The hydrangea post the other day inspired some readers, here and on Facebook, to throw out their own nominations for what makes someone “old,” if not having a hydrangea bush or two in the yard.

Arlene:  Decorating with or crocheting doilies 

Laila:  Tending African violets and having crewelwork on the back of your sofa

Kathy:  Growing camelias (as the old lady in To Kill a Mockingbird did)

I was prompted to come up with more of my own.  Observing the parking lot at my mother in law’s retirement community, where 90% of the cars are a golden beige, I would say:

Driving a four-door sedan that is the color of a butterscotch lozenge, preferably well dinged and dented.

Wearing putty colored shoes. 

Seldom buying new things.  Chris once pointed out part of the brilliance of The Sopranos was the perfection in props.  Uncle June’s house was full of spot-on 1950s possessions, including a flip-open flattish metal file where he kept his phone numbers.  Chris remembers his own aged relatives having such a device, now totally obsolete.

Cataract sunglasses (when Mick Jagger has to wear them, perhaps they’ll be cool).

Yellow windbreakers.

Squeeze-open plastic change purses.

(The latter two cribbed from author Richard Russo).

What have I missed? 


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