The lighter side of senior life

I once had an idea for a TV show that would be a senior counterpart to the Kulit Bulilit type of laff in. I pitched the idea to some producers but everyone politely declined the idea. I said 10 million captive seniors would love it. No dice. I persisted: everyone in the household would tune in. Still no dice.

Seriously, why not? Sure, senior life is all about aches, pains, pills, problem knees, and all that. Each passing year brings a few more wrinkles, creaks and groans. But there’s another way of looking at it. If you ask me, getting older also brings the funny.

Ecclesiastes says there’s a time for everything. A time to sow, a time to reap. Being 60 or 70 is a time to laugh. After all, “I’ve paid my dues!” “I’ve raised my kids.” “Now I want to have fun.” Aging should include a sense of humor!

Here are some of the vignettes I was thinking for that show.

The case of the memory booster

I have a confrere who is of my age and in one of our periodic rendezvous at an old mami house in Quiapo, he couldn’t wait to talk about a new medicine that his neurologist prescribed for his frequent forgetfulness. “It really improves your memory and sharpens your thinking,” he gushed. Giving him the benefit of the doubt, I said I will try it. When I asked the brand name of the medicine, he suddenly became silent, probably rummaging through his memory. He spent the next hour trying to recall the name, unable to relish the steaming hot noodle soup on our table.

Speaking of being forgetful, there’s this elderly couple having dinner at another couple’s house, and after eating, the wives left the table and went to the kitchen. The two husbands are talking, and one says, “Last night we went out to a new restaurant and it was really great. I would recommend it very highly.”

The other man asked, “What is the name of the restaurant?”

The first man thinks and thinks and finally asks, “What is the name of that flower you give to someone you love? You know…the one that’s red and has thorns.”

‘Do you mean a rose?’

“Yes, that’s the one,” replied the man. He then turns toward the kitchen and yells, “Rose, what’s the name of that restaurant we went to last night?”

One time the wife goes shopping and asks the husband what he likes her to buy for him. The husband mentions a couple of items and tells the wife to write it down. Wife insists no need, she would remember them. When she comes back, the husband asks if she bought the things he wanted her to buy and she says “I forgot.” She asks, why what did you want me to buy. Husband looks at her with a vacant stare. “Oh, I forgot.”

Never too old

IN our group of seniors, there’s one who has a child who is still in the elementary and we were wondering how he managed to sire a child at this late stage. It turned out, the said son was born out of his indiscretion. But he assured us that he has made his peace with his wife and members of his family and the child has been accepted as part of the family. With a twinkle, he said: it was a “sperm of the moment.”

Hearing problem

The housewife who lives next door has an acute hearing condition when it comes to the noise of her neighbors. When the dogs bark, she makes a case out of it, when the volume of the music is turned a little loud, expect her to knock on your door and confront you, with a voice turned to maximum volume. But lo, when a bill collector or donation solicitor calls, she doesn’t seem to hear the loud knocking on her gate. She obviously suffers from a selective hearing condition.

You got a hit

A composer of well-loved songs was feted on his 84th  birthday. Invited was an up-coming new pianist-composer, who agreed to play impromptu some of his songs for the birthday honoree. After being applauded by the appreciative audience, the young hit maker sat down for dinner beside the old hit maker, who felicitously congratulated the younger composer and whispered: “Hey, I love your new songs. I think you got some hits there.” In the course of the evening, the highly flattered young man found out that the senile birthday celebrant was completely deaf.

God provides

Because of the difficult economy, a retired senior has a hard time juggling bill payments. At the end of the month he realizes that most of his pension goes to pay for his medicines and utility bills. Being a deeply religious man, he believes that God would take care of his financial needs.  With admirable equanimity he tells us: When the debt collector comes knocking, all I have to do is to pray. And sure enough money comes just in time. “Then, looking up with grateful eyes, he raises his two hands and proclaims: “Pays the Lord!”


Two 70-year-old friends were talking about people they know fading out one by one. One of them suddenly said, “You know Mae West?” “Sure,” she was a Hollywood sex goddess. Why?

She said something in one of her movies and promise me, when I die, and because I know  I will go first,  I want that to be my epitaph on my grave stone. “Why,” his curious friend asked, “what did she say?” He wrote it down on a piece of paper. Then he handed it over to his friend. “Here, promise me you’ll keep it and get it engraved.” The note read: “Come up above and see me sometime.”

Fitness gym

Listen to a senior woman: “I feel like my body has gotten totally out of shape, so I got my doctor’s permission to join a fitness club and start exercising. I decided to take an aerobics class for seniors. I bent, twisted, gyrated, jumped up and down, and perspired for an hour. But, by the time I got my leotards on, the class was over.” Getting older gives a whole new meaning to the rock and roll hit “twist and shout.”

Yes, with all the body aches, bouts of depression, and all that, there’s a funny side to growing old. Sure, many times, it hurts when we laugh. But if we can’t laugh at ourselves, then we’ve learned nothing from experience.

Remember: You don’t stop laughing because you grow old, you grow old because you stop laughing or being funny.

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