Gray Wisdom: advice from the oldest people in the world.
Why Should We Listen to Old People?
I am under the assumption that young people have more to learn from older generations than the other way around. In a rapidly growing society, where new is often viewed as better, this is becoming an unpopular belief. America is ambivalent about the wisdom of older people, when they should be upheld as "experts" on living long and exhaustive lives. Reading through a recent article on 'How to Live Longer Better,' I was struck by snippet quotes from some of today's oldest people in the world. I find profound wisdom in their words and wanted to share them with you.
- "After World War II, my entire generation went a bit crazy and wanted to enjoy life. In every garden, every balcony, every restaurant in Italy, you'd see people dancing, for months after the war. I tried to remember that throughout my life: go out and dance." - Carla Julli, 90, Modena , Italy.
- I've always moved with the times I'm living in. If I didn't, I don't think I'd be at home in the world, because everyone is younger than I am. There's a certain quality about aging that is contagious, and I think that I get old when I'm around other people my age." - Betty Reid Soskin, 96, Richmond, California.
- "I drink half a can of Diet Coke every day and pour the rest down the sink. I figure, I'm 104 years old, I can eat what I want." - Theresa Rowley, 104, Grand Rapids, Michigan.
- "Everything seems to be in that prayer that Jesus taught us: 'Lead us not into temptation.' During the generation that I lived in, a lot of people had the habit of smoking cigarettes, but I didn't smoke. Moderation is the way to enjoy things. One pie can feed 16 people." - Joe Barreca, 95, Seattle.
- "I spent 13 years at Sears repairing TV sets, so I'm fairly technical-minded, and I keep up with all the latest tech. I have an iPad, iPhone, a Kobo eReader and whatever's computerized. I try to repair anything on my own using YouTube." - William Gordon Standing, 96, Carleton Place, Ontario.
- "Not by design, but by necessity, I grew up eating an awful lot of vegetables, because I grew up on a farm during the Depression. You learned to eat collard greens, spinach and lettuce. We didn't have a nickel for a box of matches, but we still kept olive oil in the house." - John Tsitouras, 92, Las Vegas.
- "Before my wife died of a stroke at 70, I worried about dying. You sort of figure, well, maybe I'll be different, I'll live forever. But that won't happen. The thing is, I don't mind going now because she's gone, and I'll be with her then. She is the most wonderful person I ever met." - George Hardy, 92, Sarasota, Fla.
What wisdom do you draw from these men and woman?
Our “experts” on living can serve as a helpful guide for younger people. They bring experiential knowledge of just about every problem a human being can go through. People from their teens to middle age will find that the roadmap for life elders provide can help them take a new look at their own situations and to choose new ways of living that will make them happier.
We just have to be willing to ask and listen.