How does it feel to be 100?
July 8, 2013 12:08 PM   Subscribe

A New York woman turned 100 recently and she only has one thing on her mind. (NSFW)
posted by gman (54 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
Alzheimer's is a terrible disease.
posted by sonic meat machine at 12:17 PM on July 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


100 years old and still having fun. Good for her. I hope that's me when I'm 100.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 12:19 PM on July 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Keeping death's watch at bay.
posted by stbalbach at 12:19 PM on July 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


More sad, than funny.
posted by Mojojojo at 12:19 PM on July 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


If it's Alzheimers that makes you want the d I think maybe a lot of people are in trouble.
posted by elizardbits at 12:20 PM on July 8, 2013 [12 favorites]


That woman knows exactly what she's doing. And it's kind of awesome. If I lived to be 100 years old and some reporter came to my house to ask me some lame questions about what I think it "means to be 100" I hope I'd have the good sense to say dicks too.
posted by Lutoslawski at 12:22 PM on July 8, 2013 [11 favorites]


Dick is coming.
posted by The Whelk at 12:23 PM on July 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


"Grandma, don't talk about dick, talk about the good stuff , ok"

"The good stuff is the dicks!"
posted by Doleful Creature at 12:28 PM on July 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


The reporter looks uncomfortable; he appears to laugh along politely, trying to nudge the interview forward. The family seems amused at first, but quickly becomes embarrassed. The daughter's pleading is indeed sad. She explains to her mother that the woman raised her family to be good and kind people, and here's an opportunity to tell people about that and feel proud, and instead all they get is obscenity.

That woman knows exactly what she's doing.

Maybe, maybe not. I can't tell from the video. But I can see the reactions of the reporter and the woman's family members, and it doesn't look to me like a room full of people who collectively decided to have some lighthearted fun. (Which would be totally fine and silly, if that's what happened.) It looks sad.
posted by cribcage at 12:28 PM on July 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


To me it looks like a room full of people who have a strong idea of what 100 should be, and a lady who has a much better idea of what 100 is, and has the experience to know just how seriously to take "should". And the room full of people is trying like hell to make that lady conform to their straitjacket.
posted by straw at 12:32 PM on July 8, 2013 [16 favorites]


OTOH maybe the old woman is tired of having her entire life dictated to her by people who "know what's best" for her, and with the reporter she thinks she finally has a voice to say what she really wants. We don't know. I love it, I think she's a hoot.
posted by xedrik at 12:32 PM on July 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


This poor woman probably has dementia. I was disgusted when Clutch posted this a couple of days ago on their site and almost everybody pointed and laughed. I'm feeling the same way seeing it posted here. Moms Mabley must be spinning in her grave.
posted by fuse theorem at 12:35 PM on July 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


Wow, there's a lot of doctors in the room.
posted by gman at 12:37 PM on July 8, 2013 [26 favorites]


I feel like the 100dicks tag doesn't see enough action, so props for that.

Also, I got the impression that this woman just has a bawdy sense of humor. I have a tiny, 300-and-something-year-old great-aunt just like her, and you'd never catch her without a martini in her hand and an inappropriate joke on her tongue. Good times!
posted by heyho at 12:38 PM on July 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


the old woman is tired of having her entire life dictated to her by people who "know what's best" for her

Less dictators, more dick and taters.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 12:38 PM on July 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


You know, after living 100 years on this planet I reckon this lady is entitled to some free-form go nuts fun even if it embarrases people around her.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 12:42 PM on July 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


When I am an old woman I shall wear purple
With a red hat which doesn't go, and doesn't suit me.
And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves
And satin sandals, and say we've no money for butter.
I shall sit down on the pavement when I'm tired
And gobble up samples in shops and press alarm bells
And run my stick along the public railings
And make up for the sobriety of my youth.
I shall go out in my slippers in the rain
And pick flowers in other people's gardens
And learn to spit.
posted by cashman at 12:44 PM on July 8, 2013 [16 favorites]


I assume people are jumping to 'dementia' because of this false concept that old ladies always have to be proper sweet wise old creatures, instead of old folks having fun and fucking with young folks the way god intended.
posted by naju at 12:49 PM on July 8, 2013 [18 favorites]


I prefer to be buttered.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:54 PM on July 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Yeah - and you know what, maybe she does want some fucking dick! Why can't she? Who's to say all her physical pleasure has to be dead?

Is it possible it could be dementia? Sure it's possible. I can't say, I'm not a doctor.

