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Challenges of Aging: Murphy, Leave Us Alone!

Updated on November 1, 2017
DzyMsLizzy profile image

An amateur comedienne, Liz loves humor and practical jokes, including funny songs. All hail April 1st & Oct. 31st! ;-)

What Is "Murphy's Law?"

I'm sure most of us have heard of Murphy's Law well before reaching adulthood. Who this original "Murphy" guy was, I have no idea. I do know this: there is a long line of people waiting to get their hands around his neck and give him a good shaking!

For those who may still be unaware of Murphy's Law, or in case it is a saying exclusive to the U.S.A., this is the full law, translated to text form, as the original is merely an oral tradition.

"Whatever can go wrong, will go wrong, and at the worst possible time."

That, my friends, is Murphy's Law. Short, sweet and to the point. (Whoops! I take it back about the 'sweet' part...) Some call it the pessimist's law; others call it reality. Whichever way you choose to think I assure you, it exists.

While the basic "law" itself is brief, it has innumerable sub-sets, each custom-designed for particular circumstances.

Murphy On Aging

That Murphy guy has a mean streak. He seems to delight in plaguing the elderly and infirm with his tricks. I've compiled a list of the top ten components of Murphy's Law as it affects senior citizens.

Not Your Ordinary Top Ten List

This is not a traditional "top ten" list; the situations are in random order, as I recalled them or had yet another experience involving one or another of them.

Number 1.

The more important the information, the smaller the print will be! Especially in legal documents!

Fine Print

Number 2.

The harder it is to bend over, the more often stuff falls on the floor or on the ground.

Oh, My Aching Back!

Number 3.

The more packages, bags, documents or what-have-you that you have to carry, while managing with your cane or walker, the narrower the doorway you need to enter will be.

Crunch Time

Number 4.

The drinking fountains that used to be scattered throughout malls will have disappeared when you need to take a midday dose of your medication.

(No illustration for this one: they're all gone, remember?) ;-)

Number 5.

The harder it is for you to bend and sit, the lower to the ground the seats in your friend's car will be when you need a ride.

How Low Can You Go?

Whatever can go wrong, will go wrong.

— Murphy

Number 6.

The price on the incontinent supplies won't scan, and the young buck at the checkout will holler over the intercom, "Price check on the old lady diapers!"

Price Check!

Number 7.

The more easily you bruise, the more likely you will get a newbie lab tech at the doctor's office who will stab your arm multiple times trying to find a vein.

Finish Learning, First!

Number 8.

If you don't wear glasses all the time, then the more often you need them, the more frequently they will be misplaced.

Now, Where Are My Glasses?

Number 9.

If you absolutely must remember something, that will be the first piece of information you will forget.

Arrggh! What Did Those Instructions Say?

Number 10.

If your hands are shaky, the only thing that you will spill while cooking is the item that was the very last you had on hand with barely enough for the recipe.

Rats! That Was The Last Of The Cinnamon!

What About You?

If you're laughing, good. I hope you're laughing with me, and not at me. For if you are young enough to laugh at me, be warned: your turn will come, and karma doesn't play nicely.

I invite my readers to share any other of their own experiences with ol' Murphy on the subject of aging. Simply leave your tale of woe in the comments section.

Have a wonderful day, and may Murphy keep his distance!

Illustration Credit

All illustrations are by the author. 
She can blame no one but herself 
for these scribblings.  ;-)

© 2012 Liz Elias


Submit a Comment
  • DzyMsLizzy profile imageAUTHOR

    Liz Elias 

    7 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, Glenn Stok,

    I'm most pleased that you got a kick out of this, and I sympathize with your joining the afflicted years. Thanks so very much for your kind words.

  • Glenn Stok profile image

    Glenn Stok 

    7 years ago from Long Island, NY

    It's nice to put some humor to all of this. You were very creative with how you made this list of Murphy's Laws on aging. I'm beginning to notice some of these things already in my life.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile imageAUTHOR

    Liz Elias 

    8 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hi, B.Leekley,

    Thanks so much for the votes! I'm pleased you enjoyed this bit of trivia. You're right, of course--it all gets worse until we are relieved of it all by entering our final sleep. ... ... and that's the real truth of life... ... you don't get out of it alive....

  • B. Leekley profile image

    Brian Leekley 

    8 years ago from Bainbridge Island, Washington, USA

    Up, Useful, Funny, and Interesting. The fundamental truth about aging is that it will get worse eventually.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile imageAUTHOR

    Liz Elias 

    8 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, Sharkeye11,

    I'm glad I was able to provide a chuckle. That doggoned Murphy is sure a nuisance, eh? You want to smack him one? Take a number and get in line! LOL

    You're right, that all of these all at once every day would be overwhelming...yet, we must laugh at it lest we cry.

    Thanks very much for your comment; I'm pleased you enjoyed the article.

  • Sharkye11 profile image

    Jayme Kinsey 

    8 years ago from Oklahoma

    This was cute and funny. I work with a lot of seniors, and yes, these facts are sadly true. Luckily, they don't happen all at once everyday! That would be just too overwhelming!

