The Outsider: Party like it’s 1999

They say that you are only as old as you feel and I have no issue with that. The source of my consternation is the time at which I am meant to gauge how I feel, so calculating how old I am. You see, I have a tendency to feel achy and stiff when I get up in the morning, and I feel tired and cranky after a hard day’s work. Hence, I feel old. However, somewhere in the middle of the day I usually feel a million dollars; young, strong, spritely even. I feel like I’m 25, even though this weekend past I had a birthday that put me at exactly twice that age. 

At my birthday party, various folks patted me on the back, and, being concerned about my lengthening years, enquired about my age. 

“What’s it like being an ol’ timer?” 

“Should we get you a cane?”

“Need me to get you a beer, you old B#@$%&*?” 

For the most part, I pretended that my growing age had affected my hearing and I ignored them. But when pressed, I gave the answer that ‘I felt great.’ And I did. 

Actually, as the evening wore on, I felt better and better and by midnight I was cruising along just like when I actually was 25. This being 50 is a breeze, I thought. Big old party, loads of mates, music, bonfire, booze … I’m invincible. I could do this forever. 

Then came the morning after and the afternoon after and now, as I write this, the evening after, during all of which I have felt, how shall I put it? Somewhat under the weather. Terrible, in fact. Hungover from groggy head to achy toe. I feel like what I imagine it feels like to be a hard living 80-year-old. 

You’re as old as you feel, remember … 

T’is as if my mind and body worked together, ganged up on me and made me have a great time at my birthday party, just so that they could let me know what I have down the road if I don’t whoa up and start to look after myself. I can’t imagine feeling like I do at this moment all the time, it would be hell. And so, as of now, I am not touching another drop of alcohol.

Well, er not after I have finished the three bottles of scotch, four bottles of wine and the case of beer that my obviously incredibly cruel friends bought me for my birthday. It would be a shame to waste them, after all. But, after I’ve drank them, I’m all done with the booze, for good. 

Oh, but wait, we have a buddy’s 40th birthday bash coming up soon and that’s gonna’ be one hell of a do. Maybe I’ll see how I feel after that one. Then, if I feel as terrible as I do now, I’ll know that this time was not an anomaly. Wouldn’t want to make a life-changing decision without making that list, and checking it twice would I? 

In the meantime, while convalescing with a can of Coke and a couple of aspirin, I can safely say that I am as old as I feel, or I feel as old as I am. But, ask me again tomorrow at around midday and I’ll probably be feeling 25 again, hopefully, if I’m lucky, please …  

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