What I see is:

1) Trolling Grandma
2) Missing physical affection Grandma

Combined into this moment. Why does anybody have the right to tell her what is or isn't proper? Like Foci said... 100 years and this planet, she is entitled to it!

And some people like grannies, and I am sure there would be some young fellows out there who would readily oblige her, and maybe after seeing this she will get some dick. Maybe not 100... But at least 1? I hope so, because she deserves it.
posted by symbioid at 12:55 PM on July 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Mustardayonnaise, for me, please!
posted by symbioid at 12:56 PM on July 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


If my relatives with dementia were half this happy, I'd be bloody over the moon. She may or may not have dementia. What she is having is fun. She's laughing her head off, and that's the important thing. Does it matter whether she's trolling deliberately or accidentally? No. Yeah, she's embarrassing some of her family (and I think only some of them), but it's not their birthday, it's hers!

Dementia often brings out home truths. Almost all of the ones that came out from my family were nasty. I'd have taken this over those any time.
posted by Coobeastie at 1:04 PM on July 8, 2013 [18 favorites]


Can't believe nobody brought up Alan Arkin as "The Voice of Experience" yet.

I thought this was great. To laugh like that, at that age. To be that inappropriate. Awesome!
posted by phaedon at 1:09 PM on July 8, 2013


No, we're not "being doctors" here, nor are we "dictating what 100yo women should be". We're reacting to the solid fact that members of grandma's close family seem surprised and upset at her out-of-character language, which is more consistent with personality-changing dementia than it is with someone who waited an entire century before deciding to start acting ribald in front of them.

I've been around a 100yo woman with a strong mind who wasn't afraid to speak it on her centennial birthday. She surprised no one but me (I'd just met her). This isn't the same as that.
posted by IAmBroom at 1:16 PM on July 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


I assume people are jumping to 'dementia' because of this false concept that old ladies always have to be proper sweet wise old creatures, instead of old folks having fun and fucking with young folks the way god intended.

You would be making a wrong assumption. Betty White is probably making a killing now doing this kind of shtick and I think she's a riot.

It just looked to me like this video was deliberately made and posted (and re-posted under multiple YouTube accounts, some of which are probably getting money from it) so people would make fun of this woman. I'm glad she appears to be having a good time but to me it also looks like she's being taken advantage of.
posted by fuse theorem at 1:17 PM on July 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


the room full of people is trying like hell to make that lady conform to their straitjacket.

That seems bizarre to me. I actually agree in a sense, but it's a weird way to frame it. This wasn't some random low-key family gathering where somebody indulged some crazy-obscene silliness and suddenly everybody got all Stiffly Stifferson on her. The family had a TV crew standing in their living room filming a segment for the local news. That's the straitjacket, so to speak. It's not about how to be prim and proper at 100.

"Hey Grandma, quit telling the newsman that you want dick" doesn't strike me as being oppressively conformist.
posted by cribcage at 1:20 PM on July 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


I think part of it is that her family may be reacting to "oh, neat, grandma is gonna be on the news!" with the oh shiiiiit realization that, no, she's not gonna be if she keeps talking about ye olde d. You can sort of see this in how the reporter talks about it toward the end, that he's acknowledging that he got a workable sound bit that wasn't about dicks early on and he can work with that, he'll just stop fishing for more soundbites now since the lady's got his number.

But it's a weird and complicated thing because a lot of this does come down to just trying to read into this from the outside.
posted by cortex at 1:20 PM on July 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


When my grandmother became a 100 she was asked by a local newspaper reporter what about her life she believed attributed to her longevity. "None of your damn business!" was her reply. Then she laughed. So did everybody else. Except the reporter.
posted by njohnson23 at 1:35 PM on July 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


Reading this as "Making fun" of the old woman is an oversensitive and incorrect reading. She's making jokes, and killing, and does not give a crap. Dementia runs in my family. God please make me as funny as this old woman if I'm lucky enough to get old.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 1:59 PM on July 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Is there an actual doctor in the blue who has an opinion on the Alzheimer's question?
posted by LarryC at 2:00 PM on July 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Yeah, this is not actually so funny if you know a very old person who has lost all sense of what social behavior means. And no, that does not equate to "jolly messin'-with-the-young-folks fun!" But by all means enjoy your fantasies of how great it's going to be throwing off all restraint when you reach that age.
posted by languagehat at 2:16 PM on July 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


But by all means enjoy your fantasies of how great it's going to be throwing off all restraint when you reach that age.

Oh, hey, thanks for the permission.
posted by Halloween Jack at 2:21 PM on July 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


cribcage wrote: "Hey Grandma, quit telling the newsman that you want dick" doesn't strike me as being oppressively conformist.

