Welcome to the Misadventures of Widowhood blog!

In January of 2012 my soul mate of 42 years passed away after nearly 12 years of living with severe disabilities due to a stroke. I survived the first year after Don’s death doing what most widows do---trying to make sense of my world turned upside down. The pain and heartache of loss, my dark humor, my sweetest memories and, yes, even my pity parties are well documented in this blog.

Now that I’m a "seasoned widow" the focus of my writing has changed. I’m still a widow looking through that lens but I’m also a woman searching for contentment, friends and a voice in my restless world. Some people say I have a quirky sense of humor that shows up from time to time in this blog. Others say I make some keen observations about life and growing older. I say I just write about whatever passes through my days---the good, bad and the ugly. Comments welcome and encouraged. Let's get a dialogue going! Jean

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

What Old People Do For Fun

Have you ever seen a band that was so bad they were fun to watch? I did recently. They were playing at the senior hall monthly luncheon---four scruffy looking brothers, all old enough to collect social security. The lead singer/guitar player came hobbling in on a peg leg. He was wearing Bermuda shorts, a Hawaii shirt and a straw gambler’s style hat and his unruly, gray hair was longer than any woman’s in the room. But he had the most expressive, dark eyes I’ve seen in a long time and they twinkled with mischief the entire time he performed. He even danced a jig to everyone’s laughter that reminded me of a pirate from a Disney movie.

His twin brothers didn’t look much alike but you could tell they once did. One was bald and skinny and he played the keyboard. The other was fat, had a ridiculously long, white handlebar mustache and a long ponytail but no hair on the entire top of his head. The latter played the flute and a saxophone and the top of his head turned beet red when he was playing. A few times I worried he might pass out from the effort.

The forth brother, you could tell, though he was still pretty cool but he needed to ditch his Mom jeans and to learn not to blush so much at his brother’s teasing. Every time one of the guys would screw up a cord or the lyrics Mr. Peg Leg would wink at the crowd and say, “That’s the way we rehearsed it” and once he remarked, “Wow, we got through that whole chorus without a mistake!” which made the blushing brother red enough to match the top of his horn playing brother’s head. At one point they were all laughing so much they stopped playing, and one of the guys waved a hand in front of his face while saying, “Be at one with the song” and then they’d continue on playing as if nothing happened.

At another point the lead singer wanted us to sing along to a song that turned out to be a tribute to Amelia Earhart. If you shake my family tree she’d come tumbling out but surprise, surprise none of us knew the words…not even me. That didn’t matter to the band. Next they invited us to sing along to Knight in White Satin which I vaguely remembered from the ‘60s. They had better luck with audience participation with Old Time Rock N’ Roll. Obviously there were a few old Bob Seger fans in our group because we were belting that song out with the best of them. The last sing-along was You Are My Sunshine and you'd have to be brain dead not to remember that one from our youth. The sequence of sing-alongs was a good example of the band's quirky sense of humor.

A few ladies at my table of sixteen were wadding up Kleenex to stick in their ears and a couple ladies experimented with taking one or both of their hearing aids out. When the band asked if they were playing too loud, half the crowd yelled “No!” and the half yelled, “Yes!” so they didn’t change their volume one little bit. The whole show was so campy and corny and I had a great time and all that for five dollars including the food and door prizes which I never win. Once in awhile, though, I'd feel sorry for the band because hard of hearing people tend to talk too loud and I was worried the guys heard some of the negative reviews their music was getting. For me, it was fun watching the guys have so much fun and the screw ups didn't matter.

A nice thing also happened at the senior hall that day. Another widow asked me for my contact information so we can “do lunch” sometime. She’s a down-to-earth type and easy to talk to. Her husband died more recently than mine and she’s been fighting with her kids over purging the house of her husband's things. They want to go at it faster than she does which makes me grateful that I had/have the ability to set my own pace without pressure or input from anyone. ©

10 comments:

  1. I love me some Seger and Old Time Rock 'N Roll is my fave!!! I would really have enjoyed that band!!

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    1. They really were fun. I can't stop thinking about their silly one-liners.

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  2. Sounds like good times to me. Glad someone gave you their contact info. My husband plays golf with my brother-in-law when he's here for the summer. They live in Florida during the winter, and H has no one to play with. I told him he should get the contact info of someone the golf course matches him with sometimes. He did just that the other day. It was a guy who lost his wife recently.

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  3. I'll bet the widower appreciated that! Making friends at our age is so much harder than making friends when we were younger.

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  4. AND! Guess what?? I, too, exchanged info with a lady my age to get together soon. Her daughter and Kate were good friends in grade school and high school ... they both came over to meet Deacon! And the Mom suggested we get together! You just never know how or when a friendship may strike!

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    1. Very cool! Hope you two follow through. That's the hard part....I think.

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  5. Do many couples go to the senior center? Or mostly singles? Someday I might cross that thresh hold. Not planning to yet. How wonderful that a nice, down-to-earth woman suggested lunch with you. Hope you get together and kindle a friendship :-)

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    1. There are anywhere from 109 to 120 people who show up for events at the senior center and only 10-12 are men. Of the men, about half of those are half of a couple. It's definitely not a place a women would go to met men. LOL

      You reminded me of a comment my dad made when he was first widowed. He tried a few senior hall meetings but didn't like all the women "chasing him." He met a great woman at the bowling alley (where he could chase her, I guess) and they were a couple for over 10 years.

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    2. What a great story about your Dad! Mine avoids the senior citizen center, too. He went to some such event with his girlfriend, and she guarded him like a barracuda.

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