71 Year Olds

At the nearby park I saw an old guy walking around with his metal detector. He said he finds a few hundred dollars a year and his best year was about $1000. I forget how he segued into talking about his lady friend who is a pyschic and can read minds. Apparently she can also call on the spirits. My question to him was if he believed in her powers.

“Well, some of it seems far-fetched but I know she can read minds because she’s read mine before.”

I wouldn’t have discounted the possibility of her mind reading powers as much if he didn’t tell me the story of how she’s been divorced 3 times. Maybe those men had magnetic shields that blocked her powers.

At the supermarket I was eating my chicken pot pie when an old Asian guy sat by me. He said, “hi” and I asked him if he was on lunch. He wasn’t and said he works graveyards as a janitor. It’s very uncommon to be a 71-year-old Asian born in Canada and even more uncommon to have your even older Asian dad to also be born in Canada. “Your dad must have some stories,” I said. “Yep.”

He basically gave me his life story in the hour that we spoke. He said he’s still working because he’s a typical Western baby boomer who likes to live beyond his means. He also said working is one of his “interests.” I wanted to tell him to f-off. What 71-year-old likes working as a janitor on a graveyard shift? Who knows, maybe he does prefer it. Maybe it’s his way of getting away from his wife — work when she’s sleeping and sleep when she’s awake. He told me I should get a job. I wanted to tell him to f-off again.

“Don’t your folks and friends give you a hard time for not having a job?” he asked.

I don’t even remember what I replied. Surely, it was something cheeky.

He followed with, “yep, when your friends are married they all want you to get married. When they’re having kids they want you to have kids. And down the road if they regret it, it’s too late. They think about divorcing but then they’re reminded of having to divide assets.”

When I was in high school everyone wanted you to wear baggy jeans. After high school there was peer pressure to go to night clubs. When some were spending too much money modifying their cars it influenced everyone else to do the same. This list is endless. It was clearly a total waste of money, time and energy. There are no positive residuals from the foolishness of the past. People laugh and agree but don’t realize that nothing has changed. It just seems real when you’re under the influence. Many lives are a continuous series of acts to merely conform.

I indirectly told him that I thought Canadian baby boomers are assholes because they had it so easy in comparison. He didn’t disagree. They were born right after World War II, lived comfortably working menial jobs and now collect their undeserved pensions which are partly funded by the younger generation. They should be volunteering to help my generation do housework and babysit.

It was an enjoyable conversation. We shared some laughs and agreed on quite a bit. I hope to run in to him in the future.