Welcome to Bud’s Blog

Posted March 1, 2009 by oldereyes
Categories: feeling older

The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes – Marcel Proust

Sometimes Older Eyes work, too Bud

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Necessary Definitions

Sage – a wise man; a man of gravity and wisdom; especially, a man venerable for years, and of sound judgment and prudence.

Curmudgeon – an ill-tempered old person full of stubborn ideas or opinions.

Fool – A person with poor judgment or little intelligence; a jester, a person whose role was to entertain a sovereign and the court, often with foolishness.
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I’ve been wondering lately what it would be like to be able to relive my life knowing what I know now. Or if I was able to give my grown children a view of the world through my Older Eyes, would it change their lives? Here’s a provocative proposition: If I could get every twenty-year old to look at the world through sixty-four year old eyes for just a few minutes, it would either change them for the better or kill them. Provocative but probably not true. I doubt there are many young men making bucket lists as a result of watching Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman.

With a do-over unlikely and getting my children to listen to my archaic opinions only slightly less so, I’ll record the view through my Older Eyes here in Bud’s Blog.   As you read each post, you decide … Sage, Curmudgeon, or Fool … we can agree to disagree on which is which. Your comments are welcome, whatever your age.   If what you read changes you for the better, I’d especially like to know.   Hopefully there will be no casualties.   If you are new here and want a taste of my Older Perspective before diving in, The Best of Feeling Older offers a few of my favorite posts on aging.  Finally, if my work inspires you to try blogging … or even if you think, Jeez, I can do this better than Older Eyes – there are a series of posts on doing just that on my page, Starting a WordPress Blog.

ABCD … LGBT

Posted June 26, 2017 by oldereyes
Categories: opinion

Tags: ,

prejudiiceWhen I was a teenager, my Mom and I had a discussion about prejudice and racism, in particular.  I don’t remember what precipitated such a discussion but it was likely news of some atrocity that had taken place in the South toward Negros.  That was the proper name back then.   My Mom told me that by the time I was her age, there would be no more racism because all the races would have intermarried, creating a single race.  Little did I know then how far her prediction would fall from the truth but it remains a fond memory of the kind of woman my mother was.  A few years later, I would join the first interracial fraternity at the University of Connecticut where I’d have the life-changing experience of talking civil rights as the only white guy in a room of African Amercan (by then, the proper term) brothers. At college, I would meet a pretty Jewish girl who would become my wife and I’d study the world’s religions (against the advice of my pastor, by the way).  I’d like to say I graduated without any prejudices but in a world full of ethnic and religious slurs, it is all too easy to reach for one in my head, even if I don’t say it. And of course, there were new prejudices to deal with as life went on, ones that were at least tacitly acceptable in my young adulthood. Read the rest of this post »

A Father’s Day Story

Posted June 18, 2017 by oldereyes
Categories: fatherhood

Tags: , , , ,

buddyWhen my Dad got out of the service, we moved to small apartment on the Boulevard in New Haven, Connecticut.   As I recall, it was a refurbished Army barracks.  My mom told me that when the wind blew, you could feel it through the walls.  I am fortunate to have some pictures of our years there but my memories of the Boulevard are sparse and dimly lighted.   I do remember them as good times.   There were tons of kids to play with, my parents had lots of friends (many of whom they kept touch with through most of their lives) and there was lots of space to play baseball or tag on the apartment grounds, even if it was mostly dirt.   What more could a kid ask for?

