Reproduction 3 How to guess your age

It seems to me that they are building staircases steeper than they used to. The rises are higher, or there are more of them, or something. May be this is because it is to much farther today from the first to the second floor, but I've noticed it is Reproduction 3 How to guess your age getting harder to make two steps at a time any more. Nowadays it is all I can do to make one step at a time.

Another thing I've noticed is the small print they're using lately. Newspapers are getting farther and farther away when I hold them Reproduction 3 How to guess your age, and I have to squint to make them out. The other day I had to back halfway out of a telephone booth in order to read the number on the coin box. It is obviously ridiculous to suggest that a person my age needs glasses, but the only Reproduction 3 How to guess your age other way I can find out what's going on is to have somebody read aloud to me, and that's not too satisfactory because people speak in such low voices these days that I can't hear them very well.

Everything is farther than it used to be. It's Reproduction 3 How to guess your age twice the distance from my house to the station now, and they've added a fair-sized hill that I never noticed before,. The trains leave sooner too. I've given up running for them, because they start faster these days when I try to catch them. You Reproduction 3 How to guess your age can’t depend on timetables any more, and it's no use asking the conductor. I ask him a dozen times a trip if the next station is where I get off, and he always says it isn't. How can you trust u conductor like that? Usually I gather up Reproduction 3 How to guess your age my bundles a and put on my hat and coat and stand in the aisle a couple of stops away, just; to make sure I don't go past my destination. Sometimes I make double sure by getting off at the station ahead.

A lot of other things Reproduction 3 How to guess your age are different lately. Barbers no longer hold up a mirror behind me when they've finished, so I can see the back of my head, and my wife has been taking care of' the tickets lately when we go to the theatre. They don't use the same Reproduction 3 How to guess your age material in clothes any more, either. I've noticed that all my suits have a tendency to shrink, especially in cortain places such as around the waist or in the seat of the pants and the laces they put in shoes nowadays are harder to reach.

Revolving doors revolve much Reproduction 3 How to guess your age faster than they used to. I have to let a couple of openings go past me before I jump out again I’m right back in the street where I started. It’s the same with golf, I’m giving it up because these modern golf balls they Reproduction 3 How to guess your age sail are so hard to pick up when I stoop over. I’ve had to quit driving too; the restrooms in filling stations are getting farther and farther apart. Usually I just stay home at night and read the papers, particularly the obituary columns. It’s funny how Reproduction 3 How to guess your age much more interesting the obituary columns have been getting lately.

Even the weather is changing. It’s colder in winter and the summers are hotter than they used to be. I’d go away, if it wasn’t so far. Snow is heavier when I try to shovel it Reproduction 3 How to guess your age, and I have to put on rubbers whenever I go out, because rain today is wetter than the rain we used to get. Draughts are more hovers too. It must be the way they build windows now.

People are changing too. For one thing they’re younger than they must to be Reproduction 3 How to guess your age when I was their age. I went back recently to an alumini reunion at the college I graduated from in 1923 - that is, in 1933 - I mean, 1923 - and I was shocked to see the more tots they’re admitting as students these days. The average age of the Reproduction 3 How to guess your age freshman class couldn’t have been more than seven. They seem to be more polite than in my time, though; several undergraduates called me “Sir”, and one of them asked me if he could help me across the street.

On the other хэнд, people my own age are so much older Reproduction 3 How to guess your age than I am. I realise that my generation is approaching middle age (I define middle age roughly as the period between 21 and 110) but there is no excuse for my classmates tottering a state of advanced senility. I ran into my old roommate at the bar, and he’d changed Reproduction 3 How to guess your age so much that he didn’t recognize me.

''You've put on a little weight George", I said.

"It’s this modern food", George said. “It seem to be more fattening”.

“How about the martini?” I said. "Have you noticed how much weaker the martinis are these days?”

Everything Reproduction 3 How to guess your age is different, said George. “Even the food you get. It’s more fattening”.

“How long since I’ve seen you, George?” I said. “It must be several years”.

“I think the last time was right after the election”, said George.

“What election was that?”

George thought for a moment. “Harding Reproduction 3 How to guess your age”

I ordered a couple more martinis. "Have you noticed that martinis are weaker that they used to be?” I said.

"It' isn't the good old days", George said. “Remember when we’d go down to the speak, and order some Grange Blossoms, and maybe pick up a Reproduction 3 How to guess your age couple of flappers?"

"You used to be quite a cake-eater, George", I said. "Do you still do the Black Bottom?"

"I put on too much weight" said George. "This food nowadays seems to be more fattening”.

"I know", I said, "you mentioned that just a minute Reproduction 3 How to guess your age ago”.

"Did I?" said George.

"How about another martini?" I said "Have you noticed the martins aren't as strong as they used to be?"

"Yes", said George. "You said that twice before".

