Don’ts of the Lesser Variety.

Extreme close up on beautiful mouth tongue out

There is a popular saying that age is just a number. While it sounds good in theory, for many reasons, it devalues the experience of years. It ignores the truth that each age carries with it a unique perspective on life. How we view people and the world around us changes based on our age.

Please don’t deny me the many gifts that age has brought.
With age, comes wisdom.
Or at least that is what these gray hairs are supposed to represent.
With age, comes insight.
Or at least adjusted sight, because my glasses keep getting stronger.
With age comes foresight, and hindsight.
I have a better idea where I am going, because the road in front of me is so much shorter.
I have a different perspective on where I’ve been, and the choices I’ve made.
With age, comes respect for the proverbial don’ts.
Now I see what my parents and teachers were trying to tell me
when they warned don’t do this, or don’t believe that.
Now I get it.
.
Sure, there are pearls of don’ts
That have been passed down for generations
But there are those obtuse don’ts as well
The lesser-known warnings
that may not save a life
but could stave off embarassment
or discomfort.
.
These are the don’ts of the lesser-known variety.
Lessons learned the hard way.
.
Don’t drink orange juice
after brushing your teeth.
It’s like a science experiemnt
gone awry in your mouth.
.
Don’t wear your house key
on a strap around your neck
if you fall down
it may impale you.
.
Don’t take a dare
from your kindergarten friend
when he asks you to kiss Jeannie.
He’ll be laughing
While you sit in the Principal’s office
explaining yourself,
unable to face Jeannie
until the sixth grade.
.
Don’t trust the bully
when he invites you over to play
with his cohort
he has that reputation
for a reason.
.
Don’t believe Mom
when she takes you for a car ride
Skipping church isn’t fun
when she takes you
to the hospital instead.
.
Don’t pour chocolate syrup
over your buttered popcorn
it’s not as fun
or as tasty
as it looks.
.
Don’t let your roomates know
that you abhor the scent of sardines
Don’t be surprised
to find more tin boxes
stuffed with sardines
lying open
under your bed.
.
Don’t go to school
with your hair styled
like your favorite Rock Star
what you loved in bedroom mirror
you’ll regret by 3rd period
when Jeannie walks by
smirking.
.
Don’t leave your lunches
stuffed in your locker
when Mom keeps packing
chicken salad sandwiches.
It is a fact
that as gross as they are
when she makes them
they are even worse
two weeks later.
.
Don’t eat the jiggly
wiggly, squiggly
cranberry sauce
from the can
right after swigging
your milk.
The taste is akin
to the orange juice
toothpaste mixing
that I warned you about earlier.
Some kind of weird science.
.
Don’t leave your
childhood collections
in your friend’s
uncle’s
unlocked basement.
Twenty years of baseball cards
and comic books
is something
you might want to share
with your kids someday.
.
Don’t throw away
your high school yearbooks
when you’re cleaning
out the basement.
It wasn’t just you
that looked awkward
and maybe all of those
comments written
calling you sweet
weren’t such a bad thing
after all.
.
So don’t go there.
I know you may give in to curiosity
wondering if it can really be so bad
but trust me on these.
Remember, with age comes hindsight.
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9 thoughts on “Don’ts of the Lesser Variety.

  1. Wonderful and so true. “Don’ts” are valued once we’re further down the road. With hindsight! Wouldn’t it be an interesting study to write this same thing over the years. Think what would I have said as a 10-year-old, 20-year-old…

    Liked by 2 people

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