Tag Archives: birthday

Older? Yes. Wiser? Meh.

 

Old-Lady-minI’m chalking another successful trip around the sun! By successful I mean that I haven’t been arrested (as far as anyone can find through the Freedom of Information Act); I’m not in rehab for any sort of physical, mental or addictive problems (that can be reported to any of my many insurance companies), and I’m still paying into the federal income tax system. So as far as I can tell, I’m still in that sweet spot of my life: old enough to know better but too old to care.

Of course, I’m still of an age where I lie about how old I am. Only now, I don’t shave years off. I add them on. Someone recently asked my age and I proudly said 57. I’m not 57 – still several years younger than that — but this person was stunned and amazed at how incredible I look to be that old. They now hold me up as a testament to how to really live life and left bragging to anyone who would listen about how terrific I look.

Whether or not I’m old is relative. I still sneeze with confidence. I drive at night. I can flip a queen-size mattress unaided. I’ve discovered that old is in the eye of the beholder and it’s gauged in Mother Years. If you’re old enough to be someone’s mother, then that someone thinks you’re old. You can be 28, but a 3-year old will think you’re ancient. I’m only old if I can be your mother. If I can be your grandmother, shut up. Go get your diaper changed and take a nap already.

At my age, I no longer have to explain myself. I can believe and say whatever crazy thing I want, and it gets written off as “She’s just set in her ways.” I can broadcast to a crowded party that gender fluidity is directly correlated to global warming which is completely controlled by the Illuminati. Then just sit back and watch the fireworks. This takes much less effort and interest than actually trying to convince some pig-headed youngster of my position on anything important. Plus it’s a whole lot more fun.

Fun is now more important than dignity. I ride the shopping cart through the parking lot. I dance to elevator music. I wear whatever. Truly, youth is wasted on the young. With that said, onward to another solar rotation!

Photo: Not me. But thank you HappyBirthdayCake2015.com

 

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And at my age…

old_lady-1So I had another birthday. It seems they come at me a little faster each year. I’m not complaining, because it’s better than not having them show up at all ever again. My dad is quick to point out that years are like toilet paper: the closer you get to the end, the faster it goes. I think I still have a few more squares left on my roll, but I’ll admit I’m no spring chicken. I’m not even sure I’m a summer chicken anymore, for that matter. Regardless, I am now at an age where there are a few things I just will no longer do.

I will no longer worry about my vanity. I’m not too proud to ask for my senior discount. Over 50? Oh yes, ma’am! Give me that additional 10% off. I was recently at a little community concert and asked for a senior ticket. The woman selling them squinted her eyes, tipped her head back to scrutinize me through her bifocals, and said it was only for those over 50. HA! I whipped out my driver’s license (it has a little piece of scotch tape folded over the end so I can get it out quickly – that’s what you do when you’re over 50) and told her to read it and weep. Or I could read it for her since it wasn’t in big print. Now give me the $3 off, sister!

I will no longer drive a vehicle that can accommodate two kids, their friends, their sports gear, enough groceries for a tribe of indigenous people, and has the option for video screens in the back. Not that I would ever have video screens in my mom-mobile anyway.  “Quit crying kiddies and look out the window. That’s called life out there.” I now drive something small and sporty with seat warmers and a sunroof. My youngest son cannot possibly fit in the back seat, and I’m okay with that. He can drive himself in my cast-off, video-free, mom-mobile because every teenager should drive the family car at some point in their life. It builds character. I drove a ’72 Pontiac Bonneville. It was two-tone: light blue and rust. I’m a better person for it.

I will no longer make friends based solely on my children’s activities. I’ve met great friends sitting on bleachers, but at this point, I want more than physical proximity and a shared hatred for team fundraisers. It’s what happens when you hit 50+. So, yeah, Happy Birthday to me!

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Old Enough to Know Better

ringsAs I hippy-hop past another birthday and deeper into the world of Over 50 (Let’s pause here while you gasp in disbelief that I could possibly be over 50. No really, I’ve already stopped. Go ahead and gasp. At least try to fake some semblance of surprise. Okay, whatever, let’s move on), blah blah into the world of Over 50, I’m surprised at the advice that’s out there to tell me what I can and can’t do now at this age. I recently saw an article on the internet, “What Not to Wear After 50.”

Do they mean, if I’ve worn it 50 times, it’s time to go shopping? Surely, they aren’t going to tell me what I can or can’t wear. Otherwise, I believe they’ve missed the whole point of being over 50, which is I don’t care what you think I should wear or not wear. I can wear whatever I want and not give a patootie what anyone thinks about it.

