2009.10.07 Is it too late to start lying about my age?

Written by David Green.


By RICH FOLEY

 It’s no surprise to me that I’m single and, lie as I might, not as young as I used to be. Like Kinky Friedman says, I’m too young for Medicare and too old for women to care. But does the media have to keep reminding me (and potential mates) of the disadvantages of aging? I got a double dose of bad news in that area over the weekend.

In an article titled “Yes, men also have biological clocks” in USA Weekend, a prominent urologist probably made sure that few women will ever marry a man past the age of 29. The article started by stating that a man’s fertility level starts dropping after the age of 30.

Even worse, after the age of 40, a man’s offspring supposedly run a higher risk of autism, lower IQ and birth defects. Since my father was 43 when I was born, that would explain my IQ. Everything else I guess I can attribute to undiagnosed birth defects. Joking aside, the article adds that women pregnant by men over 40 also run a higher rate of miscarriage.

That information goes a long way toward making sure I’ll never marry someone thinking about having her own child someday, at least not anyone reading that article. Now if one of those online matchmaker services ran a website specifically for people not planning to have children, maybe I’d have a better opportunity.

Even though I may have a biological clock, I’ve never heard it ticking. Besides, adoption is always an option. But even if I stay single (which is starting to seem more and more likely), that alone could present its own set of problems as I slide further into the abyss of geezerdom. I’ll get back to that in a minute, but first, another rant about AARP....

I’ve complained before about the never-ending stream of letters soliciting my membership in that organization. Chronologically, I may meet the minimum age to join the group, but I just don’t feel nearly that old and refuse to do anything to acknowledge that fact. That’s why I recently passed on attending a high school reunion. Who wants to hang out with those old-looking people who claim I’m their age? What would I do when they start pulling out pictures of their grandchildren?

Just when I’ve learned to accept and quickly dispose of the AARP letters, they apparently bought the mailing list from the mail-order firm that spells my name wrong and refuses to correct it. Now, I get AARP mail in two different names. Maybe I should save them and send them back with a change of address, giving them the mail-order company’s address. Think that would work?

Then there’s the other article I read. This one shares the happy news that single people are at a big disadvantage when it comes to retirement planning. At least I’m in a bigger group here than I would have guessed.

The article said that single people now make up 43 percent of the adult population, compared to just 28 percent 40 years ago. Look out, married people, we’re gaining on you! Nearly half of the total of singles are over 40 years old and 13 million of those have never married. Now there’s a group I’d join—“Too young for AARP, not ready to marry.” That is, if I could afford it.

According to the article, the cost of living for older singles is 40 percent higher than for couples. Those lucky married people get to share expenses, particularly housing costs. And, if something happens to the single person’s income, there isn’t a second one to fall back on.

Plus, long-term care insurance is more important for single people because there may not be anyone else available to take care of them. Luckily, in the case of my demise, I’ve already made arrangements for a friend to adopt my lifelong friend Teddy and all the rest of my stuffed bears, including the laundry basket full of Snuggles. That will be much cheaper than having to provide for children. Just give the bears a hug once in a while and they’re happy.

The article did say that single people can save money by skipping life insurance if they have no children. There’s no need to worry about burial expenses, either. Just put me in the trunk of the Buick and sell it to some unsuspecting out-of-state dealer. I couldn’t do that if I had a wife and kids. And please, no matter what, don’t give the address of my final destination to AARP.

  • Cecil
    THE MAYOR—Cecil Schoonover poses with a collection of garden gnomes that mysteriously arrive and disappear from his property. Along with the gnomes, someone created the sign stating that he is the Mayor of Gnomesville. He hasn’t yet tracked down the people involved in the prank, but he’s having a good time with the mystery.
  • Front.rest
    TAKE A BREAK—Last Wednesday’s session of Stair District Library’s Summer Reading Program ended with a quiet period in a class presented by yoga instructor Melany Gladieux of Toledo. Children learned a variety of yoga poses in the main room at the library, then finished off the session relaxing. Additional photos are on page 7. Area children are invited to visit the library today when the Michigan Science Center presents a flight program at 11 a.m. and roller coasters at 1 p.m.
  • Front.batter
    THE DERBY—Tyler “Smallpox” Flakne of Minnesota’s Home Run League All-Stars goes for the fence Friday night during the National Wiffle League Association’s home run derby in Morenci. This year the wiffleball national tournament moved from Dublin, Ohio, to Morenci’s Wakefield Park. During the derby, competitors had two minutes to hit as many home runs as possible. The winner this year finished with 21. See page 6 and 7 for additional photos.
  • Front.green Screen
    OUT OF THIS WORLD—Elizabeth McFadden and Elise Christle pose in front of the green screen as VolunTeen Noah Gilson makes them appear as though they are standing on the Moon. More photos from the Stair District Library’s NASA @ My Library program are on page 12.
  • Front.snake
    Lannis Smith of the Leslie Science and Nature Center in Ann Arbor shows off a python last week at Stair District Library's Summer Reading Program.
  • Front.fireworks
    FIREWORKS erupt Saturday night over Morenci’s Wakefield Park during the waning hours of the Town and Country Festival. Additional festival photos are inside.
  • Pipeline Spread
    LINED UP—Lengths of pipe were put in place last week along the route of the Rover natural gas pipeline that will stretch from Defiance, Ohio, to Ontario, Canada. Topsoil was removed before the pipes were laid out. The 42-inch diameter pipeline is scheduled for completion in November.
  • Front.rock Study
    ROCKHOUNDS—From the left, Joseph McCullough, Sean Pagett and Jonathan McCullough peer through hand lenses to study rocks. The project is part of Morenci Elementary School’s summer camp that continues into August.

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