Duffer?

Ye auld duffer – an explanation

We have long since left the Sturm-und-Drang of youth and have reach an amount of years which gives us the right to be right about everything. Here follows a non-exhaustive collection of signs of an auld duffer, in case you would find yourself searching for one for the purpose of requesting his wisdom. Or, even better, arrive at the insight that you yourself have reached such an exalted state. The list below does not constitute a complete compilation of signs of dufferness. It should rather be seen as a useful heuristic to identify said duffers.

You might very well be an auld duffer, if you:

1. … and your friends use terms such as “old chap” and “bean” in adressing each other.

2. … you are a man. This is a necessary condition, since a decent old duffer would not dream of calling a lady a “duffer”, “bean” or “chap”. That would be most improper. We must point out that “being a man” has nothing to with having a large beard or a big motor vehicle or some other superficiality. And it has nothing to do with your intimate preferences either. Blasted! That subject should not be put into print. Just keep an upper stiff lip and do not meddle in other people’s private life!

3. .. have seen a lot of life, and therefore, regardless of your superiority, is quite humble in both your intellectual and moral ponderings, and in your social interactions with your fellow men.

4. … remember things from the 1960s. If you remember things from times before that, even better. However, if you remember things from previous lives, that does not count. Furthermore, if you are truly auld but do not remember that much, do not worry.

5. … know proper behaviour and are polite and kind. But you do not overly care what others think of you, such as wearing the same old tweed jacket, or enjoying a glass of single malt on a Tuesday afternoon. However, nosepicking and other behaviour might have it charms, but should be left out of public places (watch out for camera drones).

6. … enjoy cakes and ale.

7. Having children is not at all a necessary condition (!), but if you are so blessed (?), here are some signs of your auldness:
a) You repeatedely say to them: “When I was at your age…”
b) Your children tells you: “Dad, you already told that story a hundred times…”. And you know that is the truth.
c) You have grandchildren.
If your same-age kith and kin show some of these signs, you are probably auld, too.

8. While your long life has sharpened your wits, you have the ability to apply ruthless logic to any problem, and your vast life experience gives you an upper hand in any argument, you also have started to be as easily distracted as when you were a child.

9. In addition to the above qualitative criteria, we have added a quantative one for the sake of this audiocast. A duffer is at least forty (40) years of age. However, you are allowed to listen to us if you are younger.

10. Many duffers are known to have used traveller’s cheques.

11. Postcards.