I never grew up with elderly people in my life. My maternal grandparents both died before they reached 45 and before my mother was 15. My paternal grandparents died while my dad was in his 20’s. So, I did not grow with grandparents.
But I did grow up with a solid perspective on time and aging. Recently, I was wondering about all the things about me that will change as I get old. What will I be like when I 70?
- What health issues will I have? I have no medical history from my biological parents to inform me of possible problems. But even if I did if might not matter. Cancer killed both my maternal grandparents, but my mom as never suffered from it in 77 years. Will it be my back or my bionic knee. Maybe it will be something organic like my heart, mind or kidneys.
- What will I be afraid of? Driving at night? Those scanners at the airport, that see me naked and store my image in its memory? Some tweaker is going get their meth stained hands on my scan and upload it on the net, I know it! Homeless people? My government? E-banking? Space travel?
- What technology will I not understand and thus no use? Those household robots, maybe? Some day its going to short out and kill me while I sleep. The teleporter? Or maybe those Google glasses thingys? I don’t even wear glasses.
- What will I no longer be able to do? Climb on the roof? Climb trees? Work on my hover craft? Wreslte with my great grand children? Study Shotokan? Move furniture. (Cooking won’t be an issue since the robot will do that.)
- Which of my family or friends will I out live? If I make it to 70 someone has to go before me, right?
- What things about culture and society will I get frustrated with and complain about? Our foreign policy strategy with California? The Mechanized Manual Labor Union pushing for personhood rights of those robots? The country giving up The Stars and Stripes as our National symbol?
- What scams, urban legends and phishing emails will I fall for? Will there still be Ugandan widows with mass fortunes of gold needing an American with the same name as her dead husband to exchange the gold into the currency of the day? How about the one that says the President is a Nephileum? Or that Canada is beefing up its border security by digging a moat?
Now, these up coming issues are not lost on me. I know they are coming. I can see them from here. I will change or better yet “degrade.” So its not a matter of “if”, but “when.” I just hope I am able to survive to what old age brings me.