Friday, July 9, 2010

Boomer Expo

Sweet Holy Moses!  What a day!

Understanding the use of exclamation points is frowned upon, I expect you’ll recognize the importance of their appearance to open this post.  What I did today is not something I would, or for that matter could, have foreseen myself taking part in.  Yet it was real.  All too real.

A writer friend named Jeanne Krause was having a book signing.  I headed on down, knowing only the information contained in the preceding sentence.  Had I any notion this book signing was part of Boomer Expo 2010, I could have at least prepared.  Somewhat.

But what preparation would have been appropriate?  For Boomer Expo is not your average hotel convention.  White hair, (in addition to silver, blue and fluorescent red) walkers, hove-arounds, and confused anger surrounded me.

“Where can I get some water?” an old lady shouted at me.

“Did you try the drinking fountain, near the restrooms?” I asked.

She threw up an annoyed hand and shuffled away.

There were celebrity impersonators.  Sean Connery and a dude dressed like Marilyn Monroe. 

You could buy those chairs that raise up to help old people stand.  And if you’re beyond that point, there was even a booth with a casket.  Oddly, the Neptune Society was a no show.  Too much competition?  Seemed like their kind of crowd.

Oldsters abounded.  And they were pushy.  When you don’t have much time left, politeness must be sacrificed.    Sadly, not too many were in a rush to buy Jeanne’s book.  They asked about it.  Seemed quite taken with her display.  Jeanne had set out some candy and they swarmed the table like locusts.  The candy didn’t make it.  Jeanne had even decorated her booth with some Mardi Gras beads.  Someone swiped them.

I found the whole thing rather amusing.  Not so my companion, another of our critique group members, who claimed to be the same age as the Boomers, but insisted she was not of their ilk.  She wanted desperately to leave, lest their behavior rub off on her.

I’m not doing it near the justice it deserves.  I suggest you see it for yourselves.  Four busloads of old people running rampant has to be experienced to be appreciated.  If Boomer Expo shows up in your town, do check it out.


Charmaine Clancy said...

My dad took me to his 'rock n roll' dance group at the local club the other night - old people can be scary! A lot of sweet old grandmas were dressed like teenage hookers, I've never seen so much exposed crinkles. I don't think I could handle a rampage of them, but sounds like you found some good characters to stick in the WIP vault. :-)

Ted Cross said...

See, now I think you should be retired when you are young and in the best shape of your life, then they should put you to work once you start going downhill. I'd just be getting into my career now, after having a long, great blast through my thirties!

Abby said...

My grandma would be one of those crowd... she'd totally go crazy for the candy. Free candy! yay! But grandma, don't you have diabetes?

Travener said...

Hey! Not all! of us Boomers! are (really) that old! Yet!

Anyway, we had Woodstock, and all you had was Donkey Kong. So there.

Matt said...

Travener - That was one of the bests laughs of my day. And I've just discovered people of walmart