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Help Wanted: I Don't Understand "Mature" Male Behavior

Barbara Morris, R.Ph.
Jul 27, 2008
Help me understand: Why are some (many?) old guys loud and grabby -- and disgusting?

I was in McDonald's the other day and two decrepit looking Old Geezers in 1970s polyester disco attire swaggered up to the counter behind which were two smiling teen age girls ready to take their order. One of the Old Geezers reached across the counter to grab the arm of one of the girls, while loudly proclaiming his love for her. She giggled and stepped back toward the manager who was standing nearby taking it all in. The other teen stepped back to avoid a possible grab from the other old guy. Judging from the interaction between the teens and the Old Geezers, the girls knew these two pests and knew how to deal with them.

But you know what? Grabby geezers don't discriminate on the basis of age. More than once at the pharmacy I have been grabbed by an old guy claiming to need help in choosing an over the counter product. I would leave the safety of the pharmacy and go out on the floor to help and wham! An arm around my waist -- in the presence of a wife, no less. It's enough to make you want to barf.

What causes Old Geezers to lose their dignity? Are they not aware when they are being disgusting? Why do they think young women -- any women -- appreciate their obnoxious behavior? Old women don't hassle young boys because (a) they have more sense and (b) they'd be cited for contributing to the delinquency of minors and or (c) they'd be committed to a mental hospital for observation. But wait--am I giving old women too much credit for having good judgment? On TV the other day a sixty year old female teacher was accused of having sex with male students. They need to lock her up and throw away they key. But that's a subject for another day.

So, what is it with the old guys? Testosterone gone wild? Not likely Sixty percent of older men have a severe loss of testosterone. The result is that in their memory they are still teenage studs but in reality they are over the hill. It's hard for them to come to terms with the phenomenon.

I asked the girls if they appreciated the attention. Again they giggled and one of them replied, "Oh, those old guys are just lonely."

Yeah. For sure. But they were also lacking common sense -- a hallmark of senility.

On top of the Old Geezers' grabby behavior, they were LOUD. You have probably noticed that when a gaggle of these old guys get together in a public place you can hear their conversation a mile away. I don't think they are loud because they are deaf -- they can speak in a more subdued tone when they choose to. I think the answer is that they behave that way because they are in their second childhood.

By contrast, at another eatery, at a nearby table, several young construction workers were having a discussion. I couldn't tell what it was about because they weren't loud. But get this: As they left, one of the men stopped at my table and said, "I'm sorry if we were loud." I was flabbergasted. I assured him they weren't loud and that he was a nice man for being so thoughtful. "We have to think of others," he replied. Amen to that. Maybe that's the answer: the Old Geezers have lost their ability to think of others.

The moral of the story is that distracting and unseemly "old" behavior is a hallmark of "old" people. It has nothing to do with chronological age. It has everything to do with judgment, being considerate of others and keeping your dignity. Being over sixty doesn't give you a license to act like an old fool, unless of course, you are senile.
About the Author
Barbara Morris is a pharmacist and anti-aging consultant. She is author of Put Old on Hold and publishes a monthly newsletter. Signup at http://www.PutOldonHold.com and receive a free copy of "Thirteen Tested Tips for Fabulous Skin."
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