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How Terribly Strange Indeed: Seventy Is More Than Just a Number by Roy Wepner L’74

November 09, 2022

Wepner takes a deep dive into a single line in a 1968 song by Simon & Garfunkel.

A deep dive into a single line in a 1968 song by Simon & Garfunkel.

In “Old Friends” they described two old men sitting on a park bench, and sang sympathetically, “How terribly strange to be 70.” How exactly could two guys who were not yet 30 know this? And, more importantly, were they right?

Roy Wepner L’74, a baby boomer now in his mid-70s, tries to answer these questions. Wepner delves into various aspects of one’s eighth decade to seek out some answers. Among the strange phenomena he explores are having middle-aged children; senior moments that last for hours; pants that are suddenly too long; the loss of a single step — or more; and being a “high risk” senior during a pandemic.

Wepner also examines some of the strangely wonderful things about being in one’s 70s, such as the realization that nostalgia is even better than it used to be; the epiphany that boredom is preventable and curable; the growth in perspective that compensates for some loss of memory; the confirmation that old dogs really can learn new tricks; and — of course — grandchildren.

This first-person narrative of life in one’s 70s will provide insight to not only those who have crossed the 70-year threshold, but also those who plan to do so, as well as millennials and members of Generation X who have not yet given up on figuring out their parents.

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