(End of) life hacks: Tips for the young geezer

Gene Weingarten on

WASHINGTON -- The other day, I had a tooth pulled. The dentist was skilled, and the extraction was almost pain-free, but the experience was not entirely pleasant. The bad tooth proved obstinate, and the dentist had to bear down. At one point my head was whipped back and forth like a mafia stoolie being slapped silly by his don. I imagine similar kinetics occurred circa 1889 in dentists' chairs in Tombstone, Arizona, out around back near the brothels and blacksmith shop, where screaming was drowned out by the clang of iron and gunfights over wimmin.

Losing part of one's skeleton in such a dramatic manner caused me to contemplate mortality, which caused me to consider how my experiences at this end of life might benefit you, the younger reader.

Tips for coping with old age:

Don't ever look up a recent photograph of your high school flame. Even more important, pray that he or she never looks you up.

Don't ever look at your skin with a magnifying glass.

Don't ever allow yourself to wonder, even for an instant, whether a good poop is better than good sex.


Do not ever calculate your molar-to-crown ratio.

Cross "sleep with Sophia Loren" off your bucket list. Even at 84, she's still way out of your league.

Don't come straggling into the office one morning muttering, "First, gout. Now ague, biliousness, lumbago, Saint Vitus's dance and dropsy. What's next, apoplexy?"

Don't lift with your back. Or your legs, for that matter. Lift with some danged pulley system involving fulcrums and levers and inclined planes, or, better yet, just hire some dumb lunk.


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