Morning Thanks

Garrison Keillor once said we'd all be better off if we all started the day by giving thanks for just one thing. I'll try.

Monday, October 14, 2013

A Geriatric Decalogue I--Covetousness

Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, 
thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, 
nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, 
nor his ox, nor his ass, 
nor any thing that is thy neighbour's.

Okay, but what about good knees, or the fact that my neighbor still has hair? Or how about this? What I covet is my neighbor's sporty bladder. Shoot! that thing performs so well he visits the can only once a night. How about feet that don't hurt or eyes that don't lie or ears that actually gather and sort what's being said?

Covetousness? For an old guy?--not a big problem. 

Ever try to buy a gift for an old man? Good luck. It's nigh unto impossible, not because we have everything but because we need little and want less. 

Someone has to interpret scripture for old men because the commandments, like old guys themselves, just don't operate like they used to. 

If you see old men in malls, generally a daughter is pushing 'em through stores, hanging new flowered ties around their necks while reminding them how important it is to sport a new shirt once in a while to show people you're still in the land of the living. Think for a minute--there are no 75-year old mall rats. You get sore feet fast.

I've never been a farmer, but I've lived around them long enough to know that old timers are the ones drawing hand breaks on new machinery. It's the kid who thinks he needs that new John Deere, not the old man--shoot, the old geezer doesn't want to put the operation at risk for some techy stuff he and his father lived quite well without, thank you.

Covetousness? Maybe at thirty, but not in the golden years. Not at least the way King James saw it.

Thy neighbor's wife? Sheesh, that kind of thing died years ago, thank goodness, when that infernal heat in the loins finally cooled off and ceased altogether. And who knows what on earth "maidservant" and "manservant" translates into these days anyway? Old guys I know don't want to be bothered by people at all, and certainly don't want to keep tabs on some long dang payroll.

Look, most old bucks don't go out at night anymore, period. We're the ones who say that nothing good happens after twelve--make that eight o'clock. Or earlier.

I'm not saying that getting old means slipping out of the very skin of sin. No sir, but when you grow in years you don't spend time and energy looking over your shoulder at what someone else has on his back or in his garage--or his bed, for that matter. You just want a good night's sleep.

You want to live in peace and quiet and spend your evenings in a good soft chair.

Okay, I'll give you that. Those of us who don't have one would really like--and might even covet--a good soft chair.

But in no way can you call that a sin.


Shannon Baker said...

It sounds like an interesting series. I will check it out

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Anonymous said...

"Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house,
thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife,
nor his manservant, nor his maidservant,
nor his ox, nor his ass,
nor any thing that is thy neighbour's."

Hey JCS, is their anything wrong with wishing for one just like it?