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Just Breathe

Posted June 16, 2017 by oldereyes
Categories: curmudgeonly rants

Tags: , , , , ,

breathMy sister is a trained Yoga instructor.  If you have ever done Yoga … or practically any meditation technique … you know that proper breathing is part of the way to a relaxed, mindful state.   Through the nose, breathe into your belly, then gently expel through the mouth.  Notice how it feels on the inhale and how it feels different when you exhale.  Breath in light.  Breath out negativity.  You get the picture.  When my Dad was in assisted living, his primary caretaker was my sister, since she lived less than an hour away, while I live in California and our brother lives in Ohio.  Whenever my Dad was agitated about something, my sister would say, Just Breathe, Dad.  Just Breathe.  My Dad, disinclined toward Yoga or any other New Age nonsense, would answer, I am breathing.  Sometimes, I am breathing, dammit. Interestingly, though he never followed my sister’s suggestion, his annoyance would distract him enough from whatever was bothering him and he would indeed end up less agitated. Read the rest of this post »

Old Softies

Posted June 16, 2017 by oldereyes
Categories: feeling older

Tags: , , , ,

bud and dadTwice a week, I find myself in rooms with many men who grew up with difficult, even abusive fathers, men who say things like, I know my father loved me, even if he couldn’t show it.   I am fortunate to have had a father who made it clear that he loved me, more often by his actions than his words.  Was he difficult?  Not by the standards of my friends in those rooms.  Still, he could be a strict disciplinarian with a quick hand (as was the nature of discipline back then) and he had a tendency to push me toward being better by pointing out the things I didn’t do well instead of my successes (also more common back then).  He was a man of few words.  My uncle once said to me, Your Dad doesn’t have much to say but when he does, he sure knows what he’s talking about.   Dad wasn’t given to emotional or philosophical discussions … that was the province of my Mom.  No one ever called my Dad a Softie and if they had, he’d likely have considered it insulting. Read the rest of this post »

Memorial Day 2017

Posted May 29, 2017 by oldereyes
Categories: feeling older

Tags: , ,

vietnam mem

I graduated from college in 1966, just as U.S. combat troops were being deployed in Vietnam. It was perhaps our most unpopular war, and like many young men, I was opposed to the war … giving the world the odd sight of a grey Volvo with a peace sticker parking in the lot of one of our nation’s largest defense contractors. Back then, our military was largely based on the draft, something that I was able to avoid because of my job. Was that fair? Maybe not but I am sure I was a better as a designer of submarine equipment than I ever would have been as a soldier. It was perhaps a low point in our history with conservatives shouting, My country right or wrong, and protestors chanting, Hey, hey LBJ, how many kids have you killed today? It seemed to be a war fought without a real will to win. I had a friend who served and returned with tales of being sent out on Search and Destroy missions, only to call in air support having found the enemy and find none was available. Students protesting the war were shot by soldiers at Kent State University and returning soldiers were harassed by anti-war protesters in airports. Read the rest of this post »

Maui at Seventy Three

Posted May 21, 2017 by oldereyes
Categories: perspectives

Tags: , , , , ,

Since my wife Muri and I moved to California in 1971, we have vacationed in Maui 7 times.  The first time we were here with our good friends, Don and Jackie, we spent half the time on Oahu and half the time at Napili Bay (perhaps the prettiest bay on Maui).   The second time, we brought our two children and spent time on both Maui and Kauai.   While Kauai is beautiful and less 

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Seven Tee Three

Posted May 20, 2017 by oldereyes
Categories: feeling older

Since I started blogging in 2009, it has been traditional to post something here on Older Eyes – Bud’s Blog for my birthday, which is today.  May 20, 1944.   A long time ago.  A long scroll down the list of years when you are required to provide your birthdate online.   A very different time and place than I inhabit at Seven T Three. I spent my first year living with my Mom and grandparents while Dad served in Italy, then in a bud 1950smodest apartment in New Haven, Connecticut.   If I look at my life now, I’d have to say we didn’t have much but I had a loving, attentive family and lots of friends. According to firsthingsfirst.org,  Recent scientific research has shown that the connections needed for many important, higher-level abilities – like motivation, self-regulation, problem solving, communication and self-esteem – are formed in these early years. Or not formed. And it’s much harder for these essential brain connections to be made later in life.   When I was five, I told a neighbor I wanted to be a nuclear physicist, so I guess those first five years served me well.  Thank you, Mom and Dad.

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