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Young & Dumb

Life moves fast. One minute I’m watching Woody Woodpecker cartoons as a 6-year-old punk. The next minute, I’m bald, getting colonoscopies, watching my cholesterol intake and picking hair out of my ears.


As a kid, the pursuit of “fun” was everything. I kept sucking at the orange of my hours, tasting the sweetness, drinking it all down like a giant bottle of life soda—completely oblivious to “reality.”


One day, fun turns to “serious.” Your parents flood you with questions: What are you going to do with your life? How will you make money? Do you know how much cholesterol is in that Twinkie? Why are you slouching? Don’t you know you’ll end up 2-feet tall as an old man if you keep slouching? Keep your shoulders straight…”


As a kid, I thought “cholesterol” was the capital of Sweden. And the only reason I slouched was to dodge all those inane questions hurled at me.



What happened to those glorious Saturday mornings just watching Woody Woodpecker cartoons and eating a ton of Cap’n Crunch cereal? I can’t eat Cap’n Crunch anymore. I’m too old and educated now. It’s too processed, has too much sugar, and the guy on the box looks like a used boat salesman.


I want to be young and dumb again.


As a kid, my biggest decision was whether I got Ding Dongs or Coke with the three quarters I stole from my mom’s purse.


Now, I have to decide if I want to spend my valuable time on Earth at the gym burning my bubble gut and turning it into a “six-pack” so I can be a real man.


Now I have to decide if I want hair implants to look young again.


Now, I don’t buy Ding Dongs—I get ear hair trimmers at the discount store.


The older I get (and the more I obsess about cholesterol, hair implants and bubble guts) the more I want that carefree, dumb feeling again.


I can probably sit around and watch TV all day, but I can’t eat Cap’n Crunch. The “Thou Shalt Not Eat…” list looms too large in my wise, old, bald brain.


No GMOs. No gluten. No artificial color. No non-compostable packaging.


But there’s hope. Now there’s a bunch of low-sugar, gluten-free, sustainable cereal alternatives. And some even use 10% of their profits to adopt monkeys and save the rainforest.


I can save monkeys and eat cereal.


Count that as one benefit to growing up.


FYI, I now know the capital of Sweden isn't Cholesterol, it's Denmark.


Bruce











   © 2021 Bruce Palma

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