"Oh", I said. I got to thinking about poor old George while I shaving this morning Reproduction 3 How to guess your age, and I stopped for a moment and looked at My own reflection in the mirror.

They don't seem to use the same kind of glass in mirrors.

Reproduction 4 The test

by Angela Gibbs


On the afternoon Marian took her second driver's test, Mrs. Ericson went with her. "It's probably better Reproduction 3 How to guess your age to have someone a little older with yon," Mrs. Ericson said as Marian slipped into the driver's seat beside her.

"Yes, Ma'am," Marian said in her soft unaccented voice. "They probably do like it better if a white person shows up with you."

"Oh, I don Reproduction 3 How to guess your age't think it's that," Mrs. Ericson began, and subsided after a glance at the girl's set profile. Marian drove the car slowly through the shady suburban streets. Mrs. Ericson watched her dark, competent hands and wondered for the thousandth time how the house had ever Reproduction 3 How to guess your age managed to get along without her or how she had lived through those earlier years when her household had been presided over by a series of slatternly white girls who had considered housework demeaning and the care of children an added insult.

"You drive beautifully, Marian," she said. "Now, don Reproduction 3 How to guess your age't think of the last time. People say that they only want you to slip them a little something," Mrs. Ericson said doubtfully.

"No," Marian said. "That would only make it worse, Mrs. Ericson, I know."

The car slid up to the curb at the rear of a short line of Reproduction 3 How to guess your age parked cars. The inspectors had not arrived yet. They settled down to the dreary business of waiting.

"It will be marvellous to have someone dependable to drive the children to school every day," Mrs. Ericson said.

Marian looked up from the list of driving, requirements she Reproduction 3 How to guess your age had been studying. They looked at each other and smiled with affection.

Two cars with official insignia on their doors stopped across the street. The inspectors leaped out. Marian's hands tightened on the wheel. "There's the one who flunked me last time," she whispered pointing to a stocky, self Reproduction 3 How to guess your age-important man, "Oh, Mrs. Ericson."

"Now, Marian," Mrs. Ericson said. They smiled at each other again, rather weakly.

The inspector who finally readied their car was not the stocky one hut a genial, middle-aged man who grinned broadly as he thumbed over their papers. He slid into Reproduction 3 How to guess your age the seat beside Marian. "Turn right at the corner, Mandy-Lou."

From the curb, Mrs. Ericson watched the car move smoothly up the street.

The inspector мейд notations in a small black book. "Age?" he inquired presently, as they drove along.


He looked at Marian out Reproduction 3 How to guess your age of the corner of his eye. "Old enough to have quite a flock of pickaninnies, eh?"

Marian did not answer.

"Left at this corner," the inspector said, "and park between that truck and the green Buick."

The two cars were very close together, but Marian squeezed in between them Reproduction 3 How to guess your age without too much manoeuvreing. "Driven before, Mandy-Lou?" the inspector asked.

"Yes, sir. I had a license for three years in Pennsylvania." "Why do you want to drive a car?" "My employer needs me to take her children to and from school."

"Sure you don't really want to Reproduction 3 How to guess your age sneak out nights and meet some young blood?" the inspector asked. He laughed as Marian shook her head.

"Let's see you take a left at the corner and then turn around in the middle of the next block," the inspector said. Marian put out her хэнд, swung around neatly in Reproduction 3 How to guess your age the street, and headed back in the direction from which they had come.

"Turn onto Main Street and let's see how you-all does in heavier traffic," the inspector said.

They followed a line of cars along Main Street for several blocks until they came in sight of Reproduction 3 How to guess your age a concrete bridge which arched high over the railroad tracks.

"Read that sign at the end of the bridge," the inspector said.

"Proceed with caution. Dangerous in slippery weather," Marian said.

"You-all she can read fine." the inspector exclaimed. "Where d'you learn to do that, Mandy Reproduction 3 How to guess your age?"

"I got my college degree last year," Marian said. Her voice was not quite steady.

As the car crept up the slope of the bridge the inspector burst out laughing. He laughed so hard he could scarcely give his next direction. "Stop here." he said, wiping his eyes, "then Reproduction 3 How to guess your age start 'er up again. Mandy got her degree, did she? Dog my cats!"

Marian pulled up beside the curb. "Damn you!" she cried and started the car with a jerk.

The inspector lost his joviality in an instant. "Return to the starting place, please," he said, and мейд four Reproduction 3 How to guess your age very black crosses at random in the squares on Marian's application blank.

As Marian stopped the car, the inspector jumped out and brushed past Mrs. Ericson, his face purple. "What happened?" Mrs. Ericson asked, looking after him with alarm.

Marian stared down at the wheel and her lip trembled.

"Oh Reproduction 3 How to guess your age, Marian, again?" Mrs. Ericson said.

Marian nodded. "In a sort of different way," she said, and slid over to the right-hand side of the car.

{The World's Best Short Stories. Edited by Roger B, Goodman. Bantam Books. Toronto, 1967)