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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Wait – I Used to Know The Answer to That One!

It might not be apparent in looking at me now, but I used to know exactly what was going on. Why, I remember being 18 years old and being absolutely convinced that, for instance, not only would I never gain weight, but I would never ever have bad breath, stretch marks, or cellulite. I would never spank a child. I would never be caught up in the work-bill-work-bill cycle.

I would never know – personally or Biblically – a Republican.

Since then, of course, I’ve gone to do/be/do/be/do, in the words of Frank Sinatra, all of those things.

I’m not ashamed. I’ll do it again! What are you looking at?! You don’t know me!!

Or maybe you do. Because I suspect that I am – gasp! – quite commonplace in some of these confessions…

For example: Love. Oh, you shoulda asked me about it years and years ago. I knew all about love! I knew so much I could yammer on about it for absolute hours!

And now?

Now I’m aware of how very many variations of love there are.

And not just the physical variations that would have been at the front and center in my youth. (Please see earlier post on my dirty mind. Thank you.)

And how about my recent bout with technical inflammation? You know, the one where my computer starts making ridiculous demands (Disable my cookies! Reboot me! Let me show you how to get discount pharmaceuticals delivered to your door in a plain brown wrapper!) and eventually slows to a pace designed to make me think of taking up subsistence farming and checking into all this fuss I’ve been hearing about the Mennonites…

They’ll have a place for me, won’t they?

It’s funny. In a stretch of unpaved reality just north of the Mobius strip, I’ve come to realize the more I know, the less I understand, and the more I understand, the less I know.

It’s making me dizzy, just thinking about what I thought I knew, what I used to know, and what I don’t know yet..

And so I’ll stop.

If at 40 I realized how ridiculous I was at 30, what do you suppose I will realize at 50?

Maybe it's best I wait on the speculation there. No sense in getting ahead of myself.

28 comments:

Irisheyes said...

I would comment, but I have a busy day of decorating my fake apartment, working at the fake bakery to buy some fake clothes, harvesting my fake crops and if I have any spare time at all, I may induldge in a quick game of Farkle. I apologize for not having the time to comment on this one.

Ms Sparrow said...

As one who is well into her 60's, I would like to say that knowledge is like a leaky bucket, the more you accumulate on top, the more that leaks out the bottom. That's how we maintain the status quo of stupidity.

Oh My Goddess said...

Wait, I can figure this out: If at 40 I something something at 30 than something something at 50, No, forget it, I never could to word problems. Even at 18.

Om. Om. Om.

That's better.

Jess said...

I think that all might stop about 65! I totally look forward to the day when I know everything...I sure hope that wasn't yesterday!

Linda said...

Well, at 55 I often comment that my hard drive is full. I can only learn something new if I delete some old stuff.
Just saying that you say something a lot means you're getting older, lol.
At least I realize I say it a lot, I haven't moved on to the next stage of repeating stories endlessly.
I think.

CatLadyLarew said...

Okay, I'm 56 and I also used to have all the answers, but no more! Now I'm paying for all those times I looked at my mother with disdain, wondering how she could have let herself go!

BTW: That's why I have a kid... so he can remind me what the answers are.

Jeanne said...

All I can say is Amen. Although, honestly, my 40's seem to have been when I started coming up with workable answers....

Kavi said...

Yes. How ridiculous the 20s and 30s were ! hmm. Maybe it should stop at 18 ! Ok. 20. But nothing more.

On another note...i am willing to stomach everything. But the probable proximity to GB is gut wrenching !

;)

Daffy said...

There is something to 'Ignorance Is Bliss'

MamaOtwins+1 said...

I've deciding being oblivious is the way to go - I just don't want to know or I may explode.
Of course it doesn't help that I am going backwards and am having to relearn what < and > mean so I can help the boys with their homework (thank goodness for google).

Douglas said...

With age comes wisdom... and wrinkles... and creaky joints... and gray hair... and highly imaginative nostalgia.

Jayne Martin said...

When I was younger there was all that angst over trying to figure life out and "grow". Now, at 60, I'm grown. This is it. This is who I turned out to be. Plus I got a really cool tattoo of puckered lips done on my ass.

kimber p said...

wow, you really hit this one square on the noggin...

I feel like I know almost everything I thought I knew in my teens, but was totally clueless about in my 20's, and was struggling to find out in my 30's.

The only problem is, I need to write it down, because it never sticks!!

mrwriteon said...

I have a few years on you and I think I know less than you do by this point. Be forewarned. Your ignorance about life will expand exponentially. But, you know, you'll be more comfortable with that because it makes fewer demands.

Happy Hour...Somewhere said...

When I was young, I had always hated the saying, "The more things change, the more they stay the same." Yeah, right, you old fart saying that. Like you had the internet, cell phones, etc., back then. I mean, you had to get off the couch to change the channel. But now, at 52, that saying is so true. I may know less STUFF but I also know human nature a little better (just a little) and what a constant that is. And I care less about what I don't know because I can always learn what is important.

ellen abbott said...

Well, when I turned 50 I let go of a lot of expectations...of myself and others.

Like Grandpa Simpson said...I used to be with it but then it changed. Now it's all weird and scary and one day it'll happen to you to(or something to that effect).

powdergirl said...

Pearl, Pearl, Pearl,
Have I mentioned my Mennonite background?

If you want to sign up, you'll have to pretend none of those physical variances of love ever happened.

Even the slightest memory of these events could lead to dancing, which is verboten.

There's been a fuss? Are they on to me?

Kevin Musgrove said...

I've come to the conclusion that the forgetfulness of age is a survival mechanism. If we knew too much we'd never get out of bed in the morning.

Green-Eyed Momster said...

If I'd had the wisdom that I have now, when I was 20 years old, I would have had a lot less fun...(And, fewer addictions to overcome.)
No matter what Pearl, you'll ALWAYS be younger than me! Feel better?

Hugs!!

justsomethoughts... said...

remindsme of the quote from mark twain:

“When I was a boy of 14, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be 21, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years.”

otin said...

When you are 50, you will probably realize that when you were 40 that you should have acted like you were 30 which would be a smarter version of when you were 2o, but a more carefree version of when you were 40!

Janie at Sounding Forth said...

I was gonna post something, but I'm 53. And dang it, I forgot what it was.

Pop and Ice said...

I realized at 50 that I was never ridiculous and that I have little to regret. Or maybe I just forgot all the stupid stuff I did. Alzheimer's does run in the family so.....here's to living in my sixth decade, not being ridiculous and regretting even less.

May you also enjoy your fifth decade of life without regret or that endless dissection that some people do over their lives.

WrathofDawn said...

You DO come up with the answers in your 40s. Then (buh buh BUH!) menopause and you are so busy trying to hang on to your rapidly departing brain cells you don't have time to worry about what you know anymore.

What were we talking about?

tattytiara said...

My grandmother lived to be 102. Somewhere in her mid-nineties she gave up trying to figure it all out in favour of throwing it all out. She died with a very clean house and an even tidier mind.

troutay said...

In my 50's and soon to be eligible as a real senior citizen, I have decided that if forgotten, things weren't that important after all. All the things I remember are things that are the best of life: love, friends,
etc.
All the rest of the stuff? out of sight, out of mind.......

That Baldy Fella said...

If I knew now what I knew then but also knew now what I'm going to eventually know then I'd probably still be confused...

Knucklehead said...

Yeah, jeez, no kidding. Age kinda creeps up on you, and it's not fun.

Ah well, beats that alternative, I suppose.