How to… be middle aged
Saturday May 5, 2007
Middle age is a lot like the Middle Ages in that no one is terribly interested in it unless you happen to be living in that period. Middle age is when you discover that despite spending 30 years ignoring, refuting and despising everything your parents have ever said and done, you’ve turned into an exact copy of them. You also understand what an appalling pain in the arse you must have been for all those years.
Often, when you arrive at middle age, you realise you have inadvertently crossed the political spectrum. Many young socialist workers end up playing golf with their business buddies, while young fogies find themselves meditating in an ashram somewhere. Political beliefs, like hairstyles, take a long time to change, and many people continue to sport their socialism/mullet long after the rest of their lifestyle has moved on.
Middle age is when you realise that you are what you’re going to be when you grow up. That’s why many people have a mid-life crisis and decide they want to be something completely different. If you plan it just right, you can have your mid-life crisis when your children are having their teenage crises, which makes for interesting mealtimes.
Middle age is when you get the first visible signs of aging, such as a conservatory. The first time you do something to make you appear younger is the first sign that you’re middle-aged. Another visible sign of middle age appears in the middle of your body: it’s called middle-aged spread, which is like chocolate spread in that it is full of fat but not so tasty on bread.
They say 50 is the new 30. Which means that 30 is the new 10. As 10 is the new 18, this actually works out quite well. Seventy is the new 50, while 90 is the new 70. Middle age now starts at the new 60 and finishes at the old 70. If you can’t be bothered to work it out, you’re safely middle-aged.
The great thing about being middle-aged is that you no longer have to be young with all the dressing up, late nights and pretence that entails. Instead, you get comfortable shoes, early nights and feel completely at home with yourself; in other words, it’s when boring becomes exciting.