Getting older IS funny!

acute_angina1 Okay, so this time last year I was recovering from a serious medical event that should have, for all practical purposes killed me.  But as my kids say, “it’s hard to kill ’em”  (referring to my side of the family).  I distinctly remember being in the back of a siren-blasting ambulance thinking to myself that with all the close calls in my life including Iraq scud missiles bursting overhead upon the impact of our Patriot missiles, this little episode isn’t going get me either.

Upon arrival, at the hospital and some excellent quick work by the cardiac physician on duty, my “widow maker” was reopened and I was extended life…again.  After being moved into the ICU strapped down like a Hannibal Lecter, I then endured the barrage of family, friends, and medical staff coming to see that I again cheated death, and of course to tell me that I have to “slow down.”  Yeah right.

Interestingly my diet was pretty good, I exercise regularly and had a physical only 2 months prior and I did well with “no issues.”  Obviously, they got this one wrong.  Thanks to modern medicine, I’m going to keep living life, but better living through chemicals…you know medicine.  I never took medicine beyond some seasonal allergy stuff and in my younger days, a bottle of Pepto Bismol after a night of alcohol buffoonery. So, one change of getting older…I now watch the drug commercials sometimes wondering if what I’m taking is going to give me bleeding eyes, itchy ears, and some “seeping” issues as side effects.

After 3 days in ICU, I went home and was on “house arrest” which meant I was supposed to chill. The second day I jumped in my car just to drive around for some scenery change and a cigar. During my confinement, I also had to be “taken” to the hospital to meet with the rehab folks to “get me in line” so I could live longer.  When I walked into the rehab facility, I thought I was at a geriatric health club.  I have never seen so many white Rockports and exercise suits in my life.  The counselor proceeded to ask me questions about my family history, my eating habits, work habits, exercise routines, social habits, etc.  Upon conclusion and her review, she started right off the top with “well, you are going to have to stop eating chips and drinking any alcohol and the cigars must go.”  At that, I laughed and said “nope, I must go…now”…never to return.

Okay, so here is my theory on life and getting older.  First, either you do or you don’t.  I refuse to do anything other than to live what I have left any other way than what makes me happy…cigars and all. If eating chips sometimes is going to kill me, so what…I am going to die of something.  Medicine? Well, I have not had any notable side effects that would cause me to stop my taking prescriptions, but I still pay attention to the commercials. I’m not going to wear white Rockports for exercise, and yes golf is exercise. I currently have severe hearing loss from my military days and really is no solution for tinnitus. …so I’m the “what did they say” guy already.  I will drive until someone hides my keys.  As if this is a revelation, as I get older I will continue to speak my mind…I’m a believer of not telling you to go to hell, but the truth, and that feels like hell.  If you are a woman, I’ll call you “ma’am” no matter your age, I won’t write the response to women here that find that “offensive” .  When I think you look nice, I’m going to tell you, get over yourself, I’m not hitting on you.  I’m still too vain with my hair not being combed in public and not dress nice. I refuse for my belt buckle to point downwards (from an oversized belly)…nor am I going to pull my pants up just below my nipples (at least not yet). Getting older also, for whatever reason (maybe from overuse when we are young) our sex life slows up a bit…oh well. On rare occasions, this subject presents tough decisions. Frankly, sometimes I choose a good sandwich, chips, and watching football…unlike sex, it lasts longer and I can nap along the way.

A year later, I’m still pretty much me.  I want to continue to be no one else and try to bring humor (my style) to approach life… my acuteangina and all.  If I had known I had one, I probably would have done things differently a long time ago.  Getting older is funny…Cheers y’all.

  1. Congratulations on you speedy recovery Jeff. Good to hear you are back to normal. As long as we’ve got chips, viagra and a pre-paid funeral plan there is nothing to worry about, apart from maybe an errant Scud missile!


  2. Jeff Harbeson said:


    Thanks…and you are correct in your assessment of necessities…don’t forget cigars!



  3. Deborah said:

    You go, Jeff! When your number is up, it’s up, so you may as well live life to the fullest until yours is called! None of us are getting out of here alive. 🙂


  4. Xsara Hale said:

    Thank you for another inspiring post! Your honesty,passion for your work and ability to add humour to poignant subjects is admirable.


  5. Jeff Harbeson said:


    Thank you so much for your kind words…I really enjoy sharing thoughts and experiences…life is funny. Please tell me about you and your firm?



  6. Joe Mazeroll said:

    Well, Jeff, as one of those who’ve tagged “technically” a senior (57 years young), I remember what my old Sargeant-Major used tell me: “Any fool can be uncomfortable”…


  7. Jeff Harbeson said:

    Joe, thanks for the follow and reply! Yep…when I was a Senior TAC Officer and OCS I used to tell new Lieutenants “always have your hair cut short, your boots polished, your uniform pressed and be in great shape. At least you’ll know you look like you know what you’re doing…no one will know how stupid you are until you open your mouth. Cheers!


  8. Joe Mazeroll said:

    I’ve always enjoyed your postings and comments, Jeff… I still get a slight flutter and grin when an old comrade in arms barks on the phone: “Are your heels together, mister?” Cheers.. and enjoy those cigars! I DO!


  9. Jeff Harbeson said:


    Lets have one together someday…tell me about your firm…I am a part of a Canadian based company as well as a funeral home owner in the US…


  10. Joe Mazeroll said:

    I work with a wonderful, dedicated crew at Pierson’s Funeral Service Ltd., in Calgary, AB. I started with them last year in the middle of August, 2013. Before that, I was with…. SCI… in one of their locations in Edmonton, north of Calgary. I retired from the military here… ironic… my first posting was here, come to think of it… I digress… sorry. Pierson’s has been around for 38 years, is family owned and run, and an independent funeral home. They are a well established firm, with a rock solid reputation. We help multi-cultural families in need.


  11. Sara M. said:

    Great post, Jeff! Glad to hear you ARE still looking on the ‘bright side of life’! Getting older is definitely funny, if you can take a humorous stance on all those little challenges that start to surface. I admire your attitude to keep going regardless and not kowtow too much to the healthcare system’s way and preparing us [preserving us] for aging!! I have become a huge juice and plant-based diet fan of late and am amazed at how it has improved my quality of health. I didn’t have a health epiphany like you experienced, but watching ‘Food Matters’ and reaching a ‘certain’ age…instigated a change.


  12. Jeff Harbeson said:


    Thank you for reading my blog…and you’re right, getting older makes us pay attention! Sara, are you the sales/marketing contact with US Funerals/DFS Memorials? If so, I would like to have a discussion with you.




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