Jim Terry
Am I old, or what?
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By Jim Terry
October 6, 2020

“How old would you be if you don’t know how old you are?”— Satchel Paige

I ran across a post on Facebook the other day which read:

    One way to find out if you are old is to fall down in front of a lot of people. If they laugh, you’re still young. If they panic and start running to you, you’re old.

This reminded me of an incident that occurred several years ago when my dear mother-in-law, a stroke victim, was a resident in a nursing home in East Texas. My wife and I traveled there at least once a week and spent part of the day with her. We usually left our home about 8:30 a.m., for it was at least a two hour drive, which meant we would be on the road for about four to five hours. They were long days.

Once, when we were there for the weekly visit, we arrived late morning, about 11:00. As our routine usually went, we sat with her for a while in her room and then took her to the home’s dining hall around noon. Getting out of Dallas, Texas at rush hour is often a challenge, and on this particular day I was tired from the drive. When we settled Mom at her table, I told Wife I was going out to the car and rest and would return when Mom went back to her room.

The day was a warm autumn day, with a comfortable breeze from the south. I got in my car and turned on the radio, lowered the seat back, rolled up a jacket for a pillow, and laid back my head. Soon, I nodded off to sleep.

As I drove up to my girl friend’s house to take her to the high school dance, my dream was interrupted by a woman yelling and banging on my door. "Are you all right, sir? Are you ok? Hello.” The suddenness of her banging and shouting startled me; my heart began to race and I could feel heavy thuds in my chest.

“I was worried you may have had a stroke or something," the woman continued as she pounded on the car.

When I recovered my senses, I assured her that I was fine and that she need not call paramedics; that I was not a resident of the nursing home; that I was just there visiting from out of town (a long way out of town); and that I was resting up for my return drive home. When we arrived home that evening, my bed seemed more comfortable than usual, and I enjoyed that rest much earlier than usual.

I suppose a moral of this story is: if you have gray hair, don't nap in your car in the parking lot of a nursing home. You may find yourself hauled off to the ER of the local hospital while trying to explain that you were just resting.

As I recall those visits with Mom in the nursing home, I think of all the lonely people today who suffer alone in nursing homes across the country, separated from family because of a plague loosed on the world by Communist China, and the government officials who claim their power and authority under the premise that their election gave them godlike qualities; that they know more about what’s best for us than we know what’s best for us.

We can call this attitude by politicians fascism, totalitarianism, extremism, tyranny, elitism or stupidity. If we choose to call it stupidity, we must acknowledge that the stupidity lies not only with the politicians, it also lies with the voters who have allowed the politicians to usurp the power from the people.

© Jim Terry

 

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Jim Terry

Jim Terry has worked in Republican grassroots politics for 40 years. Terry was an administrative assistant to a Republican elected official in Dallas for twenty years. In 1996, he ran for and was elected to Justice Court 2 in Dallas County where he served eight years. Contact Jim at tr4guy62@yahoo.com

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