Catch 22

By Carl and Jo Ann Hauser
It’s that time of year again. Jo Ann and I were walking out of Wal-Mart, when we were ambushed by two cute little girls wearing green. That’s right ~ it’s Girl Scout Cookie time! We couldn’t resist their cute little faces, or the Thin Mints displayed on the table, so we bought a box. We got home and immediately opened the box. Jo Ann took one sleeve of cookies; I took the other. Two hours later there wasn’t a cookie to be found! This was not a Catch 22, simply cause and effect. No one can resist little girls and cookies!

Jo Ann’s birthday was in February. She told me she didn’t want anything. I got her a card that had a button attached to it that said, “It’s my Birthday Today.” Apparently because she didn’t get anything, I wasn’t getting any either! Again, not a Catch 22, simply cause and effect.

The origin of Catch 22 comes from the Joseph Heller novel about a World War II bomber pilot. A Catch 22 is an Army regulation that says, “A bomber pilot is insane, if he flies combat missions without asking to be relieved from duty, and is thus eligible to be relieved from duty. But if he asks to be relieved from duty, that means he’s sane, and has to keep flying.” (Googled the definition) Catch 22 has become the phrase to refer to any no-win-scenario. For example, when Bill O’Rielly says . . . you can have the last word.

Seniors have more Catch 22s than any other age group. For a young adult, life can be trying. You can’t get a job because you have no experience; you can’t get experience because you have no job. When you get a little older, you’ve gotten the wife and children you’ve always wanted, then you realize you have a wife and children! By the time you reach your sixties, you think the kids are grown; you have a little money; you can do anything you want. Right?

You thought traveling would be taking a cruise; it really means moving from the couch to your easy chair. You thought when you retired, you could finally sleep in. True, except for the three times you get up to pee in the night! Forty years have gone by, and your favorite football team still hasn’t won a Super Bowl. Apparently they believe in no-win-scenarios. Your doctor says no more drinking, except for one glass of wine purely for medicinal purposes. In fact, if you are still smoking, drinking, and over-eating, this article doesn’t apply to you, because you didn’t make it to sixty anyway! The no-win-scenario has Senior written all over it. So, what’s a Senior supposed to do for fun? You guessed it; come to the Senior Center!

We have win-win-scenarios. You may come and eat with or without your teeth in. You may use the rest rooms as often as you want. You can talk politics all you want; the other Seniors can’t hear you! We have a cute staff of girls; men, you can flirt all you want (no touching!). We play bridge twice a week; somebody always wins! The food we serve is for winners, too! Plus, we have a great salad bar!

So, let’s review what we’ve learned. 1) Jo Ann needs more than a button for her birthday. 2) Cause and effect is like . . . if you eat beans, you’ll have gas. 3) Catch 22 for Seniors: it doesn’t matter if you go the bathroom before going to bed, you’ll still be up in a few hours! 4) Catch 22 for everybody else: you can’t wait ‘til you retire ~ right? 5) God has no Catch 22: we are all covered by Grace!