I write this at the risk of upsetting my bride of 30 years. I turn 65 this week.

She doesn’t want anyone I know to know how old I am, and I can understand that. What bothers me is that people I don’t know, know. You know what I mean?

I’ve been on the AARP mailing list for about 15 years. They know. The trouble with the American Association of Retired People is that you get its mail whether you’re a member or not. However, as a member, you get more mail. Also, I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to join the ranks of retired people. And, the thought of being the part of a special interest group that lobbies Congress with my money irks me.

In the last three months, I’ve been inundated with junk mail from insurance companies that know the day and hour I was born.

If the actuaries know my age, I’m guessing the company bean counters know how old I am, too. I’m just hoping it doesn’t matter.

The sad news is, I can’t afford to quit and being a sexagenarian is not at all like it sounds. The glad news is, I don’t want to quit. Moreover, according to Social Security, I can make as much money as I want when I’m 65.

What! That’s not the way Social Security means it? I can’t make as much as I want?

While thinking about what I want to do when I grow up, I’ll stick with this job until I get a position as a consultant.

For nearly 40 years, this ordinary guy has had opportunities to introduce himself to thousands people, ordinary and extraordinary. Before that, I hid in the background, while seizing opportunities to do stupid things.

I thumbed my way from McGuire AFB, N.J. to Buffalo just because. My pal and I were stuck at the Thruway entrance in Rochester from 2 to 6 a.m. At dawn, it dawned on us that were standing under a “Don’t pick up hitchhikers” sign.

I’m proud of the fact that I saw three-quarters of the “Million Dollar Quartet” (Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis Presley and Johnny Cash, but not Carl Perkins) and John F. Kennedy. After the prom, we saw Connie Francis at the Town Casino. Tony Bennett shook my hand at Melody Faire.

I’m not so proud that I’ve attended New Year’s Eve ceremonies at Times Square twice. Once was a big enough waste of time, but my Air Force buddies talked me into doing it again.

It’s fun to bore people with personal encounters stories of some of sports outstanding personalities. I chased wild geese at the Alabama Swamps and was taken for a ride by Russian black marketers on the back streets of Moscow?

“Take me back to my hotel,” I said with authority. They did and here I am.

My favorite personality remains Morganna the Kissing Bandit. My local hero is Walter Allen of Locust Street. He cared for two wives who had Alzheimer’s disease, eight years each (1972-1980 and 1996-2004).

Allen, who lived in Niagara Falls and Lewiston before settling in Lockport, was active in baseball, softball, golf and basketball leagues. He was an aquatic director and taught swimming and life saving for 25 years.

After I did a story about him, I learned that he had been a state handball champion. Allen, who is approaching 90, lost his left arm 70 years ago.

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