Remember back in the l970s’s the Orgasm-Atron in the movie, Everything You Wanted to Know About Sex But Were Afraid to Ask? A character would walk into what looked like a space-age telephone booth. After a few minutes of twirling around inside he would come out totally refreshed after being pleasured beyond compare.
...Going to see your 87 year-old parent in a Care Facility is nothing like that.
Saturday is Pub Afternoon. For two bucks you can have a glass of wine or beer. It’s much needed. For an hour there is live entertainment. It’s much appreciated. There are also other Adult Children Caregivers there. We catch up on the latest dramas of the operating oligarchy in charge. It’s much required. It is there at Pub afternoons I realize that old people just want to enjoy themselves and have a good time.
One day, the lithe and impish Recreation director even held an Oscars Challenge for the residents. It turned into a lively exchange between the with it, and not so with it.
I have my own theories about dementia being a kind of ‘lift off’ into whatever it is that follows this absurd time on earth. I think the people who get more distraught about it, are the ones on the outside of it. I’ve come to believe that my mother - who is one on the inside of it is having a quite lovely time. Some movie is playing in her head, in her own time for her alone and I think that’s ok. That Oscar day, I tuned in with vigour and interest to see what would happen.
Everyone loved this guy. He was kind and funny, thoughtful and fun.
He said, "now there was a movie about slavery that came out in 2013...anyone know know what that was called?”
A just arrived elderly lady called out: “Porgy and Bess...?”
“…No...it was a few years earlier than that.”
She had the floor and wasn’t going to let go: “…because who wants to be a slave, right? I mean, I’ve been one all my life....”
“Yes,” he said addressing her, “but in this movie....”
You get what I am getting at.
Not about to be detoured, the woman kept up with her movie memory monologue: “...I saw Henry Fonda once in Hollywood, and then I saw him once more incognito....”
Yes, I’m sure you did, I muttered under my breath as she continued into a sweet reverie about Peter O’Toole in Lawrence of Arabia.”...he wasn’t white, was he?”
As I sat there, I thought; all in all you just have to swim in this river called, ‘Sweet And Nutty’ to get the full flavour of what surely lies ahead for most of us.
That is, until my mother got into the act, saying she wanted to see her favourite movie star in her favourite movie.
The recreation guy, innocently prompted her with what you might expect a 90 year old woman would remember.
“No!” she wiggled in her chair, “My Patrick Swayze in Dirty Dancing.”
Like I said, it’s not the Orgasm-Atron, but it is something.