My take, especially given all of the prompting and over-talking that seemed to be horrendously controlling, was that Grandma saying "hey kids, stop parading me in front of the media like a trained monkey" didn't work, so Grandma escalated, with humor and honesty.

I kind of drifted away from most of my grandparents in the period when they were dying off, but a few months before his death I ended up hanging out for an evening with my maternal grandfather for several hours in his living room. He was in his early '80s, still pretty hale, taking care of the household and his adult developmentally disabled son, involved in local politics, disaster prepararations (he laid out the Hurricane Sandy scenario in that conversation back in 2003).

Among the things we talked about were some of his regrets in not exploring some sexual opportunities when he was younger (he kept a collection of Penthouse and Playboy that we'd offer to clean the house for my grandmother so we could sneak off and peruse them, and said collection was a sore point with my grandmother though they'd slept in separate rooms for decades), and how younger people's expectations of aging tried to force him into molds that didn't work. He said, a couple of times, something to the order of "I've still got work to do, but I'm tired, and when it's my time I'm ready to go", and it bugged him that many of the generation between us were of the "Live longer! Keep exercising! Take your pills!" cheerleading bent.

Seems like this woman managed to combine both of those complaints in a way deliberately calculated to piss off her over-controlling children (and, probably, grandchildren), and calling that dementia is condescending as hell.
posted by straw at 2:22 PM on July 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


That's quite a tale, and it's possible but it certainly isn't the simplest explanation. It's funny how often FPPs function as Rorschach tests. For the record, though, I agree with you that throwaway Internet diagnoses of dementia aren't especially useful.
posted by cribcage at 2:27 PM on July 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


But by all means enjoy your fantasies of how great it's going to be throwing off all restraint when you reach that age.

If I ever survive to be 100 years old, I think I'd have earned 100 dicks. Sounds good to me, to be honest.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 2:56 PM on July 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Can't help wondering how this thread would be looking if this was a video of some old man going on about how he wants pussy and asking a young female reporter how her pussy is.

I'd like to think it would be going more or less the same, but I sure wouldn't bet that way.
posted by Decani at 3:00 PM on July 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Decani's got a point--dirty ol' grannies are funny, but dirty ol' grandpa's are just nasty.
posted by BlueHorse at 3:02 PM on July 8, 2013


What if she's not senile or trying to deconstruct our socially conditioned expectations of the elderly? Maybe she just wants some dicks.
posted by deathpanels at 3:03 PM on July 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Maybe she just wants some dicks.

"I'm old, not dead!"
posted by grubi at 3:04 PM on July 8, 2013


What if the reporter had said "OK, granny. Let's do it." and asked everyone else to give them a little privacy so he could give her what she was asking for? Clear the room and let them go at it? Or is she allowed to ask for it strictly for the YouTube hits but not allowed to actually get it?
posted by pracowity at 3:15 PM on July 8, 2013


To me it mostly seemed like the lady was irritated that the reporter and camera were there, and decided to do the only thing in her power, and she had nothing to lose here.

When my very old grandma felt angry and helpless, she'd come up with her own set of obscenities. Also, she missed sex and talked a lot about it when she felt she could. She was also (happily) certain she still had the immense seductive powers of her youth. This old gran had an other way of expressing herself than my gran, but I felt I could recognize the set of emotions.
I am not a doctor, but a number of doctors told family and lawyers that my grandma had no form of dementia at all. What she did have was a very large family, with some members who knew her well, some who didn't know her at all, but still wanted to be part of the action when Special Things Happened. And were shocked when she called them sinister cunts or dickheads, as she did repeatedly and in public....
posted by mumimor at 3:18 PM on July 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Can't help wondering how this thread would be looking if this was a video of some old man

Male privilege doesn't suddenly stop once you reach a certain age.

Clear the room and let them go at it?

If they both consented? Sure, why not. What's the actual harm if they're both willing? I'm not sure I'm following you here...
posted by Doleful Creature at 3:19 PM on July 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Quite an echo chamber in here.

20 years ago I was a young nurse, doing opportunistic labour in the geriatric section of a local psychiatric hospital. One day I was taking care of an old priest. The gentleman in question had Alzheimer's. I think it is fair to say, and he was in a state where he cursed a lot. The day I was there, the archbishop came to call. I was tasked with presenting the priest, from whom a torrent of obscenities fell, as the archbishop extended his ring to be kissed. Like the video, it was somewhere between sad and funny, and it stuck with me.

