One of the beauties of growing older, for me at least, has been to stop minding what the chattering classes might say about, well, anything.
I would describe my normal dress code as conservative with a dash of personality. I suppose the conservative part was cultivated to please the snob and WASP police and the dash a rebellion against same. Now I don’t care. Although I like to think I still class the thing up, my overriding thought when spying these silver sneakers was ‘Oh, what fun.’
I wish I could go back and tell my younger self to ditch the conservative dress code and just bring on the fun. Since I can’t do that, I can at least raise my children to embrace their true personalities; to embrace the fun. Oh, and to indulge their mother in that same pursuit if they see her stepping and styling down the street in a pair of silver sneakers – although probably not spitting in the street!
When I Am An Old Woman I Shall Wear Purple
by Jenny Joseph
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.
You can wear terrible shirts and grow more fat
And eat three pounds of sausages at a go
Or only bread and pickle for a week
And hoard pens and pencils and beermats and things in boxes.
But now we must have clothes that keep us dry
And pay our rent and not swear in the street
And set a good example for the children.
We must have friends to dinner and read the papers.
But maybe I ought to practice a little now?
So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised
When suddenly I am old, and start to wear purple.