The age of old

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As we baby boomers age, all sorts of age-related woes interfere with, well, just about everything. 

The things associated with getting older can be annoying, but when you’re trying to work they’re downright maddening. Speaking for myself (but, I suspect, many of you as well), my gripes include:

• Diminished vision – Although I used to have 20/15 vision, I now use three different pairs of glasses; one for the computer, one for general reading, and bifocals for walking around and stuff. I have two pairs of glasses just for the shop; one for general work, and one for close work.

• Allergies – I never had any when I was younger. None. Now, dust from cocobolo and a few other woods make me miserable in the shop.

• Stamina – I didn’t think anything of working 12 hours straight, skipping meals and being on my feet all day when I was younger. Now, breaks are mandatory, meals even more so, and 12-hour days are ancient history.

• General annoyances – The older I get, the more that just about anything can... Hold on a second. Hey, you kids get off my lawn! Dang kids, there oughta be a... Wait, where was I?

Well, I have a new one. While working on a picnic table project for a magazine assignment two months ago I had to do a lot of horsing the heavy assembly around and setting things up for photos and such. In the process, I managed to give myself a hernia.

I’ve had it checked out, and am having a surgery date set to have the thing fixed, but in the meantime doing just about anything in the shop is problematic. I can’t really lift much, I have to be careful pulling and pushing things, and being on my feet for more than an hour or two at a stretch is about the best I can handle without a break.

Getting older is just something we all have to live with, but it certainly can make things more difficult and, at worst, less enjoyable. Still, as the old saying goes it beats the alternative.

On the plus side, though, I still have all my hair.

A.J.

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