Buying Ben Gay by the keg

Published 10:03 am Tuesday, March 13, 2018

It’s a definite sign of reaching that magical age in life.

In a shade over three months, yours truly will celebrate 65 years on Earth. Apparently, each and every company on the planet that offers Medicare supplement insurance is keenly aware of that fact as my cell phone rings 7-to-10 times daily with such offers. What’s scary (other than reaching retirement age) is that these callers know more about me than I know about myself.

However, what they do not understand is the wealth of knowledge I have gained over seven decades of life.

I have noticed that the older I get, the more I hurt in places that I didn’t even know existed. I use to love to go outdoors and work in the yard. Now, just cranking-up the weedeater tires me out and I ache so much after whacking the weeds in the yard that I purchase Ben Gay by the keg rather than a tube.

But all my bones are still there. I can verify that fact by the creaking sound they make every morning when I drag my tired butt out of bed.

Some will say that age is only a state of mind. I guess that’s right. I’m trying to convince my mind that I’m 40 years younger, but my body isn’t buying in to that notion.

Other than smoking too much and consuming way too much caffeine, I’m the perfect picture of health. The only reason I am a picture of health is tied to the fact that I do not look at myself in a mirror. I simply close my eyes and visualize a high school kid in size 26 blue jeans; a tee-shirt that doesn’t stop at my naval and a head full of thick, jet black hair. Reality sets in when I open my eyes and peer towards the floor – ye gads, where are my feet???

But, as I mentioned earlier, with age comes wisdom, even though I can’t remember it all. With that said, here are a few things I’ve learned in nearly 65 years:

There’s more room out than in.

We don’t need Nike to tell us to, “Just Do It.” If something needs to be done, then just do it.

When a woman says no, she means no. When a woman says yes, she means no. When a woman says maybe, she means no.

Here’s what I’ve learned about computers: State-of-the-art means a computer I can’t afford; obsolete means the computer I own; a keyboard is a device used to create computer errors; and a mouse is an advanced device used to make errors easier to generate.

Football is life.

If mama’s not happy, nobody’s happy.

Men do not need to stop and ask for directions when traveling. We always look to our hero – Columbus. He didn’t know where he was heading and things turned out pretty good for him, now didn’t they?

The world’s all-time greatest political structures can be explained using two cows. Socialism is where you have two cows; you keep one and give one to your neighbor. Communism can be explained by having two cows; the government takes them both and provides you with milk. Fascism – you have two cows; the government takes them both and sells you the milk. Bureaucracy is where you have two cows; the government takes them both, shoots one, milks the other, pays you for the milk and then pours it down the drain. Capitalism: you have two cows; you sell one and buy a bull. Democracy is explained by you having two cows. The government taxes you to the point that you must sell them both in order to support a man in a foreign country who has only one cow which was a gift from your government.

The world of business can also be linked to the two-cow theory. You have two cows; in order to cut costs, you get rid of one, force the other to produce the milk of four cows and the boss will then act surprised when it drops dead.

I would share more on my observations of life, but my train of thought was just interrupted by another Medicare supplement insurance sales pitch. See you next week!

Cal Bryant is the Editor of Roanoke-Chowan Publications. Contact him at or 252-332-7207.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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