    I hate the small print! especially on prescription bottles! They are a pain for anyone of any age with limited eyesight!

    Great hub!

  • DzyMsLizzy profile imageAUTHOR

    Liz Elias 

    9 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hi, there Jeannieinabottle,

    Thanks so very much. I'm happy you enjoyed the article and my poor attempts at artwork. ;-) Thanks also for the vote--much appreciated.

  • Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie Marie 

    9 years ago from Baltimore, MD

    This is a great hub. I especially enjoyed the illustrations. :-) Voted up!

  • DzyMsLizzy profile imageAUTHOR

    Liz Elias 

    9 years ago from Oakley, CA

    @ starstream--Oh, my goodness--your comment must have slipped in between a reply to another, and I only just found it! I'm so sorry I missed you earlier. At any rate, I'm glad you liked the article, and you are so correct about sending out only positive energy. What we send out is like a boomerang!

    @ vocalcoach--Oh dear--do you need help getting up off the floor? I'm pleased to have hit your funnybone--and I don't mean that annoying spot on the elbow, surely invented by our 'friend' Murphy. ;-) Thanks much for the vote!

  • vocalcoach profile image

    Audrey Hunt 

    9 years ago from Pahrump NV

    Hahahaha!!!!! # 1, 2, 5, and 7 had me on the floor. Can't wait to share this with my friends.

    This is just priceless.Voted up!

  • DzyMsLizzy profile imageAUTHOR

    Liz Elias 

    9 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello again, triciajean...oh, yes, those ol' fumble-fingers--and I forgot about it getting harder to hang on to slippery stuff--like the soap in the shower! Cheers!

  • triciajean profile image

    Patricia Lapidus 

    9 years ago from Bantam, CT

    Audrey, today I was in line at the cashier in Stop and Shop. A nice looking man, slim with good posture, dropped a quarter. It was so hard for him to bend over and reach that coin I was about ready to help him. I was thinking 50ish but after that I decided he was over sixty. Darn those joints! And Murphy's law was in the no longer nimble fingers that dropped the quarter.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile imageAUTHOR

    Liz Elias 

    9 years ago from Oakley, CA

    @ PenHitsTheFan--I hear you on that one! There are numerous websites that seem to delight in fine print, and I have to re-size them. Thanks very much for adding your comment.

    @ AudreyHowitt--LOL--yes, that one is the worst--Oh my aching back! The floor does seem to keep getting further away, doesn't it! Thanks so much, and I'm pleased you got a chuckle out of this.

  • AudreyHowitt profile image

    Audrey Howitt 

    9 years ago from California

    Yes! I am laughing with you!! Already there in some respects---bending over trying to retrieve things!

  • PenHitsTheFan profile image

    Amy L. Tarr 

    9 years ago from Home

    I must be getting older because I can relate, especially on the vision issue. I had to reset the print size on my work computer just this week.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile imageAUTHOR

    Liz Elias 

    9 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hi, triciajean!

    Thanks so very much for the historical information and basis for this "law." You have today contributed to my education and fulfilled my motto of 'learn something new every day.'

    LOL Your grandson sounds like a real pistol. My husband's grandson was here recently with his parents, and in spite of his mother riding herd on him, WE both ended the day exhausted--and this kid is only a year and a half old (as of this writing, June '12).

    Thanks very much for your contribution to the article.

  • triciajean profile image

    Patricia Lapidus 

    9 years ago from Bantam, CT

    Thanks for the laughs, DzyMsLizzy. Thumbs up.

    Edward Murphy, an Air Force Captain, made this remark to remind his crew to take extra safety precautions: If anything can go wrong, it will.

    But I think there is a certain kind of truth to this pessimistic thinking, if you are looking only at the material world where entropy rules. It is only because we animate this world with life that anything ever goes uphill even part of the way!

    Well, there are some uses for aging. For example, my grandson sits quietly for a while because he can play with the spots on my hands. Otherwise, he's out there invoking Murphy's law ten times an hour!

  • DzyMsLizzy profile imageAUTHOR

    Liz Elias 

    9 years ago from Oakley, CA

    @ drbj--Hi there, and thanks very much for adding your comment. I agree about the phone books..a most annoying font size, indeed! So glad I was able to provide a chuckle or two.

    @ CR Rockwood--Laughing surely is better than crying in our beer--after all--who wants diluted, salty beer? I'm delighted that you so enjoyed the hub and got a good laugh!

    @ mjboomer--Oh, you are so right! I totally forgot about the missing toilets! But then, the list could have gone on and on to the top 20--or 50--or 100 ... and even then, I don't think Murphy would be done with us. I'll bet he was always in trouble in school, eh? Thanks so much for your comment!

  • mjboomer profile image

    Mike Elzner 

    9 years ago from Oregon

    HA! HA! HA!.........I laughed all the way through.....Murphy seems to stick his head up everywhere. And of course, When you really need to pee, there isn't a toilet in sight!

