Monday, September 21, 2015

Getting Too Old

It's worse than a hangover.

With a hangover, my brain hurts and I feel dehydrated. With a hangover, I take a couple of ibuprofen tablets, drink a big glass of fruit juice and even more water, suck it up, and get on with my day.

I haven't experienced a hangover in a while because, while I may drink often, I don't drink a lot. These days, I'm not drinking at all.

But when the body wears out and fails you, there's nothing you can do except rest and take it easy.

This weekend, my wife and I attended a fund raiser that had us dressing up like it was the 80s and dancing to music from the 70s, 80s, and early 90s. The event raised almost $4,000 for the School Breakfast Program, which gives nourishing morning meals to kids who might otherwise have nothing in their bellies at the beginning of the day.

Good cause, successful achievement, great party.

My wife and I met up with our good friends, Bee and Marc, and we all dressed for the event. Marc dressed fittingly as John Bender, the "criminal" from The Breakfast Club; Bee dressed as she had in that era, ready to attend a Ramones show at CBGB's. Lori donned leg warmers, curled her hair and covered it in spray, added a hat and an 80s-style jacket (though it was severely lacking in shoulder pads). I wore a wig that was fitting for an 80s rock band (and added black eye liner for effect), dug out one of my actual jackets that I bought sometime in the 80s (complete with shoulder pads and turned-up lapels), white t-shirt, jeans, and white sneakers with the tongues turned up.

When I actually lived in the 80s, as a teen, I never dressed up like that. Of all the styles my hair has seen, big 80s hair was never it. I wore sweaters most of the time, and my colours of choice were often grey and black. Not Goth, but black jeans and a grey sweater was an outfit you were likely to see me in.

We danced to Simple Minds, Depeche Mode, Quiet Riot, M.C. Hammer, Bowie, and of course, the final song of the night was "Stairway to Heaven," though we left before the end of the dance. Because, though we danced like it was the 80s, my body succumbed to the 50s.

I did all the moves from when I was in high school, and I did them for about as long as I did them when I was at school dances, longer than I did when I went to clubs in Hull with my friends. When I was in my late teens and 20s, I could dance for a very long time. This weekend, I held out as long but when my body finally had enough, it had more than enough.

I overheated and had to take the wig and jacket off. And then, when I sat down to rest my feet, atrophy set in as my osteoarthritis took over. I could barely walk, let alone dance. As soon as I got home, I sank my feet in a bucket of ice water, and then into a hot tub. Lori massaged my feet and calves as I downed three ALEVE® tablets. I fell asleep with shooting pains that travelled the length of my legs.

I also slept until 10:30 the next morning.

For most of the next day, I was stiff and sore, and groggy. I napped in the afternoon. I did few chores around the house, making sure not to add to my pain. I walked around the house like a 90-year-old man.

Last night, as I typed these words, I was still tired and a little sore.

It was nice to relive my youth, but I'm too old to maintain it.

Would I do it again?


But next time, I'm leaving the hair behind, trading the wig for a good drink. At least that way, I can try to blame my pain on the booze.

I'm pretty sure ladies didn't keep cell phones in their back pockets in those days.

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