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Forever Young, Not

By Randall Grantham Community Columnist May 8, 2023

With the lights out, it's less dangerous Here we are now, entertain us I feel stupid and contagious Here we are now, entertain us

A mulatto, an albino, A mosquito, my libido Yeah a denial A denial!

Nirvana-Smells Like Teen Spirit

They say we baby-boomers try to maintain our youth, or the appearance thereof, too long.  Lord knows, I've met some people well into their 60s or 70s who act like they are still in their teens.  You know, bullet-proof and invisible, as we used to say.

And I've had no problem keeping the feeling that my best days are yet to come and that I am young enough to do what I've always done when it comes to diving and biking and boating and hunting and, well you get the message.  I've never felt the "aging" as I've matured.  Our generation didn't have to immediately assume the mantle of responsibility as our parents did and we've grown older but not necessarily up over the years.

Each new music style over the years, although it has continued to change, has never left me with the "How can you listen to that noise?" feeling that many of our parents expressed about the Rock n' Roll and Rhythm n' Blues that we listened to growing up.  Although I won't deny some songs in some new genres have left me feeling a sense of WTF, I've also found something to like in other songs in every new style.

The dress style has also kept me interested.  While different looks come and go, they all seem to go back to the "cultural revolution" of our youths where "anything goes."  Or went.  The looks go from army fatigues to trench coats to hot pants to see through stuff to brightly dyed hair.  All had their roots in the 60's when the hippy free spirits cast aside the homogeny and uniforms of class in appearance.  The  multi-piercings are the only thing that wasn't commonplace back then but those go back even further to a different time AND land.

I've never shaken my head in total disbelief about any of the generational changes in music or dress or behavior  (OK, the  pants riding below your ass-cheeks does have me baffled) and I've always maintained my feeling  that, despite my age, I'm still young-at-heart.

Until now.  Now I know I'm old.

What was it, you ask?  What was the pivotal event that made me realize my age?  Was it an injury?    Was it a lapse in mental cognition?  Was it too hard bending over to tie my shoes?

No, it was No Doubt, the rock n'  roll group I've liked since their inception, the one with Gwen  Stefani, (she was hot 20 years ago)  who also refuses to age. They performed before the an NFL game a while back.  They had it all, wild clothes, weird haircuts, discordant sound.

What was it about them that made me feel old?  Was it their  music?  Their look?

This is when I knew  I was old.  It was the guitarist.  He was jerking about and flailing  his body and head around like a spaz and I found myself asking, out loud, to an empty room, why is that idiot doing that.

Upon hearing those words, I spun around looking for my dad or some other old geezer responsible for that sacrilegious comment, only to realize I was the only one in the house.  Even then, I still thought the guy was acting the fool and that confirmed it, I'm old.

Oh well, where do I go to sign up for bingo games and shuffle board?

(Randall C. Grantham is a fifth generation Floridian and lifelong resident who practices law from his offices on Dale Mabry Highway in Lutz . He can be reached at Copyright RCG)