  • CR Rookwood profile image

    Pamela Hutson 

    9 years ago from Moonlight Maine

    This really had me laughing! As a person 'of a certain age', I totally relate. Thumbs up and thank you for your amazing sense of humor. We might as well laugh, huh? It isn't like we can change any of it!

  • drbj profile image

    drbj and sherry 

    9 years ago from south Florida

    I'm laughing through my tears, DML, because your Aging Laws are so funny ... and realistic. There's no question in my mind that phone directories have deliberately and sadistically utilized smaller font sizes when they printed information.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile imageAUTHOR

    Liz Elias 

    9 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hi there, Seeker7,

    Glad you enjoyed the trip down Murphy's Lane. Thanks for sharing the one about the electric scooter; I have no doubt at all that is exactly true.

    Yes, the young'uns' turn will come, and when it's their turn, they'll need to eat crow and say, "Oh...I see what you meant..."

    Thanks much for the great comment and the vote!

  • Seeker7 profile image

    Helen Murphy Howell 

    9 years ago from Fife, Scotland

    LOL!!! Lizzy this is - hilarious, awesome and very, very true to life! The only one I could add comes from an old neighbour of mine who has one of those electric mobility cars. As Davie, states -

    "you can bet your a----e that the battery on this b-----y thing will crash out before the b-----y hill and not after you've reached the top!!"

    I loved this brilliant hub, so true and yet so funny! I also agree - the young uns' that are laughing now, unfortunately they're turn will come and it happens so much quicker than we could ever believe.

    Great hub + voted up!

  • DzyMsLizzy profile imageAUTHOR

    Liz Elias 

    9 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, iantoPF, Thanks ever so much--I'm pleased you enjoyed the article so much. I do know what you mean about picking up speed--I'm right there with you on "almost" 65 revolutions, and I'm constantly asking, "Who spilled grease on the calendars?" (No one has owned up, yet.)

    I know what you mean about senior discounts...yet, being on a fixed income, they are a nice perk.

    Yeah--the old "for your age" jab in the ribs. Ouch! My eye doctor told me she can tell a person's age within a couple of years just by looking at their prescription, without seeing their chart! :-O

    Thanks very much for stopping by and adding these points to the topic., and thanks too, for the vote!

  • iantoPF profile image

    Peter Freeman 

    9 years ago from Pen-Bre, Cymru/Wales

    I really enjoyed this. I've circled the sun almost 65 times now and I seem to be picking up speed as time goes on.

    It still hurts my feelings when I ask for a cup of coffee and am given the senior discount without asking. I'm constantly solicited by the AARP and I can relate to everything you said.

    I recently had my eyes checked and got told that my eyesight is good "For your age" Why is it that every compliment these days is followed with that phrase?

    Voted up

  • DzyMsLizzy profile imageAUTHOR

    Liz Elias 

    9 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hi there, D.O.M. (as I saw someone else shorten you name... ;) ) ... I'm pleased I was able to tickle your funnybone. Thanks so much for the complimentary comment and the share.

  • Daughter Of Maat profile image

    Melissa Flagg COA OSC 

    9 years ago from Rural Central Florida

    OMG that was so funny!! lmao I'm still chuckling!! I had to share this, anyone in the medical field will find this absolutely hilarious!!! Great stuff Lizzy.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile imageAUTHOR

    Liz Elias 

    9 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hi, leahlefler,

    Thanks for the comment; I'm glad you enjoyed this bit of fluff. I'm sure your mom will relate..and I see you are beginning to as well... ;-) ... "...the floor is getting farther away???!!" Hey! That's MY line! LOL Been saying that for years, now.


  • leahlefler profile image

    Leah Lefler 

    9 years ago from Western New York

    This is fantastic - too funny! I'm still in my 30's, but I have to share this with my mom. She'll probably groan and then laugh - I do have to admit, the preschool teachers want us to sit on the floor with our kids and getting up is getting harder and harder. I think the floor is getting farther away!

  • DzyMsLizzy profile imageAUTHOR

    Liz Elias 

    9 years ago from Oakley, CA

    LOL, Feline Prophet--Maybe so--making him a vindictive so-and-so. ;-) Thanks for stopping by!

  • profile image

    Feline Prophet 

    9 years ago

    Remember...all this probably happened to Murphy as well! :D

  • starstream profile image

    Dreamer at heart 

    9 years ago from Northern California

    Your humor shines in this hub. It was enjoyable .. the Karma statement is so true. Remember send out positive energy everyone.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile imageAUTHOR

    Liz Elias 

    9 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hi, starstream,

    Wow--you're quick! ;-)

    Thanks much for your wise comment. It is true--youth is wasted on the young. By the time we figure it all out, and could go gangbusters, our body says, "You talkin' to ME?!"

    Indeed--be thankful for your agility before it gets up and goes.

  • starstream profile image

    Dreamer at heart 

    9 years ago from Northern California

    Yep, I work with seniors who live with their aged bodies daily. I suggest we really appreciate what we have before we lose it.


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