Smart Stupid and Sixty

Nigel celebrates his third trimester of life.

It’s 2022 and Nigel Marsh, bestselling author of 2005’s Fat, Forty and Fired, is staring down the barrel of turning sixty.

So, what does he do about it? Well this is Nigel Marsh, and you guessed it, he wrote a book, This time he is Smart, Stupid and Sixty.

Every week he finds himself bumping awkwardly into evidence of his growing older.

His parents have both passed away, he’s losing his hearing and he and his wife Kate are now empty nesters – within two months their house has emptied of all four children as well as the pet dog.

Now he finds himself wearing a dressing-gown at his writing desk in a storage room under his garage wondering whether his happiest days are behind him.

But just because the first half of life is full of exciting, lifechanging events like becoming educated, building a career, forming partnerships and raising children – why can’t getting older be a good thing too?

The term ‘old age’ has become irretrievably negative when applied to people, so Nigel decides to rebrand it into ‘the third trimester’ of life.

Youth has its unique upsides, but so does old age. You care less what other people think of you; you’ve worked out who your real friends are; you haven’t got to spend your life commuting to a crushingly pointless job, or working for an arsehat; you’ve nothing to prove to anyone; you have the freedom to devote proper time to getting really good at a hobby…the list goes on.

In Smart, Stupid and Sixty, Nigel ponders his entry into the third trimester – ageing well, staying healthy, sex, decreasing work, parenting adult children, maintaining friendships, his parents’ passing, learning new skills and the secret to living a happy life and making the most of getting older.

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