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Fall down for, no reason

Each morning as I wend my way to Turnpike Lane tube station, I’m inevitably faced with a barricade of elderly Freedom Pass holders – this morning there were more than usual, poised with one eye on the clock (waiting for 9am, the earliest the cards can be used) and one hand tapping the card on the reader. When the big hand hits perpendicular, a wave of purple rinse and shopping bags floods through the gates and engulfs the platform.

Usually, I just manage to make it through while the crowd is milling, uncomfortably, on the station concourse like a group of urban meerkats. Today, they had edged closer than ever before and were crouched, today more like leopards in the chase than the chased themselves.

I often envy the old. As a man once sang, “the old folks are losers,” but he was wrong. I have to come to work today, to do the exact same thing as I did yesterday, while meaningless bickering rages around my ears. I have this to look forward to for the next forty years or so. If I was old, I wouldn’t have to go to work. I could get up when I wanted – although I think it may be a rule that one has to get up really early when one is old, even if one has nothing to do – I could swamp the tube station, I could hit children with walking sticks (probably) and I could bribe love out of relatives with biscuits. I think that’s a pretty good deal.


3 Responses

  1. Sorry to state the obvious, but simple solution: leave for work earlier!

  2. Well gosh, I don’t *mind* the old folks. Just a curious phenomena. I certainly don’t object to them sufficiently to get up any earlier.

  3. They are indeed curious. I used to perform a comic poem about the problems of getting older and then I sort of ‘grew up’ (in the space of a month or two) and felt guilty, so dropped it!

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