How to enjoy an afternoon of deep thinking

Forgive me if I appear to be sleeping – I’m actually thinking, deeply! It’s something my fellow oldies will understand perfectly, but the youngsters under 50 won’t get it at all for some years yet. The deep thinking comes on at about 2pm and it’s quite easy to spot, once you know the clues.

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First, the oldie can be seen wandering about the house obviously looking for something — a quiet room with an easy chair, (or better still a sofa), not too much light, no television and an air-conditioner to feed warm or cool air into the space depending on the time of year.

If you get a look at the oldies face at this time, you’ll see a slightly vacant expression, eyes half closed, lower jaw sagging just a little, and in really severe cases a hint of dribble at the corners of the mouth. Finally, if you watch the wanderings about the house, you’ll see that trousers and belts are being slackened, to allow the body to spread adequately during the period of ‘deep thought’.

Perhaps here I should hasten to add that the picture I have painted above is strictly in connection with the male of the oldie species, of which I am proud to be a member, (in my world, an oldie is anyone over the age of 70 and I’m not prepared to argue the point!).

Whether female oldies loosen their belts, or dribble, I have no idea — in fact I find it’s very rare to even find a female oldie who wants to sit and think deeply at all; most of them profess to be far too busy to indulge in such hedonistic activities, and who am I to argue with a female oldie — that’s how I’ve managed to live to the age of 83!

To get back to my subject, the oldie, having found a suitable nest, makes preparations for settling down. This can involve puffing up any cushions that are available, pouring a large whisky, putting today’s paper on a nearby small round table, with the glass of whisky alongside it, removing shoes and tie, (if one is being worn), and removing then polishing spectacles. These little ritual chores having been completed, the oldie then sits down carefully in the middle of the sofa, (let’s forget about chairs right now, they never are as comfortable as the sofa), and makes up his mind whether to roll to the left or the right. This is important; a new right knee or hip could make you decide to roll to the left so as not to apply too much weight to the newly fitted equipment; or a pacemaker could cause a decision to roll right, for the same reasons as the left roll above. At 70-plus life is full of decisions like this — could my hearing aid fall out, or even my dentures, if a wrong decision is made, and there’s the hair to think of too, not that there’s much of that left, but a bad lying decision could result in even more of it rubbing off onto the cushion before you stopped ‘thinking deeply’!

Having made all your decisions and found a comfortable position that doesn’t make parts of you ache later, you can now close your eyes and start thinking about what you want to think deeply about. Sounds easy doesn’t it, but don’t forget, your memory is nowhere near as good as it was when you were a mere kid of 60. In order to think about what you want to think about you need to remember what you did this morning as a starting point, and that’s not easy at all.

Oldies’ brains are so packed with material, stored from a lifetime of thinking, that there isn’t a lot of room left in there to store the stuff that just happened to you, a couple of hours ago. You usually find the result is that before you can remember this morning’s adventures, you’ve drifted off into the deep thinking mentioned at the beginning of this piece, and that’s the way it stays until the missus comes an hour or so later, taps you on the shoulder to tell you dinner is ready; and you haven’t even touched that lovely glass of whisky — where does the time go?

How do you like to spend your afternoons? Does it involve some ‘deep thinking’?