Death is not distant, it’s inevitable, and ever-closer.

No one knows anything. Confidence is a front. Everybody is insecure.

No one cares about your SAT scores unless they aced the test.

We’re all lonely looking to be connected.

You’ll regret choices earlier in your life, but you’ll accept them.

You’ll want the decade back when you were lost and drifting.

You’re never going to recover from some physical ills, aches and pains are part of the process of dying, and that’s what you’re doing, every day.

Women inject their lips to look good to other women, the same way they buy and wear trendy outfits and shoes. Men just want someone who will listen to them, soothe them and have sex with them.

Your parents said television was the idiot box, and you feel guilty every time you watch for hours, but you’re addicted.

Being good-looking is overrated. Sure, it opens some doors, but it stunts you in other ways. Character is built by challenges, if you avoid them, you’re at a loss.

Having friends is better than having money.

If you were never on the path to riches, you will never be rich.

Doors are closing every day. If there’s something you want to do, start now.

Acceptance is no easier than it was when you were five, but it’s necessary in order to soldier on.

You really want to be involved with someone your own age, because no matter how attractive a younger person might be, they do not get the references.

If a couple says they have no arguments, their divorce is imminent. Or one member lives in quiet desperation, fearful of stating their truth.

People let you down.

Everybody is out for themselves. They make decisions accordingly. Don’t take it personally.

Some people were dead at thirty. It’s a full time job trying to stay alive.

Most of what you learned in school you’ve already forgotten.

You lament they didn’t have calculators in school when you were forced to use a slide rule.

Where you went to college doesn’t matter, unless it was Harvard or Yale, because those are clubs whose members open doors for each other.

If you’re working for the man, it’s just a matter of time before you lose your job.

You probably won’t make as much money as your parents.

You probably drive a worse car every time you get a new one. Once upon a time you could afford a Volvo, now you drive a Camry.

People are dying to tell you their story. Ask them questions. They’ll tell you everything.

You’ll become more comfortable in your own skin.

You’ll be happier.

You’ll stop doing things you don’t want to do. Actually, this happens not long after you move out of your parents’ house.

You’ll stop being fascinated by that which consumed you previously. Sports may become meaningless.

You won’t know who the people they’re talking about in “People” and the rest of the gossip rags are, and you won’t care.

You’ll realize no one leaves their mark, except for a few people who didn’t know they were doing so, so it’s a futile pursuit.

Wrinkles only bother those who have them. Beauty changes when we get older. We’re looking for a glint in the eye, a sense of satisfaction and adventure.

If you’re up for anything, we’re attracted to you.

No one can keep a secret.

There are truly rich people and chances are you’re not one of them. Unless you’ve got a friend, you’ll rarely get the best seat, you’ll rarely get preferential treatment. You don’t want to see yourself as one of the unwashed masses, but you are.

You don’t want to be President.

Life is topsy-turvy, just because someone’s successful today, that does not mean they will be so tomorrow.

Even the best and the brightest have kids who screw up.

Not everybody has to go to college to be successful, although this is impossible for parents to accept when their children drop out.

People oftentimes don’t want to hear the truth, you’ll have trouble getting ahead if you don’t know when to hold your tongue.

Everybody gets cancer, if you ain’t got it, your time is coming.

You think you want to live forever, but you don’t, because none of your friends will be around to share it with.

There are two types of people, those who want to retire and those who don’t.

There are two types of people, those who prepared for retirement and those who didn’t, and some have to continue to work when they don’t want to.

Your health may not allow you to continue to work, even if you want to.

It’s fun learning what the people you grew up with are up to, but you really don’t want to hang with any of them that you weren’t hanging with before the Internet.

People don’t change. Certainly not unless they want to. So expect the person who bugged you in school to still bug you as an adult. And know that chances are you can never ever get back together with your ex because what caused the breakup back then still exists.

Marriage is hard.

Divorce is even harder.

Sometimes life is better with a new partner, but sometimes it’s not.

People who want to make you feel inadequate feel inadequate themselves.

Not everybody grows up, some are still bullies.

People who would hit you as kids won’t hit you as an adult, mostly because they’re afraid of the lawsuit.

