1967 to 2014: Will you still need me?

Chuck Kurtz

Chuck Kurtz

Barring any unforeseen incidents, turning 64 is inevitable for everyone and although countless thousands of people have reached that milestone and countless more are destined to follow, somehow I never thought it would happen to me.

When The Beatles came out with the song of the same name in June of 1967 I was 17 at the time and looking forward to enjoying the summer prior to the start of my senior year at Olathe High School. Listening to that song and the mere thought of turning 64 years old, well, was nothing more than a nano-second flash through my brain and an assumption it would take a lifetime to reach.

When I get older, losing my hair, many years from now
Will you still be sending me a valentine, birthday greetings, bottle of wine?
If I’d been out ’til quarter to three, would you lock the door?
Will you still need me, will you still feed me when I’m sixty-four?

You’ll be older too
Ah, and if you say the word, I could stay with you

A youthful Chuck Kurtz

A youthful
Chuck Kurtz

It’s eerily shocking how quickly a lifetime can creep up on a person.

How is it that I can go from being 17, playing baseball, playing guitar for George and The Originals, to graduating from high school, partying in college, spending two years in the Army, getting married and having two kids, getting divorced, getting married and having two more kids, working 33 years at The Olathe Daily News, coaching the kids baseball and softball teams, going to all the school plays and teacher conferences, all the vacations, all the birthday parties, the Christmases to being semi-retired and babysitting grandchildren?

That lifetime-to-64 assumption now seems to have traveled at light speed. My head spins at how fast those years have gone by.

I could be handy, mending a fuse when your lights have gone
You can knit a sweater by the fireside, Sunday mornings, go for a ride
Doing the garden, digging the weeds, who could ask for more?
Will you still need me, will you still feed me when I’m sixty-four?

Beatle and now Sir Paul McCartney, who sang the song “64” back in 1967, will turn 72 in June. It was nearly eight years ago when I heard him do an interview about turning 64 and then singing the song. At the time I thought how awkward it must be for him to sing that song. He was 25 when he and the Beatles recorded it for the Sgt. Pepper’s album.

Talk about time slapping you in the face!

Every summer we can rent a cottage
In the Isle of Wight if it’s not to, dear
We shall scrimp and save
Ah, grandchildren on your knee, Vera, Chuck and Dave

Now it’s my turn to get slapped in the face.

My time to reflect on the past 47 years, which has evaporated so quickly, is tomorrow, Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014. Of all the things I’ve done in the past 64 years, and out of all the places I’ve been, the most cherished memories are those of doing things with my kids (Robbie, Sherri, Justin and Jessica), of making memories (and I am looking forward to making more memories) with my grandkids (Alexandra, Dylan, Carys, Rylin and Ashlyn), and spending the past 37 years with my wife Terri.

Send me a postcard, drop me a line stating point of view
Indicate precisely what you mean to say, yours sincerely wasting away
Give me your answer, fill in a form, mine forever more
Will you still need me, will you still feed me when I’m sixty-four?

One Response

  1. Nicely written Chuck. You put how many if us feel into words, beautifully.

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