“You Look Yummy!”

My Bride warned me there would be days like this. Forewarned is forearmed? Not really! It’s all a puzzle to me and needs explaining. Forgive my spam of narcissism.

I have reached the ripe old age of eighty-three and am in the latter stages of physical and mental decomposition. My Bride and I have found shelter in a beautiful corner of the city of Vancouver after living together in other cities of Canada, in Panama City, Panama and in Dublin, Ireland. We came together after living full lives with other partners, and parenting a generous offering of offspring to add to the world’s population. We have been blessed in this respect, but combined together too late for our own union, glorious and productive in many other ways, to be fruitful in this aspect of marriage. We content ourselves on this front with aspirations for our grandchildren, now themselves of marrying age.

We are among the more fortunate members of our cohort in enjoying relatively good health. I am quick to assure you that we have our share of troubles in order to banish the attentions of the evil eye. We persist among the walking wounded, turning up every weekday morning to join our more courageous companions at our neighborhood community center for yoga sessions and vigorous cardio routines. We are physically active and do not exhibit the more obvious signs of mental and bodily breakdown. We have our share of wandering wrinkles here and there to embellish our exteriors but do not yet offer the appearance of the mummified. We are definitely “a cute couple”.

In our neighborhood we seem to have accumulated numbers of seniors to form a more than usual fraction of the resident population. This we noted when we became residents. My Bride observed that in the nature of things we would find an inordinate number of widows among the general population. She warned me that, as a male with no obvious deformities, and still breathing, I might attract feminine attention. I was not to make anything of it as it did not indicate that I was in any way remarkable. She agreed I was attractive, at least in her eyes. As for my character, that was another question. I put it down to female strategy, always keep the guy on the back foot! I took the matter under advisement.

I had come across this kind of sentiment before. When I lost my second wife, my daughter warned me that I would be deluged with the attention of single women. She assured me that they would arrive at my door with tasty foodstuffs to seduce me, an assurance that at a minimum if I joined them, I would be well fed. In that instance there was never a knock at my door. In that environment, obviously, not only was I not remarkable, but I was unworthy of attention. I was not put off. I had already formulated a plan to secure the attentions of one I planned to have as my Bride-to-be.

These days, my Bride and I are fixtures in our community of oldsters. We are found mostly in one anothers’ company. We are not embarrassed to exhibit public displays of affection, reveling in our good fortune.. For a time we attended my cardio class together and our firm attachment to each other is well known. But, you know, you can never trust a guy. In the right circumstances he might show his real spots.

One morning, starting the new week with attendance at our regular cardio sessions, I began with my usual calisthenics to warm up my muscles from their week-end torpor. I was probably as disheveled as I normally am. I was approached by a woman, one of our regulars. We had been attending this class together with others for a number of years.

“Wow!” she shared with me, smilingly, “you look good!”

I smiled back.

“In fact,” she said, “you look yummy!”

I smiled and remaining as impassive as I could. The class began and we did not speak again.

Now, if I was a single fella, how could one fail to follow up an opening like that? Indeed, it is an outright challenge for any red-blooded western male in our culture. But I am not a “single fella”. I am a much married man who has found his redemption in the love of one who has occupied a central place in his mind since he was a teen-ager. I am sure that the individual who had the exquisite taste and greatness of spirit to share with me her opinion of my many endowments, knew full well that I am solidly attached to the central pillar of my existence. But, as they say, one never really knows! Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

I recognize the dynamic of our societal situation and cling firmly to the belief, as my Bride told me, that I am not remarkable. We live amidst a rampant hunger by individuals forced by fate and male fragility into a more solitary life than they would like. On my side there is surely a dark and private place in my fantasies, hidden away from public view, where I am eager to shine up my ego to a bright luster. That is where this tidbit of experience resides.

It was nice to hear it, anyway. “Yummy”, she said! That can’t be all bad.