I expect to look similarly. I find myself in situations that one does not talk about in polite society, and I suspect I will holler them from the rafters when I am wheelbound and blanketed.
posted by stonepharisee at 3:23 PM on July 8, 2013


What if the reporter had said "OK, granny. Let's do it." and asked everyone else to give them a little privacy so he could give her what she was asking for?

Maybe he has Alzheimer's.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 4:06 PM on July 8, 2013


> Oh, hey, thanks for the permission.

Sorry if I harshed your mellow. I repeat, if you've actually been around this, it's not so funny.
posted by languagehat at 4:12 PM on July 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Well I am around it, and I give everyone permission to laugh with the dirty grandma. So there.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 7:29 PM on July 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


I think it is fair to say, and he was in a state where he cursed a lot.

I've been around a lot of priests behind the scenes so to speak (not THAT far behind, thanks!) and the stream of obscenities is pretty normal.
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 7:59 PM on July 8, 2013


How big is yours?!

Absolutely riotous.
posted by mistersquid at 8:26 PM on July 8, 2013


This is my grandmother's 100th birthday party.

She is 101 now, and still chugging along. She has a great spirit and way about her. She's the wisest person in the room with the wittiest jokes, but also the most humble and gentle. I adore her.

She said she never planned to live this long; she has outlived her husband by nearly 40 years and all her friends she met earlier in life, plus her son, my uncle, who died a few years back in his 60s. But her health is very good for her age, and her family loves her, is good about visiting and helping her when needed, so not neglected in any way. Her life is not bad at all, except her eyesight and hearing are going; she can still hear books on tape and CD, and the television. She's not unhappy, but sometimes you can get to a place where, although you're not suffering and don't require assisted living, you can't plan long term but you keep going year after year. After year after year ...

I mean, she was in the hospital around the beginning of this year for pneumonia, and was discharged two days later looking a bit tired, but otherwise in good enough health to go back to her own apartment. She looked better than I do when I recover from a seasonal cold! She's in a "rest home" apartment building, but not assisted living, and she's pretty independent in mind and body. We've had a few scares like this in the last several years where she might end up in the hospital for a day or two, but she's always better within record time. It used to feel like, OK, this is it, because how many people survive pneumonia at 101? But her health is amazingly resilient. She has all her teeth - OK, a few crowns but no dentures. She never dyed her hair although she was accused of it on a regular basis, which only started to turn grey in her late 80s. She uses a walker for safety when going to eat at her facility, but she doesn't totally need it and walks without it within her own apartment. She needs some help with it, mostly the visual part, but she still writes checks herself to pay her bills and does her own taxes (she ran a business when she was younger). Her body is almost defiantly healthy, and she has a good life, but she's been ready to go for at least a decade now, and has sort of been resigned to the fact that she's still around. Not unhappy, just quietly living a life she never imagined would go on for so long.
posted by krinklyfig at 9:56 PM on July 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


How do you think she got to live so long? Some call it life force....
some call it...horniness.
posted by eggtooth at 10:51 PM on July 8, 2013


Can't help wondering how this thread would be looking if this was a video of some old man going on about how he wants pussy and asking a young female reporter how her pussy is.

Honestly, I would probably feel the same way. But you're right. It wouldn't get posted.

I think what's going on here is that this woman does not want to be interviewed, and/or she just thinks the reporter is really cute. Which he is.
posted by mrgrimm at 10:19 AM on July 9, 2013


this woman does not want to be interviewed

She shows shockingly litle understanding of how the modern viral media system works!
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 10:26 AM on July 9, 2013


Doleful Creature: Can't help wondering how this thread would be looking if this was a video of some old man

Male privilege doesn't suddenly stop once you reach a certain age.
Nor does misandry.
posted by IAmBroom at 11:18 AM on July 9, 2013


All this comes much more easily with the collaboration of friends. When we are children, our other selves, our families, friends, and teachers, do everything possible to confirm us in the illusion of separateness–to help us to be genuine fakes, which is precisely what is meant by “being a real person.” For the person, from the Latin persona, was originally the megaphone-mouthed mask used by actors in the open-air theaters of ancient Greece and Rome, the mask through (per) which the sound (sonus) came. In death we doff the persona, as actors lake off their masks and costumes in the green room behind the scenes. And just as their friends come behind the stage to congratulate them on the performance, so one’s own friends should gather at the deathbed to help one out of one’s mortal role, to applaud the show, and, even more, to celebrate with champagne or sacraments (according to taste) the great awakening of death.

Alan Watts: The Game of Black-And-White

posted by telstar at 11:59 PM on July 14, 2013


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