Insulting phrases

Published 11:00 pm Friday, July 26, 2013

“At your age” is a prepositional phrase.

It’s also an insult.

“At your age, you can expect to have some aches and pains.”

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“At your age, there are just some things that your body can’t tolerate.”

“At your age, you might want to consider bifocals.”

“At your age, you should eat more fiber.”

“At your age, support hose would be helpful.”

“At your age you can expect to have some degree of hearing loss.”

One insult after another.

The gentleman representative of the funeral home didn’t say “at your age” but it was certainly implied. Pre-need is a tactful way to say “at your age.” It’s also a clever way to dance around pre-paid.

But, no, I was not in the market for a coffin.

Not at this time.

My tone was not pleasant but “at my age” I can speak to people like that.

However, later I got to thinking about something that happened to my friend Bannie, when she got a little too haughty.

The preacher’s wife was what might be called a hypochondriac. If she didn’t have one ailment, she had two or three. Her favorite book was the medical journal and she had it in hardback.

One Sunday when she completed her lengthy monologue of maladies for the day, Bannie quipped, “Well, I enjoy good health.”

That very week, Bannie came down with a bad case of flu – fever, chills, coughing, sneezing, muscle aches, headaches, sore throat, swollen glands – the whole gamut. She thought she was going to roll over and die.

It took two weeks before she was on the mends. However, she was still “as weak as water” and her appetite hadn’t come back. “Couldn’t taste a thing.”

Finally, Bannie overed the worst case of flu anybody had ever had. But before she could again fully enjoy good health, she relapsed.

Back on her sickbed, Bannie vowed off of haughtiness for the rest of her days.

With that thought in mind, I picked up the phone because, well, “at my age…”

The pre-need plan was probably a good idea I told the gentleman, but, no, I wasn’t interested in a casket with satin sheets and a satin pillow. I wouldn’t need that.

Music? Caskets come with music? A little John Denver would be nice. What was I thinking!

Nothing fancy for me. A plain, wood coffin would do. A graveside service. A few select scriptures. The Benton Brothers to sing. That was it.

I was briefed on pre-need payment options.

Dang, my age … I went with the 20-year plan.