Forty something

September 12, 2011 at 10:33 pm 8 comments


The tightened belt struggles hard to rein in his ever expanding waistline while the protruding tummy makes him lose his buttons at periodic intervals. The pitch dark hairs are slowly giving way to sparsely spread strands of silver as the once piercing eyesight now demands spectacles to decipher the fine prints.  There is a noticeable lax in the strides which are no longer brisk nor breezy and the snail-paced cruising of the car is a pale shadow of his famed formula styled racing of yesteryears.  A compulsive devourer of anything that is eatable now studies the fat content of the bottled lime water before taking the first sip and also keeps an antacid tablet handy, just in case the citrus juice triggers a bout of acidity in the digestive tract.  And when the “once-upon-a-time”  daring, experimenting and risk-taking individual now craves for stability and shows an overarching desire to maintain the status quo, you bet the guy is now in the forty something years of his earthly existence.

And if the guy is the one who is genetically predisposed to shed his locks early on, a visit to the salon during the forties would prove to be a very exercising and also an expensive experience. With a very limited supply of widely dispersed strands, the barber, nay the hairstylist, would need to deploy all his hairdo skills to reasonably conceal the shining pate and the money the person need to shell out for this delicate job would be inversely proportional to the density of the tuft on his head. And even after all the expertise of the tress were put to lavish use, if he is still dissatisfied to that modicum of a dark cover, he is sure to be gently reminded that one cannot possibly hide an elephant under a mud pot. With the add-on service of a discounted facelift massage that promises to drop years from one’s face, the guy definitely would look poorer, if not younger.

The waning of the youth and the advent of the middle age is announced through well-calibrated indications that start with the subtle whispers of the occasional bodily aches to the more pronounced reflections in the mirror, to the loud proclamations of the younger people around who spot the phenomenon and seldom forget to remind the guy of its vital signs.  Along with exaggerating the mild physical changes that the body display, they also highlight the antique value of his two-year-old mobile, look at his glittering Rolex watch with an archaeological curiosity and keenly study the contours of his well-fitting pants as if it was a costume wear of a period film. For them he is the representative of a bygone era, reminiscent of an age untouched by the liberating influence of Gucci, Messi or 3G.  The guy would be pleased when a teenager, considering his saltish-pepper crown, extends a courtesy to drop him to the nearby store in the bike, but when a stunning beauty in her early twenties, displaying a sizzling figure and a terrific attitude, passes by and wishes him “Nameste Uncle” in reverential tone, his heart bleeds and bleeds profusely.

But he is not the one who would take things lying down and let the world move ahead while he gazes at it like an ancient monument. He picks up the trendiest wears in the town, checks in to the most happening places in the town, checks-out the latest fashion accessories in vogue and chills at the coolest spots. He brushes up his lingo with the latest Facebook idioms, plugs-in to the latest music from the apps store and joins the neighbourhood gym to tuck in the tummy and to tone-up the muscles. He is now seen more often in t-shirts and in skin-hugging jeans and has, of late, acquired an additional bounce to his steps. At forty, the guy has become damn naughty!

But he soon realises that forties is not all about greying hairs and slowing lifestyles. It is also a spectacular reminder of the deepening life experiences and the blossoming of wisdom that accompany it. The bespectacled face symbolizes a keen intellect sharpened by years of scholarly pursuits and each silver hair represents the maturing of the person achieved but only through years of grounding in the university called Life. The treasured old gadgets signifies the value that we need to attach to products that truly serve our purpose and not be carried away by every passing fads while, the balancing and stabilizing approach towards life is an anchor sheet to still life’s occasional tempests.

Forties indeed are the finest years of our lives!

Yours

Narayanan

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Entry filed under: Humour.

Fast, the new fad! Teaching lessons

8 Comments Add your own

  • 1. rekhabaala  |  September 12, 2011 at 10:51 pm

    good one narayanan! though i liked the last paragraph the best. When I was recently bemoaning about touching 40 in a few years’ time, my 20-something colleague, said, ‘Why worry, 40 is the new 20!’ What’s that they say? ‘Ah! Age is just a state of mind!’

    Reply
    • 2. chapter18  |  September 12, 2011 at 10:56 pm

      Thanks Rekha. I welcome you soon to the “forties” club!

      Reply
      • 3. rekhabaala  |  September 12, 2011 at 11:09 pm

        don’t mind turning 40 but with a niece who may get married soon… i may even become a grandmother before I hit the 40s… that’s what worries me. ha! ha! Aunty mat kaho na may turn into ‘Paati Mat Kaho Na’ 🙂 just can’t stop laughing after reading your post!

  • 4. Bea Turvey apprentice author and witch  |  September 14, 2011 at 7:22 pm

    As we nudge closer to the brow of the hill, ready to descend over the other side I like to throw in a wink or two and get my paragliding gear ready. Over the hill? Not bloody likely. The fun isn’t over by any means. I look out through my eyes and in my head I’m still a slim, exciting, limber 20 something – just don’t ask me to stand up too quickly!

    Reply
  • 5. umeshjairam  |  September 14, 2011 at 10:58 pm

    The Malayalam Proverb “Ende Erivathu, Muri Mupathu, Arivu Napathu (Crude translation is What 20, Cutting 30, Knowledge 40). So welcom Nara to the 40-club.

    Reply
    • 6. chapter18  |  September 15, 2011 at 9:50 am

      Thanks Umesh for the wise statement. I am in the forties for some years now….

      Reply
  • 7. Balakrishnan  |  September 15, 2011 at 1:14 am

    You sure have come of age!

    Reply
    • 8. chapter18  |  September 15, 2011 at 9:55 am

      Coming to age is a natural priocess and I will be truly happy when I can say “I have arrived!”

      Reply

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