I know stuff because I’m old

I am the fountain of useless knowledge. Jealous? You should be! I could beat a fair number of you in a Trivial Pursuit game. Give it a twist and add hockey and Disney and you would be toast. The older I get the more brilliantly trivial I get. And I don’t mean that in a good way.

I was sitting at lunch the other day and got into a discussion about Greek Mythology. I spouted off facts about blood spouting from the neck of Medusa when Perseus was beheading her and Pegasus and Chrysador emerged. I suppose it wasn’t a discussion so much as me explaining what happened. My partner looked at me and burst into fits of laughter… “who knows that stuff?” she said through tears of laughter. “Apparently I do”. I owe this to my bucket list called 50 in 50. I wanted to read Greek Mythology and did. It isn’t as interesting as the way it is described in the Percy Jackson series, I recommend that version instead.

Another day we pulled the DVD/VCR combo into the classroom so we could watch a movie based on a story we were learning about that week. My other partner popped the VHS tape into the VCR and rewound it while the movie was shown on the screen. I said press Stop, then Rewind it is much faster. She looked at me like I was a nut bar and then said, I do not understand this thing. WHAT?!?! You can’t work a VCR? Apparently this was another tidbit of knowledge I knew that no one else did.

Yesterday we were discussing the various types of Ski Lodges around the city and why they were different. Well, on was in a Provincial Park, so there was grant money for that one. That is why it is a nice facility. There is another one that is run by the City of Edmonton, so upkeep is based on parks and rec dollars. Then there is the privately owned ones. Having worked in the Ski industry while I was in high school, I knew that it cost a fortune to run a facility and not a lot of money was to be made especially if it was a particularly cold year or dry year. My partners looked at me again with a stunned gaze as if to say “you know a whole lot about nuttin!” I guess you could compare me to George Kostanza.

Then there are those conversations where people at the lunch table are discussing things of their childhood, like Strawberry Shortcake dolls, TMNT, and Cabbage Patch Kids. I look at them and they say, you remember those. Well sure I do, but normally the students I taught played with those, not me. Then they laugh and say you aren’t THAT old. Hmmm wanna bet? I was born in the ’60’s. The look on one of the gals faces was priceless. “SHUT UP!” “No” I said, “It is true”. Apparently I am  a couple of years younger than her mom. Only I don’t seem old. Wow, Thanks?

I am not old, I am middle aged. I am old enough to be the granny of all my students. I said that to one of them and she said, my grandma is old you aren’t. Cool, when a 5 year old says you are not old, then it’s all good!

I am currently reading Stephen King’s 11/22/63. The concept is pretty cool. It is about traveling back in time, changing an event and witnessing a different outcome. The problem being, each time you go back you start back at zero. You undo all the things that were previously done. Cool concept. I particularly liked how the main character talked about the taste and smells of things from the past. Rootbeer being full flavored.Yum!

I remember things tasting …more or smelling…more I think it has a lot to do with preservatives and chemicals altering our bodies and the food we ingest. I don’t think going back in time means to a simpler time, it was just different. Having a head full of useless knowledge would make it more interesting. Betting on sports events, stocks or even being at the right place at the right time for a change.

I think about what I would to change things in my life and perhaps history itself. The nifty part being, if I don’t like the outcome I could just pop back and grab a coke in a glass bottle and call it a day. Things would be right as rain again. So what would I do? Where would I be?

A girl friend of mine in high school went to Boston to go to college. That sounds good! Another friend spent a year in Italy, wow that sounds good too! I think I would not work at the ski hill in high school, then I would NOT meet a certain idiot stick. Then I would want to go to a proper University right off the bat. I would love to go away to school. My cousin went to Scotland for University for one year. I would choose New York. Then see what happens. How cool would it have been to be there for Mark Messier winning the cup? Too fabulous to even think about. Get my business degree in human resources and work for Tiffany & Co on 5th avenue? Yes Please! Okay, that is what I would do and live of the avails of gambling on sports teams to finance my whimsy. Useless knowledge could be a financial boon for me.  If it sucked? I would just come back. How could it suck? Diamonds, New York, Mark Messier… it’s all good.

Being old has it’s advantages. It also gives me the hindsight to know if I had done those things, then the offspring wouldn’t have a change to do these things

13 thoughts on “I know stuff because I’m old

  1. George Kastansa was a dolt, you are thinking of Cliff Clavern on Cheers, still a dolt but he thought he knew a lot.

    As to flavours and smells lost, that actually is age. Which is why really old folks start to get pretty skinny a lot of the time, who wants to eat food that tastes like sawdust?

    Get Bulfinche’s Mythology by Campbell to get a really good overview of all sorts of mythologies.

    If I went back in time and could change just one thing that I did I know exactly what it would be. I doubt the outcome of my life would have been that much different, but we never get to know. Our past is gone, too soon our present and there is no future as a philosophical certainty. There is only now.

  2. You could not pay me to go back…. honestly……. it was miserable, and I’m perfectly happy where I am now. Now, if I had all the knowledge I have now, that might be a different story…..

  3. My sister Amber calls this “knick-knack knowledge”. She used to say my brain was full of the stuff- Of course she says knick-knacks are just pretty little things that can be fun to look at, but are completely useless. I always found it ironic that I collected both knick-knacks and tidbits of knowledge, while she had neither of the two! 🙂

  4. I knew that about a VCR! I wish I remembered all the stuff I once knew. Once upon a time I knew all about Greek Mythology but only a little stuck. And as far as any decisions I’ve made, I don’t think I’d change anything. There are no regrets because everything had to happen to get me here and right now in this moment, I am happy.

  5. I’m also reading 11/22/63…and loving it! Very intriguing concept. I’m about 100 pages to go, which means I’ve barely scratched the surface seeing that the novel is the size of a small car and contains approximately 37,650 pages – but I’m so hooked, I have a feeling I’ll tear through it anyway.

  6. Oh the things we would do in hind sight….. I already know how different life would be. You have intrigued me enough to download the book to my kindle. I can see my knight cringing. I must have 40 samples if not more on there at the moment.
    It does feel super awesome to see our kids do things we wish we had done.

  7. There’s a book by James P. Hogan called Thrice Upon A Time which has a similar concept. I read it in about 1982. It goes into the ‘physics’ of it (I use quotes because it’s not real, of course). But it introduces something realistic — quantum variation. Each time, the timeline is affected, small variations occur. The clock doesn’t roll forward quite the same way. I wonder if King’s novel accounts for that, and if he read the book by Hogan at some point.

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