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Updated: May 18, 2018

Camry Owner Manuals Have More Pages than Gone with the Wind

The glove compartment in my brand new Toyota Camry is just big enough to hold all the instruction manuals. Coming in at just under 1000 pages, the 5-volume set of Owner Manuals is the automotive equivalent of Gone with the Wind (a mere 733 pages)

All those pages are necessary to explain mysterious dashboard abbreviations like BSM, RCTA, TRAC, PCS and EPS. I know about the Blind Spot Monitor and Rear Cross Traffic Alert (a fancy term for rearview camera) but have no idea what the other abbreviations mean.

The state-of-the-art multimedia system is truly beyond my comprehension. It took me a semester in high school to learn the intricacies of an electric typewriter. There is no way I can understand written directions that include terms like ID3Tag, WMA, MPC and ISO 9660 format.

Young people don’t need manuals. I asked my daughter to help explain the car’s technology. I reached for the 5 volume set of explanations. “We don’t need that, Mom” she explained. After a few punches of this button and that button, she had the system figured out. She explained how everything worked at a rapid fire pace. I am old. I no longer do anything at a rapid fire pace. I just smiled and pretended I understood.

The glove compartment in my old Camry held maps, pencils, pens, a Sudoku puzzle or two, insurance forms and a variety of lip balms. There is no room for such necessities in my new car since the 6 volume owner’s manual sucks up all the space. Now there is only enough extra room for proof of car insurance and


Confronted with hundreds and hundreds of pages of mind numbing automotive how-to’s, I am taking a page from Gone with the Wind. Just like Scarlett O’Hara, “I won’t think of it now….I’ll go crazy…I’ll think of it all tomorrow. After all, tomorrow is another day.”


Updated: May 18, 2018

Lyn's Feet out the Doggie Door

Growing old obviously poses risks.   We seniors learn about them every day. News stories, television specials, advertisements all remind us of the perils of old age. Health problems are a big topic.   After watching a television commercial about ocular myopathy, I went panic stricken to my eye doctor.  I was convinced m

y fuzzy eyesight was the harbinger of total blindness if not the first stages of a fatal brain tumor.

The good doctor examined my eyes.  “You can tell me the truth,” I bravely told him.  “How much longer before I lose my eyesight and/or die?”

He said my eyeglass prescription was out of date and I needed stronger magnification.

Television has truly become a health hazard.  An NCIS episode may be forgettable but commercial warnings about insomnia, incontinence, dry eye, dry mouth, dementia, COPD or diabetes are not.   The list is endless.  Even worse, the cure seems worse than the disease.  Television ads for “miracle drugs” feature older people laughing and cavorting with their grandchildren.  Obviously these clueless octogenarians cannot hear the disembodied voice over warning of side effects like bloody stools, suicidal thoughts, nausea and growing extra limbs.  I keep waiting for that giggling grandpa to start foaming at the mouth as he staggers crazily through the yard, babbling incoherently and spewing liquids from every orifice.

Worrying about the Awful Things That Are Sure to Happen Now That I am Old is definitely not healthy.  But even if health concerns can be corralled, other life happenings are apt to raise anxiety.  When is my adult child going to get a job?  How do I survive on a fixed income?  What is the Cloud anyway?

The only solution I can offer is humor.

Dylan Thomas wrote “Do not go gentle into that good night…rage, rage against the dying of the light.”   Good advice but I plan to laugh my way into eternity.

Excerpt from:  I Must Be Old, I Have a Pill Dispenser, all rights reserved.

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