Y is for Yesterday


Yesterday, all my troubles seemed so far away
Now it looks as though they’re here to stay
Oh, I believe in yesterday

Suddenly I’m not half the man I used to be
There’s a shadow hanging over me
Oh, yesterday came suddenly

Yesterday – Beatles

When I was a kid, our grade 8 class choose Yesterday for our graduation theme complete with the Beatles song “Yesterday” as our song. It was an odd choice considering the song wasn’t even ‘current’ – this would have been 1982, long past the prime for that classic to be in the consciousness of a bunch of 13 and 14 year old kids. Yes we were passing into another stage in our life and growing up, but why were we so nostalgic for ‘yesterday’ is beyond me.

They say that youth is wasted on the young, and the older I get the more I have to agree with that sentiment. I think one of the reasons that statement rings true is because ‘the young’ act like they have all the time in the world, and older people shake their heads wishing they still were ‘younger’ with more time on the clock. The reason I put ‘young’ in quotes is because its all relative. A 30-something might feel like youth is wasted on the ‘young’ 20 year old, the same way a senior might look at at 30 year old and think the same thing.

It’s one thing to be nostalgic about ‘yesterday’, but there’s nothing to be gained by having regrets about what might have been. Yesterday is in the past and time machines notwithstanding, nothing is going to change what happened. The best anyone can do is move forward and make the best of the time they have left in this life.

It’s never to late to start on a new adventure, try a project you always wanted to start, or try learning a new skill. David Seidler’s Oscar win for his screenplay for The King’s Speech in 2011 was not only notable for the fact that he was the oldest to win that particular aware at 70, he was also developing the story for more than 30 years. A stutter himself, Seidler had always been interested in writing about King George VI’s struggle, but had difficulty finding enough information on Dr. Lionel Logue, the Australian who successful treated the King. He contacted one of Dr. Logue’s descendants and was given access to Logue’s journals under the condition that the Queen Mother gave her approval. After writing to her personal secretary in the early 1980s and receiving the reply that she agreed but not during her lifetime, Seidler abandoned the project for more than 25 years. Only well after the Queen Mother died in 2002 did he look to revive the project.

Seidler said during his acceptance speech “My father always said to me I would be a late bloomer”. Better a late bloomer than regretting what might have been.