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Bits and Pieces

by Barrie Hopkins




Old Farts

I know my editors are going to no doubt do a double take and reach for their blue-leaded editing pencils when they first take a look at the slightly blatant title of this article.
Though a little renegade to customary practice, I also think that if time is taken to read it through, their minds, as mine, will rightfully be changed. After all, we are now gestating the 10th year of a brand-new century, and it’s definitely more difficult to keep pace with the rapidly changing flippancy of modern day tongues.
It came untangled to me, from a friend of mine, through the confusing technology of the computer and the magic of worldwide email. Realizing its humour as basic truth, I’m passing it on to you, as I’m feeling a little recalcitrant in being the only Old Fart who enjoyed reading it. Actually, in reality, there is comfort, contentment and a general reverence of well-being in being called an Old Fart - friend or no friend.
Old Farts are easy to spot at sporting events - during the playing of the national anthem, Old Farts remove their caps and stand at attention and sing without embarrassment. They know the words and believe in them. They return the caps to their heads with the peaks turned forward, knowing they’re so designed to protect the God given gift of sight.
Old Farts remember World War II, Pearl Harbor, Guadalcanal, Normandy and Hitler. They remember the horrors of the Atomic Age, Hiroshima, the Korean War, the Cold War, the Jet Age and the first giant step upon the moon. They remember the over 50 peacekeeping missions from 1945 to 2005, not to mention Vietnam.
If you bump into an Old Fart on the sidewalk, he will apologize.
If you pass an Old Fart on the street, he will nod or tip his cap to a lady.
Old Farts trust strangers and are courtly to women.
Old Farts hold the door for the next person and always, when walking, make certain the lady is on the inside for protection.
Old Farts get embarrassed if someone curses in front of women and children, and they don’t like any filth or dirty language in movies.
Old Farts have moral courage and personal integrity. They seldom brag unless it’s about their children or grandchildren.
It’s the Old Farts who know our great country is protected, not by our politicians, but by the young men and women in the military serving their country.
This country needs Old Farts, with their work ethics, sense of responsibility, pride in their country, their understanding and decent values. We need them now more than ever before.
I was taught to respect my elders. But at my age, it’s just getting harder to find them.
Thank God for those who understand and care for the Old Farts. Thank God for the Old Farts, and the knowledge they possess, who are left. I’m just the Old Fart and proud of it, who has been writing in the weekly paper that has been delivered free to your door for more years now than most care to remember. For many readers it was well before they were born.
Take care, ’cause we care.
barrie@barriehopkins.ca
519-843-4544

 
 

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Barrie Hopkins
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