Monday 29 April 2013


A phenomenon has leapt up at me. There's a lot of it about you may say. I agree. However, this one just wouldn't be ignored. I suspect I have talked about it before but I am a touch lazy to trawl back and see what the status actually is. The phenomenon: how like the beginning is the end: the baby and the old lady. Let's start with hair. These days mine would need washing every day to provide bulk. There is nothing appealing about a glimpse of elderly scalp but the scalp visible under the down on a baby's head is utterly charming even though it would not fill a shaving mug were it to be shaved off - the down, not the scalp, silly. Drop your eyes a bit further. Both I and the baby are 'd' shaped. There is no waist where waist there should be and will be in baby's case. Any trousers which can still be done up at the waist are positively uniform for me. They enable the side view to have an 'as-if' waist. How about legs: bandy for both in my experience. Teeth: none of one's own, ten to one, I'd guess. There again, the similarities differ. Baby will acquire some in due course but easily digested and not too copious is a common factor for old and very young for many months. (In case you are kind enough to wonder, or are humanly curious, I do, actually, have most of my own teeth. They are no longer pearly but they serve and they are fixed in situ, anyway for the now.)  Walking requires care and attention for both species. I do not have fingers to hold on to but I do have a stick.  An afternoon nap is good for both. Mine is taken indoors. Babies are often walked in the fresh air.

There are bigger differences, of course. A baby is on learning duty every moment her/his  eyes are open. What's this, how's that, safe not safe, yell dont yell. Like, don't like. Try, don't risk. I'm lucky if I have staying power enough to read a newspaper right through.  The Father of my Children unknowingly keeps my education valve open. He is always ready to discuss items he has read, and assumed I have also read, in the daily papers.There are times when the odd grunt, a few "reallys" and one or two "don't says" don't cut the mustard or pull the wool. You may imagine that the retired amongst us have all day every day to fill with unprescribed delight instead of duty. Equally, a baby carries the same deduction. Wrong for both. See above for the baby's occupation and, as for me and my like, we are equally occupied in finding things to occupy us. I can hear a chorus of dissent. I urge you: transcribe it on to a 'comment' on the blog. It's true, though. I know retirees who are busy from morning to night with this and that class, group, voluntary work, outings and so on and so forth. Activities very like our putative baby's, in fact. ( I am very conscious that a sentence requires a verb. I think, though, it is sometimes permissable to assume one as in "those activities are very like...). I remember scrubbing a floor hours before the vague discomfort in my stomach and back turned in to rhythmic pulses and presaged the arrival of one or other or all. Currently, I am avoiding tidying desk, drawers and cupboards all of which will provide a first class horror task for those left to clear up behind me. You'd think I'd get a move on having a had a trial run at terminal illness last summer. Pretend I have done it, or, anyway, made a start, will you please?. But, as the thesis is intended to put  to you, what's so very different from scrubbing floors? A baby has a limited communication range. It transpires that the elderly do, too, repetition being the curse of the old and, probably, alone. In fact, I have the strongest feeling that I am acting that very premise out. Somewhere in me I know that we have had this or a very similar exposition before and even befive. Prynhawn da

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your always apprecciated blogs - from a rainy European capital