Interview of an Older Man

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Toby
As I age, I hope to only be half of the person Toby is. At age seventy six, Toby has lived his life to where he has taught himself not to regret, get angry, or judge any other person. He has seen three different countries, several different states, and hundreds of different people. For a man who has not taken the best care of himself health wise, was drafted into the Vietnam War, and lost his wife, Toby amazes me with how well he still functions in everyday life.

According to the textbook in chapter three, older people tend to show signs of decreasing physical attributes, such as skin, hair, weight, and mobility. As I listened to Toby talk, I studied his outward appearance. His skin was flawless; his face was acne free and wrinkle free. Yes, he did have a few small crinkles around the corners of his eyes from smiling all of his life, but other than that, there was hardly anything. When I asked him about his daily life, Toby told me that he enjoys being outside. He loves the warm sun shining on him during the summer season. He joked about how he wished the tanning beds had been invented sooner so he could have been tan all year long while he was in his twenties. Toby also told me that he picked up the habit of smoking at a really young age. “The only thing I will ever regret is picking up that first cigarette because it landed me here [on hospice care].” The fact that Toby was always outside and smoking but still has zero wrinkles contradicts what the textbook has to say (page 71). Showing signs of an aging face is largely under a person’s own control. Avoiding ultraviolet rays and smoking are two key ideas in maintaining a healthier face, although, Toby is an exception to these two factors.

Even though Toby contradicts what the textbook has to say about an aging person’s skin, he is right on cue with what the book has to say about hair. Page 71 also talks about the thinning and greying of hair. As a man ages, he usually loses his hair on top of his...
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