I’ll be turning 65 next April, and the thought of it made me sit back a little recently and reflect on my life. Like most people, I’ve experienced plenty of ups and downs. A couple of months ago someone asked me what advice I would give, if I could go back in time and speak to my five year old self.
That was a very tough question to answer easily – but here’s how I think at least one conversation might have gone.
Me: Hi Jimmy, how are you?
5 Year old me: I’m good mister, who are you?
Me: Believe it or not mate I’m you, but about 60 years older. I’ve come back from the future to talk to you.
5 Year old me: Gee, what happened to me? Did I get hit by a bus or something?
Me: No mate, that’s what age is going to do to you – and too many custard tarts.
5 Year old me: Whoa, I’ll never eat a custard tart again. Tell me mister, was I successful and happy in my life?
Me: As far as success is concerned you’re going to have highs and lows, but you’ll be strong enough to roll with the punches. As for happiness, you’ll be blessed with two very beautiful daughters. Once that happens, nothing will ever really get you down in the same way again.
5 Year old me: Roll with the punches? Sounds like I’m going to be a boxer?
Me: No mate, a German Shepherd
5 Year old me: What?
Me: I’m kidding. You like to sing, don’t you Jimmy?
5 Year old me: Yep, I love doing that, and I get ice cream for singing to our neighbours here in Liverpool. Sometimes I get enough ice creams for my brothers and sisters too, by singing Beatles songs.
Me: soon you’re going to live in a beautiful country called Australia – and you’ll become one of their Kings of Pop.
5 Year old me: Don’t think that will happen mister, cos mummy tells me off when I fart.
Me: no mate, the king of pop is what they call their king of popular music.
5 Year old me: Do I get that award because I do my Elvis moves when I sing?
Me: No mate, they stop you doing that – because they think it’s too naughty.
5 Year old me: is Elvis being naughty when he does it?
Me: No mate, not at all.
5 Year old me: I don’t understand?
Me: No mate, and you never really will.
5 Year old me: That’s silly
Me: Yes mate very, but Elvis does become one of your friends
5 Year old me: now I think you’re telling me fibs
Me: No Jimmy, he watches you sing on American television and asks you to jam with him at Graceland.
5 Year old me: why would the king wanna jam with a little kid like me? That’s crazy.
Me: I know mate, but it will happen. You’ll be made to wear outfits like the ones Elvis wore too – but a few of them you won’t like wearing very much.
5 Year old me: ok, I’ll remember to be strong and say no when that happens
Me: now you’re catching on
5 Year old me: is there anything else important I should remember mister?
Me: Yes mate, there is. Promise me one thing
5 Year old me: ok
Me: when they order you to stop singing rock n roll, say no. Tell them you will be happy to sing the style of music they want you to do, but refuse to give up rock n roll to do it, ok?
5 Year old me: I promise mister. Do my daughters end up having good voices?
Me: Yes mate they do – it’s in the genes.
5 Year old me: that’s good because I love wearing jeans.
Me: yes mate lol.
5 Year old me: Do I end up making lots of money?
Me: yes mate, but mainly for other people.
5 Year old me: But that’s not fair, how does that happen?
Me: that’s a long story mate, but we can make sure it doesn’t happen.
5 Year old me: How?
Me: here’s a list of people you should listen to and have faith in, and here’s another list of people to avoid.
5 Year old me: I’m sorry mister, but I don’t understand again.
Me: if you don’t listen to me and put your trust in the wrong people again, you will.