Observations prompted by unknown literary giants

By Gerre Joiner | Published Saturday, March 7, 2015

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I’ve been doing a little research on aging. The experts call it “geriatrics.”

Gerre Joiner

Gerre Joiner

Here are a few observations from writers more proficient and profound than I. I’m thinking if I give them credit, there’s no foul regarding copyright laws. The story underneath the literary quote is mine. No chance of it being copyrighted.


“I love how babies look like old people. I saw a baby the other day that looked exactly like my grandpa, only taller.” – Jarod Kintz, “This Book is Not FOR SALE”

I’ve written about this coffee shop event before, so I won’t go into much detail here. It was tall girl’s first day working at Whataburger.

Short little old man in our group says, “I’ll bet you played a lot of basketball while you were growing up.”

Immediately this personable young lady says, “… and I’ll bet you played a lot of miniature golf.”


“Older people shouldn’t eat health food; they need all the preservatives they can get.” – Robert Orben

I’m not criticizing Whataburger’s breakfast menu here, but my friend, Billy, who takes my taquito order each morning, asks, “Do you want a dripper or a no-dripper?” (No-dripper every time for me.)


“The old sleep poorly. Perhaps they stand watch.” – Stephen King, “Pet Sematary”

We have men who start the day at Whataburger around 4:30 in the morning. Can’t figure the attraction associated with sitting in a pretty-much empty restaurant with all your friends (no one) and drinking coffee.


“Mr. Landowsky was 82 and somehow his chest had shrunk over the years, and now he was forced to hike his pants up under his armpits. ‘Oi,’ he said. ‘This heat! I can’t breathe. Somebody should do something.’ I assumed he was talking about God. He was talking about the weatherman on the morning news.” – Janet Evanovich, “Four to Score”

A couple of things regarding our coffee shop group:

  • We do talk about the weather a lot. Hardly anyone has a good thing to say about the weatherman. Occasionally there is an observation about a nice-looking weather woman. The comment is not always tied to a meteorological event.
  • There are a few of our guys who wear their pants up under their armpits. Some of our guys wear striped overalls. There’s a strong rumor that one of those guys goes “commando.”


“Why do old people drive slow? They have the least amount of time left on earth, so you’d think they’d drive the fastest, to make the best use of what little time they have.” – Jarod Kintz, “A Zebra is the Piano of the Animal Kingdom”

One of our guys is kind of on the ropes with the Department of Public Safety. His medical history makes the people at DPS kind of touchy about turning him loose to drive just anywhere.

My friend complained, “If I can’t drive, how am I going to get to Bowie Trade Days?”

The DPS lady told him exactly how to get there by using back roads and alleys. (I made up some of that one.)


“There’s no accounting for the opinions of old ladies. They think everyone is cute.” – Shannon Wiersbitzky, “What Flowers Remember”

Not sure who this Wiersbitzky lady is, but our old men have never been accused of being “cute” by anyone. Ever.

Gerre Joiner is a semi-retired church musician and has lived in Decatur since 1999.

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