Some years back following his death in 2009, I came across a passage about Walter Cronkite and his Rules For Old Men. As I was not old at the time, I set them aside for future reference. “They might come in handy one day.”
Then I forgot about them until the other day when what I believed to be a fart left a brown stain on my bathrobe. “Never trust a fart.” I laughed out loud and went looking for Walter’s rules. So here they are:
Walter Cronkite’s rules for old men:
1. Never trust a fart.
2. Never pass up a drink.
3. Never ignore an erection.
The first one we already covered. The second one speaks for itself and is just as true as the first. When someone offers you a drink or a compliment, just accept it as a gesture of appreciation and gratitude. The person making the offer likes you, enjoys your company, or needs someone to talk with. It does not matter. You don’t have to drink it or deny it (a compliment). Just say a gracious “Thank you.” Accept the drink or compliment because the person making the offer also needs some degree of acceptance from you. We all do.
Which brings us to number three. After my first heart attack, the doctor placed me on the standard array of medications for a heart attack victim: blood thinners, muscle relaxers, cholesterol reducers, etc.. during which time I could not have an erection. As I did not wish to take that little blue pill, I accepted the lack of an erection as part of my life post heart attack. After much research on my own and with other doctors, I eventually stopped taking six of the seven medications I was prescribed. When I did, my erections returned. Now when I wake up in the middle of the night with an erection, I have a greater appreciation for something I once took for an absolute in my youth. Although I do not have anyone to share it with, I look upon it with admiration. I now see it as an object of beauty.
I would like to add one more rule to Uncle Walter’s excellent Rules For Old Men:
4. Never past up an opportunity to take a pee.