oh, and do I know where I'm going? Do I need to borrow B's GPS?

     And I certainly can't go barefoot anymore. With my sore feet, I need socks and lace-up shoes, complete with the insert that's supposed to help my bad knee.

     So that's leaving the house. But even when I'm at home, life is more difficult. I used to eat anything that was in the refrigerator. But my stomach has become a little more sensitive with age. Can't handle those rich foods. Oh, and don't eat anything with too much salt -- don't want to develop high blood pressure. I have to rummage around the refrigerator for 15 minutes just to locate some small morsel of edible snack to stave off starvation for another couple of hours.

     How about watching TV? I used to ... turn on the TV. Now we have four remote controls, all of which have to be manipulated in just the right sequence, depending on whether we're watching regular TV, or HD TV, or Netflix, or an archived show from Free on Demand. And if one of the kids has been visiting, and switched everything over so they can play a computer game, then ... well, then, we don't know what to do, and we have to call one of the kids to talk us through it.

     But the worst is ... going to bed.

     I used to brush my teeth (on a good day) -- then just fall into bed.

     Now the evening ritual starts at least an hour before I actually go to sleep. We walk the dog. Shut down the computer. Find my book, and my reading glasses. Then go upstairs where I pick up the room humidifier, take it to the bathroom, fill it up with water, bring it back and turn it on. Then I go in the bathroom again. Brush my teeth. Floss. Use the special 50+ mouthwash that's supposed to protect my gums and my tooth enamel. Put on my pajamas (I used to sleep in my underwear, but jeez, it's just too cold for that in the winter.) Set the alarm clock. Then wrap my elbow with the elbow brace that's supposed to help my carpal tunnel syndrome. Then lather on some moisturizer so my fingers don't split in the dry air. And finally -- whew! -- I rest my weary head upon my special pillow that's supposed to protect me from neck pain.

     Am I crazy? Well, if I am, B's even crazier, because her daily rituals are even more time-consuming than mine. No wonder why we have to retire. It's a full-time job just to get up in the morning, find something to eat, and get ready for bed at night!


schmidleysscribblins, said...

After my nighttime ritual where I brush my teeth twice (dental orders, second one is floride and not rinsed out), take my 8 medicines, wash and then rub my face, hands and other body parts with one lotion, cream or another, to say nothing of the medicinal oinments, I feel like Rodney Dangerfield's wife.

You might recall Rodney had a joke routine where he said, My wife uses so much cream at night, after finishes preparing for bed she gets in and slides right out again.

Showers when I wash my hair are even worse. Dianne

PS Good post about complexity of modern life. Can you help me with my cell phone?

Douglas said...

I cannot think of a more well-written piece on the subject. We all miss our childhoods don't we?
I don't have a dog so that's not part of my evening ritual though the rest are pretty much the same for me. Wait till you add "taking false teeth out and soaking them" which adds to the going out routine... "make sure teeth are in."
I leave my cellphone in my car where it sits in the console turned off most of the time. I dumped my wallet in favor of money clips years ago (always hated the wallet...), only need reading glasses (and keep a spare set in both cars) and no longer care all that much about where I am going or already know how to get there.

I am all about simplicity. Only one remote for the TV and one for the Blu-Ray player (rarely used).

Heidrun Khokhar, KleinsteMotte said...

I was surprised that there was no code to remember to open your front door! Those are so annoying .
We bought a remote with a visual display that can be used to put all of the remotes onto one! Thank goodness fro that Buddy would not be happy if it was 4 remotes tp fiddle with.
For split skin try taking a zinc supplement.

Retired Syd said...

My only question is why are you setting the alarm clock? You're retired!

Retired Syd said...

P.S. I don't even try to watch TV when Doug is gone. It's just too hard.

Stephen Hayes said...

Your post is spot on. Mrs. C. gets into bed a half hour before me and she's long gone by the time I finish all my ablutions and crawl into bed. Had it been this way in our earlier years we'd probably be a childless couple.

Rose ~ from Oz said...

Hahaha Tom, what a brilliant read over my Sunday morning cuppa, had to find the reading glasses first. Of course, any one pair of the 6 scattered around the house would do.

Dick Klade said...

Was going to write a brilliant comment about this entertaining post, but I got grew so tired following details of your bedtime ritual that I just went off to . . .

Linda Myers said...

Ah, yes, those rituals!

Add to the one at bedtime: take evening supplements, put in night guard, fill CPAP reservoir, put on CPAP mask.

Arkansas Patti said...

Well done. Age really shoots spontaneity in the knee caps doesn't it. Had to laugh also at Stephen's observation.

Warren Lieberman said...

KISS. Skip the 50+mouth wash, just an advertising gimic. Drop one useless activity per week.

Bob Lowry said...

Add set up the coffee maker for the next morning to my list. Otherwise, we are very close!

Don QuiScottie said...

You fill and switch on a humidifier?

I empty and switch on a dehumidifier.

Perhaps we should meet somewhere in the middle :)

Knatolee said...

All these gadgets and things are supposed to make our lives easier, but I have my doubts! Technology can be overwhelming.