Thursday, August 14, 2014

Middle-Aged Bragging Rights

                                                               
                                                 
 
                                                                                                             

















Do you ever notice how some people can't go one minute without bragging? They start at a young age, and every conversation turns into a competition. They go to the best schools, graduate with the best jobs, marry the best spouses, and move into the best homes.

After their gorgeous and gifted children move away, they come to the realization that they have very little to talk about. They're at that awkward age where their bodies are creaking, and their weight is shifting in the wrong places. Trapped in middle-aged limbo: too young for retirement, yet too old to sit in a chair without dozing off. If only they had grandchildren to bounce on their knees before arthritis kicks in. Here they are, a group of friends gathered around the picnic table bundled up in blankets beside a roaring fire on a balmy summer evening playing the latest board game. 


It's Toots and Bladders, Battered Hip, and Crazy Mates all rolled into one: the game where it pays to decay. A player draws the first card which asks, "Have you ever had a cyst lanced from your perineum?"  Raymond answers "yes," collects $200, and advances his miniature oxygen tank down the board.  Pearl throws the dice, and lands on Constipation Blvd. Everyone presses the buzzers at once. To break the four-way tie Lexi shouts out, "How long has it been?"  Pearl answers "five days," Raymond three, Lexi two, and Leonard adds, "since lunchtime."


When Leonard proudly admits to having hair plugs he is forced to move his miniature enema kit into the Unnecessary Cosmetic Procedure Pavilion forfeiting his next turn. Now the competition has shifted from earlier conversations about material possessions to who has the largest surgical scars.  The couples are thrilled to have something to talk about, even if it means battling it out to see who has suffered the most. 

Lexi draws the final card which reads, "Congratulations on your fifth anniversary of being cancer-free..." Lexi can't believe that her husband and closest friends remembered it has been almost five years to the day since she underwent her last radiation treatment for breast cancer. She is so excited that they went to all the trouble of ordering a customized version of the game just for her. Then she reads the rest of the card, "...and your mother-in-law will be joining in the celebration tomorrow, when she moves in with you after her hip replacement surgery." With that everyone turns their winnings o
ver to Lexi, right after prying her hands off of Leonard's hair plugs.

This is a repost from November 2011.                              

35 comments:

  1. That's funny! Gave me a good laugh.

    ReplyDelete
  2. This cheered me no end. Thanks for sharing this excellent post.
    Yvonne.

    ReplyDelete
  3. This is awesome...and depressing at the same time! Great job!!! You should try to get this published in a magazine.

    ReplyDelete
  4. That is hilarious!! Someone needs to make that game.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Funny but just a little too close to reality.

    ReplyDelete
  6. This was absolutely amazing. "Have you ever had a cyst lanced from your perineum?" may be the funniest thing I've read all day. Well done!

    ReplyDelete
  7. That's hilarious. I'm going to have my first colonoscopy later this month. Perhaps I'll be able to brag about having a polyp removed.

    Love,
    Janie

    ReplyDelete
  8. My grandpa was a braggart and loved to tell you about his pills, aches and pains, and surgical scars. Honestly, it was painful. I laughed and cringed at the time same while reading this. I have suffered a long time with migraines, but I have tried not to go on about it... because I don't want to be THAT person.

    ReplyDelete
  9. funny and sorta sadly scary at the same time as all the boomers collapse. Indeed, it's good to be conscious of NOT complaining about falling apart. So, did I tell you about my vision......?

    ReplyDelete
  10. Miranda - Thank you so much!

    Arleen - I'm glad I dusted this off! Thanks Arleen!

    Yvonne - Thanks for the kind words!

    Stephanie - This was published in local literary arts magazine East On Central a few years ago. Thank you Stephanie!

    Alex - Players might have to drink shots to stay awake! Thanks Alex!

    Delores - I think you left a similar comment the first time! I feel the same way! Thanks Delores!

    B & B - When I tried to download an image, your board game picture popped up. I would've used it, but I was looking for an older couple. The perineum bit was not pretty, but I'm glad you appreciated it! This was quite a compliment coming from the dynamic duo! Thanks B & B!

    Janie - It's better to brag about the wonderful breakfast you had afterward. I hope you don't have any polyps. Thanks Janie, and good luck with the colonoscopy. Remember the prep is the worst part.

    Robin - Everything in moderation! We all have to talk about our surgeries, and aches and pains sometimes. By sharing stories about your migraines, you're helping other silent sufferers. Your grandpa probably meant well, and just got carried away. Hope you're feeling okay. Thanks Robin!

