As those of you at this stage in your life will know; sometimes the mind is willing but the flesh is weak.
Anyway Hilary Rose in the Times says these are 10 things you shouldn’t be doing in midlife:
- Buying a statement car – I had to give up the 2-seater soft top when my sons came back from uni and wanted a lift to football, otherwise I might still have one.
- Thinking you are Mark Ronson – clever that as it assumes you know who he is. But basically iPod mixing and mashing and all that other stuff is not for you. Rose says stick to dancing like an adult/parent and embarrass your kids. That last bit is easy.
- Re-thinking your wardrobe – Don’t buy a leather jacket or a tight t-shirt, stone-washed jeans or slip-on shoes. I disagree with the leather jacket, everyone should have at least one. But I don’t want to look like Jeremy Clarkson. And she says no comedy clothes items like ties or cuff-links which is fair enough.
- Chat up anyone under 30 – or have an affair, as your wife will find out. This assumes you haven’t already had one, been found out, and realised how expensive divorce can be. So you may well be single or Living Together Apart. Of course you might find yourself being chatted up by a 30-year old but not realise it. A better rule would be no-one younger than your kids, if you have any, and the Chinese say half your age plus 7 years (or did I make that up?) But in Finnish reindeer herder societies a 20 years age gap was believed to be the ideal to give offspring the best chance to reach maturity.
- Think you’ve still got it – whatever it was you thought you had in the first place. If you still have it then use it or lose it!
- Grow your hair – I think she means stop having haircuts because you can’t just turn your hair growth on and off. If you can grow it it keeps you warm in Winter and then you can have it shorter in hot weather. If you don’t have any left – tough shit! She doesn’t mention dyeing your hair (probably out of respect for Sir Paul)
- Think that nostril hair is one of those things – I agree. Don’t have it, or ear hair for that matter. My former father-in-law referred to it as graveyard moss – enough said?
- Pretend you understand or care about video games that teenagers play – as Rose says if you could then kids wouldn’t want to. I would just say don’t pretend you understand teenagers, full stop.
- Take up an extreme sport – in mid-life that could include speed dating! But seriously if you want to live longer without serious injury or death don’t start in mid-life.
- Remodel yourself in your girlfriend’s image – for example by using botox, bronzer and other cosmetics once the sole provence of women. And did you really think Beckham looked good in that sarong?
So thanks Hilary for the advice. That means I’m OK buying a new Fender Stratocaster guitar then? And you didn’t mention Thai brides, or Russian wives for that matter. Or tattoos or body-piercings.
I notice, by the way, that these all seem to be aimed at men. What about the rules for women who reach midlife or are they too much in denial of that fact?