The biggest rebel in school is complacent as an adult.

Some of your best friends will become Republicans.

Some of your best friends will retreat to religion.

You’ll laugh at those trying to look younger, or follow their lead down the path of inadequacy.

You’ll regret you stopped piano lessons.

You’ll see the passing of your parents as a precursor to your own demise. Once they’re gone, you’re next.

You’ll love making references to old movies and songs.

Unless you have children, the Top Forty will become meaningless.

You’ll be stunned that the biggest TV shows and stars of yore will become forgotten as time goes by.

You’ll be more interested in the news, and more interested in politics.

You’ll think it was better when you were young.

Even though you are closer to death, you won’t want to be young again. You had so many questions, you were so angst-ridden, you were searching. As the cliche goes, youth is wasted on the young.

The key to longevity is letting go of the past.

You’ll look back at one specific time in your life when you were happiest, and you’ll discover the people who shared the experience agree with you.

You’ll hear from all your significant others, looking for…what they’re not sure.

You’ll recognize hype for what it is. And become disillusioned by it and advertising.

You’ll realize every generation has a teen phenom, a boy band that captures girls’ hearts that fades away.

Stars who can’t go out in public during their heyday will be at the mall buying keys and no one will pay attention to them.

Being famous is overrated, you treasure your anonymity.

Life is for the living, so live it up!


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Category: Philosophy, Think Tank

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

13 Responses to “What You Learn When You’re 60”

  1. peacock says:

    You will meet people who have noble professions like doctor, engineer, lawyer, writer. When you get to know them you realize they chose their profession primarily for the high salary.

  2. MidlifeNocrisis says:

    Disagree with regards to the married couple and arguments. It is possible for both members to live their own truths and have those truths mutually accepted….. If this is not the case, then you are still too young to know. One of the joys of growing old together.

  3. kangarouge says:

    A great, laugh out loud list. The only point I would really disagree with is that you become more interested in the news. I agree with Nassim Taleb that ignoring the news is a very good idea, because if something is important enough it will find its way to you. Also because news reporting has become increasingly corporatized and patriotic, with fewer and fewer prepared to blurt the truth.

  4. Molesworth says:

    “We’re all lonely looking to be connected.”
    Not all of us are lonely.

    “Women inject their lips to look good to other women,”
    Some may. Most I know do it so they can stand to look at themselves in the mirror again. Know that and you’ll understand a lot about women.

  5. GeorgeBurnsWasRight says:

    I’d add you’ll spend time coming up with strategies to minimize the impact of various physical ailments which don’t seem to be going away, and your memory, which does seem to have gone away forever.

  6. Iamthe50percent says:

    68 and none of the above.

  7. theexpertisin says:

    An interesting a exhaustive list. Since I fit the 60 category, I’ll add….

    Retirement means something different to practically everybody. Find your own way.
    Golf and boating are over rated. Experiencing work in a field for the love of it is under rated.
    If you played a legitimate musical instrument, dust it off and join a community orchestra or band.
    Choosing a spouse correctly the first time is a wonderful investment with a superb return.
    When a a different life experience presents itself, say YES.
    Treat your children and grandchildren with an equal measure of love and treasure, regardless.
    Choose your retirement location carefully. When in doubt, go South.
    When the option to discuss politics or anything else presents itself, choose anything else.
    If a male, embrace premium cigars.

  8. Clif Brown says:

    Far too long a list. The author should look over them all and get it down to about ten, then there might be a chance of profundity. Right now it’s a grab bag of wandering thoughts.

  9. ralphwl says:

    Eventually they all get caught ith their pants down.

    Death and taxes really are the only sure things.

    Death only matters, if life is all there is.

  10. Bomber Girl says:

    decent list but don’t try to figure out, explain, or otherwise proclaim to know anything about why women do things. Just the facts, ma’am. (sic)


  11. ERISANation says:

    “Everybody is out for themselves. They make decisions accordingly. Don’t take it personally.”

    But everything is personal and everybody takes it personally.

  12. [...] What you learn when you are 60.  (Bob Lefsetz) [...]