Jim Gaffigan on the perils of aging gracefully


Aging gracefully – is that the goal? We are supposed to age gracefully?

I don’t think I’ve ever been described as graceful. Lumbering, maybe. Now I’m supposed to be graceful when essentially my knees have completely stopped working?

Aging gracefully implies an acceptance, really the antithesis of Dylan Thomas’ “Do not go gentle into that good night.” Thomas encouraged us to fight off death and aging. Of course, Dylan Thomas died when he was only 39, so he never knew how inflexible knees are in your 50s.

I do admire those that seem to both “Not go gentle into that good night” and be graceful about it.  We all know Tom Brady has somehow stopped aging altogether, which is equally impressive and annoying. Then again, I don’t think Tom Brady eats bread, which to me sounds like a form of death.

The political world is filled with people that are so high functioning it is bewildering. Senator Chuck Grassley is 88 years old, and is not only seeking re-election but jogs three miles a day. Just thinking about that make my knees hurt.

I must admit when I ponder Senator Grassley and these politicians, I don’t contemplate gracefulness or cognitive abilities; I question my passion for life.

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Story produced by Amy Wall. Editor: Kevin McLaughlin. 

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