FIFTY (Not Out)
Chris Mangham

I'm 50 (not out), the years have rolled by
That's half a century, all told
But inside the casing I feel just the same
I'm really not feeling that old

Not wanting to appear to be morbid
But before I end up in a hearse
I've observed a few things about ageing
And put these thoughts down into verse

Now, as the years pass, your hearing adjusts
Affecting what sounds you can hear
Instructions from t'wife are definitely screened out
Selective male deafness, I fear

And about the same time your eyes sort of change
Your retina loses the plot
Which leads to confusion for wearers of specs
As to whether to wear them, or not?

You might need them on to see further away
You might need them off when its shorter
But then there's a distance somewhere in between
Where either I oughtn't or ought to

The modern optometrist will try to persuade
Varifocals will cure it for sure
For some folk the outlook is sharp, crisp and clear
For others it's just a big blur

But its 200 quid as a minimum
For a designer pair that suits
Or you could try a pair of cheap readers
They're only three fifty at Boots

I've still got me teeth, attached by me gums
As natural as natures intent
I'm hoping it might be a few more years yet
when I'm stuck with Steradent

A scale and a polish and 6 monthly check
Keep 'em fresh, mind, but that's getting dear
In t'future we might 'ave to take out a loan
To afford a job lot of veneers

Of course if the cost of implants and veneers
Just leaves you looking frightened
The lower cost option is maybe for you
Just your visible front noshers whitened

50's the age when you might start receding
Or your hair might be thinning on yer 'ead
No sooner have the follicles departed your scalp
Then they sprout from your ears instead

You start to keep count of all the grey hairs
And when as the total hits ten
It's off down to Boots at a time when its quiet
To purchase some Just For Men

At same time your eyebrows decide to engage
In a growth spurt that makes you just gape
You'll need a few sessions wi' t' tweezers
To streamline 'em back into shape

Theres hairs now appearing from nostrils
Where there previously wasn't a glimmer
You can get them removed with the NHS
By the way, that's Nasal Hair Strimmer

My skins not a soft as it previously was
The wife's started buying me creams
I don't mind the bit where she rubs them all in
To maintain the man of her dreams

Its a popular age to develop a paunch
A function of beer and the telly
But so far so good, I'm not doing too bad
I can still see me feet past me belly

Now energy levels are not what they were
And if th'wife wants a little romance
I've now got a simple proforma request
That she fills in one week in advance

Another wee problem at 50
Your bladder has started to shrink
Visitations are now much more frequent
But it empties as quick as a wink

The downside is sleep deprivation
When going three times in the night
The trick is to hone your night vision
So you dont have to turn on t' big light

That way your other half isn't disturbed
Sleeping serenely instead
Meanwhile you just have to go with the flow
And carefully exit the bed

Once you've relieved, you creep back to bed
Trying to keep the noise down
Whatever you do, just don't flush the loo
And remember to leave the lid down

As physical decline slowly sets in
You'd hope mentally, things would get easier
Just when you were thinking that things weren't too bad
You find you've got mid life amnesia

You'll be sent out shopping, instructions quite clear
The wife has typed out a full list
But when you return you have to explain
Where's all of the things that you've missed

At 50 you're not quite as agile
As when you were still in your teens
A forward roll now becomes quite an event
And doing the crab in your dreams!

A good friend of mine who is older
Gave me some real useful tips
Get yourself up to Wrightington
Not the gym, but for new knees and hips

That's as well, but its major upheaval
Having your joints all renewed
And as well some cocky young surgeon
Fiddling while I'm in the nude

No, I'll stick with me current arrangement
Let wear and tear just take their toll
And if it exceeds the pain threshold
I'll pop in a Co-codamol

Although me body's not doing too bad
Now that I'm 50 (not out)
Theres other afflictions that might yet appear
Like haemorrhoids, hernias or gout

So, gracefully ageing, that's a good plan
With exercise to keep us all trimmer
And if I reach 90 I'll have yer a race
The two of us, but I'll have me Zimmer

How many years are left on the clock
I really would not like to venture
But I'm hoping for happiness in our old age
For me and the wife and our dentures

There are one or two good things about reaching this age
I'll now drink real ale and not lager
Me insurance premiums will be an all time low
And I'll get monthly mailings from Saga

Not long to go and I'll get a bus and rail pass
I'll be able to use it aplenty
Unless the government gets it's own way
And moves my retirement to seventy

I'm 50 (not out), the years have rolled by
That's half a century, all told
But inside the casing I feel just the same
I'm really not feeling that old

With yourselves in the room it's turned back the years
It really has been a great pleasure
What a grand set of folk you really all are
The good times we've had I will treasure

So let's have a toast to friendships
For all the good folk that we know
I think I might need to sit down now
Me knees are beginning to go.

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