    Julie

    ReplyDelete
  11. Lexi's mother-in-law is still alive? Man, she must be a hardy old witch! What happens if you land on Flatulence Blvd?

    ReplyDelete
  12. Joanne - You have my permission to vent about anything you want! You have the patience of a saint! Do poor vision problems run in pairs, or is this a side effect from your tireless formatting?! Stay healthy my friend! Thanks Joanne!

    Gorilla - Of course Lexi's mother is still alive. Lexi could be 55, and her mom could be between 75-85. I pride myself on doing extensive research for all my stories! Landing on Flatulence Blvd. will give you a free pass to the nearest changing station at the underpa(nt)ss. Ba da bing! Sorry, I work best at 4 a.m.

    Julie

    ReplyDelete
  13. This made me laugh, Julie. I can't imagine playing games like this, but it's very telling! Very good!!

    ReplyDelete
  14. You gotta submit this one for publication. :)

    ReplyDelete
  15. How do you come up with this stuff, Julie? I'm so impressed. I think you need to market this one. But I don't want you to be targeted by the AARP or Joan Rivers. This part made me laugh heartily: "Pearl throws the dice, and lands on Constipation Blvd. Everyone presses the buzzers at once." Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  16. I want that game! Julie - you really have a vivid imagination. Wish I had half of it.

    ReplyDelete
  17. We have German friends who say that when we/they were younger all they talked about was sex but nowadays all we/they talk about is health problems. It is so true. Not sure about the middle aged bit though, surely it's mostly a bit later in life than that.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Val - I should probably call it the TMI game! Thanks Val!

    Luanne - It appeared in a local magazine a few years back, but I'll probably recycle it for the book I'll never write. Thanks Luanne!

    Robyn - I'm no match for Joan Rivers, but I would love to see her and my mom go a round or two! Sadly, too many of us have been down Constipation Blvd. Thanks Robyn!

    Mary - You have a wonderful imagination too! Thanks Mary!

    Jo - Some of us already have had a head start! Everyone has something, and their version is always worse. "Worse" is the new "best!"

    Julie

    ReplyDelete
  19. Thanks for reposting. I missed it first time around. What a hoot! And way too true. (Wanta see my scars...?)

    ReplyDelete
  20. I missed this the first time, or maybe I just couldn't relate as well. This is fantastic. So funny. Thank Julie, me and my aching back really needed this post today.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Susan - You never miss anything! Maybe we could have a worst scar blogfest! Thanks Susan!

    Rhonda - Sorry about your back. I'll bet it doesn't hurt as much as my bulging disc does, and if you think it does, you're wrong! Having fun yet?! Thanks Rhonda!

    Julie

    ReplyDelete
  22. Hi Julie - I'm just glad this game isn't around - though perhaps it should be - we'd all be laughing or cringing in pain ... thanks so much for reposting .. I'll go have an enema, or my ears syringed ... actually no I won't -the aeroplanes have reminded me it's Airborne weekend and I need to keep my ears fully blocked! Cheers Hilary

    ReplyDelete
  23. Funny! If we have to suffer, we all want to be the one who suffered the most. Great job.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Hahaha! Well, at least we're not alone. :D Well-done.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Hilary - We have the Air and Water Show in Chicago this weekend too! Take care of your ears, and your other parts! Thanks Hilary!

    Carol - Sad but true! Thanks Carol!

    Daisy - Yes, misery really does love company! Thanks Daisy!

    Julie

    ReplyDelete
  26. What a funny post. Middle age limbo is hard work ( not that I should know). People are stuck between seeing themselves young, beautiful and fit, whilst at the same time noticing podgy fat pockets around the stomach, grey hairs protruding on the hairline and bones that won't bend like they use to, ha ha ha. What a dilemma to be caught up in, until it passes into old age :) And there's no mistaken it when it happens.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Brilliant! When is your game being produced?! If only...

    ReplyDelete
  28. Rum-Punch Drunk - It's great to see you! Hope you're doing well. Some people blossom in middle-age, while others are stuck in limbo. It all comes down to having good genes, and a great attitude. Thanks RPD!

    Susan - If only...it were that easy! By the time that happens I'd have to create a senior version! Thanks Susan!

    Julie

    ReplyDelete
  29. Another support group! Or is that support hose group?

    ReplyDelete
  30. My brothers and I are in a competition to see who dies first.
    The first one to kick the bucket wins.
    Or loses.
    Depends on your point of view.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Al - Hopefully, this competition will continue until your youngest brother is 100, and you all pass together in your sleep at a nursing home. Of course, they'll have to kick out the young nurses first!

      Julie

      Delete