In this madcap romp through the life of a typical senior citizen, author S. L. Varnado discusses his problems with telephone menus that fail to connect him with a living person, computers that refuse to compute, and HMOs that motivate him to seek assisted suicide.
As Varnado shares his difficulties with a "satanic" television set that brings in the Beverly Hillbillies speaking French, diets that lead to slow death by starvation, "aerobic exercises" that take the wind out of you, and "ghetto blasters" that wake the neighborhood at midnight, it becomes apparent that an elderly person's life is beset with danger in this brave new world of the twenty-first century. Varnado winces at the grim difficulties of a wife who keeps him on a rigorous diet and doctors who leave him alone for hours in tiny cubicles. There are, however, rare moments of triumph, such as when he convinces his wife that he is not really the "klutz" she thinks he is and when he makes a delightful pilgrimage to the local shopping mall. Although never one to take things lightly, Varnado leaves you with the feeling that even though "life can't be beautiful," a little cleverness can make it "tolerable."