Theres nothing wrong with making the best of ones declining years, but what does annoy me is the fatalism. Now that were seriously in range of finding therapies that actually work against ageing, this apathy, of course, becomes an enormous part of the problem.
Science is, rightly, searching for drugs to arrest ageing or to slow the advance of dementia. But the evidence suggests that many of the most powerful factors determining how you age come from what you do, and what you do with others: whether you work, whether you play music, whether you have regular visitors.
I don't think of getting older as looking better or worse; it's just different. You change, and that's OK. Life is about change. I don't have anxiety about it, so I'm not running to get Botox. Maybe that will change, but I don't think so. I feel comfortable in my skin and comfortable with ageing, so I think it's okay that I get wrinkles.
As our economy faces up to potential labour shortages due to our ageing population and as it moves to a new level of sophistication to compete with the rest of the world, we're going to need every Australian on board pulling their weight, rejoining the workforce, gaining new skills. Writing off individuals and communities suffering from poverty just creates a dead weight for our economy to drag along.
Dying is a matter of slapstick and pratfalls. The ageing process is not gradual or gentle. It rushes up, pushes you over and runs off laughing. No one should grow old who isn't ready to appear ridiculous.