Now, let me qualify. By this point in my life, I have developed the good sense to not wear pajamas in public. Unless you regularly sleep in the streets, no one should wear pajamas out of the house. Same with yoga pants. If you’re not going to actually do yoga, then wear something else. You don’t walk around in football pants if you’re not going to play football, do you? You don’t have to have a massive brain trust to figure that out.

Here’s a few more pointers. Don’t wear your heart on your sleeve. Don’t wear out your welcome. Don’t wear your problems like a badge of courage, because, really, it’s more like a wet sweater that smells like a dirty yak. Oh yeah, and don’t wear sequins before dark. That’s pretty universal for any age.

If you are over 50, may I suggest you wear feathers at some point. There doesn’t need to be an occasion other than you want to wear feathers. Wear a tiara. It makes you stand taller so it’s good for your posture. Guys, I’m not going to say feathers and tiaras don’t apply to you, too. That’s your call. If you’re over 50, you’re old enough to make that decision. Most importantly, wear at least one really big, gaudy ring. This will enhance the visibility of the hand gesture you make at anyone who wants to tell you what you can or can’t wear.

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The Child My Parents Wished Upon Me

IMG_0428This week my youngest son is turning 16. It is truly factual proof of the enduring grace of a merciful God that he has made it this far, because without that, I would have probably killed him a long time ago. Every family has that kid that’s likely to jump off the roof in Superman pajamas or try and drive the school bus in third grade to impress a girl. Okay, he’s not exactly that kid, but close. If the truth be told, this is the child my parents wished upon me. Sorry Mom and Dad, I get it. Paybacks are hell.

When this boy was about five, he deposited his birthday money into his savings account at the credit union on an extremely busy payday Friday. As a reward, they let him pick a prize out of their treasure chest. Naturally, he picked the whoopee cushion. Naturally. Then while I’m distracted with other banking business, he blows it up far beyond its manufacturer’s recommended specifications, places it in the chair, launches his sturdy, five-year old body into the air and comes down on the whoopee cushion. I pause here because it’s still difficult to talk about. The thing exploded like a gunshot! People were screaming and diving for cover! The security officer pulled his weapon! I’m almost positive the tellers were on the verge of activating a full lockdown.Tom

I was mortified. For years I had to hire a babysitter so I could go make my car payment. Even then, I wore dark glasses and a baseball cap. There is no amount of time that erases that kind of public trauma. If that weren’t enough, he wanted to know if we could patch the whoopee cushion so he could do it again.

His resume includes hundreds of dollars in broken windows and broken bones, not to mention a wide swath of structural and collateral damage. By reputation alone, he’s immediately tied to significant natural and manmade disasters.

But here’s the thing, the big blue eyes and mischievous smile are irresistible. He’s got the world’s biggest heart, a spirit that’s selfless and unendingly loving. He’d give you the shirt off his back or, if he really liked that shirt, he’d swipe the shirt off someone else’s back for you. At the end of the day, he’s truly an amazing young man who will probably do great things. So Happy Birthday, Tom!

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I’m How Old?! Say what?!

Jean dress upI turn 50 today, as hard as that is to believe. Okay, maybe it’s only hard for me to believe. But it’s true. This is my grand Jubilee birthday! My golden anniversary of life! Half way to 100 and picking up speed. There are a number of benefits to being my somewhat advanced age – not a lot, but a few – and a growing list of things from which I should now automatically be exempt.

No woman older than 50 should have to be a bridesmaid. At this age, a true friend would never ask you to stand in front of a church wearing the same dress as three or four other women. She might ask you to vouch for her sanity during a quickie ceremony in Vegas, but that’s not exactly being a bridesmaid. That’s closer to being a bail bondsman.

Women my age should no longer be expected to drive a minivan. Moms with toddlers and U-7 soccer players can swear all they want about how comfortable they really are to drive and how convenient they are to have. But by age 50, we all know they’re lying in an effort to buffer their own humiliation. Minivans are just an oversized extension of your purse on wheels with an onboard video monitor. Massive SUV’s are only cleverly disguised minivans, but women over 50 already know that, too. We should drive luxury sedans or sports cars with seat warmers, not bottle warmers.

I am now old enough to make friends with people I actually like being around, not just because they are around. My friendships are no longer simply based on playgroups, carpools or youth sports. These days, my friends have figured out that I’m beyond the reach of personality rehabilitation and have decided to hang around me anyway. We’ve all accepted that the cure for me will not be found during our lifetimes!

Around the age of 50, you’re exempt from wearing shoes that aren’t comfortable even if they go with your outfit. You are exempt from ridiculous trends like wearing pajama pants out in public. At this age, you’re old enough to know better. Same with skinny jeans, yoga pants and booty shorts. But those might apply to any age.

The best part of being 50 is that if you’re a bit off your rocker, you’ve earned it honestly and can wear it proudly. So, thank you very much, that’s exactly what I’ll do!

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