cool it

I went to a dinner party last night and the conversation was lovely: light and glancing and eclectic .  Couple of thoughts: one friend said she knew an 82-year-old woman who used "cool" as a favourite epithet . She thought that was neat.  Better than "super" I agreed.

I commented on my friend's healthy appetite .  She's a vegetarian and piles her plate with health.  When her plate was taken away I noted that she had eaten the design off the (blank) plate. Another dinner partner commented on that old joke, so old that it's new again. (like me)

That got me to thinking.  We're careful to  change our hair style and to buy new clothes and read current books and do all those things that advertise how  hip we are. Au courant, as they say.  But language and old jokes and expressions can give you away if you're not careful, that is, if you don't want to be given away. ( I wouldn't mind being auctioned off.) 

 Of course, I'm going to give you a couple of examples.  I used to invoke a Certs ad when meeting someone I hadn't seen for years.  The memory of the former, young face has to blend in with the contemporary, older face confronting one.  I think that's why people say "You haven't changed a bit"  as they absorb the two images, past and present, into one.  I used to describe this process as "Two, two, two Certs in one" as per an old commercial.  but that commercial is no longer seen so people don't know what I am talking about.  So I have resorted to, "You haven't changed a bit." 

When chlorophyll was first discovered, not discovered, but when it came to the attention of the general public, products containing chlorophyll were recommended for erasing bad breath.  I used to refer people to goats: "Just think what the goat would smell like if it didn't eat chlorophyll."  No one knows what I'm talking about now.  So I use the method of analogy to apologize for my excess weight (not excessive, but there). I say, "Just think what I'd look like if I didn't attend Weight Watchers."

You had to be there.   

The thing is, I've been there, for so long.