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Sunday, August 8, 2010

Everything's Starting to Click

I got an e-mail this week from an old friend bemoaning the gradually-increasing strength of his “forgeterrer” and the fact that his “rememberer” is broken.

As someone who has repeatedly voted against the aging process – and I think the record will bear me out on this – I must say that this has not been my experience. My rememberer is working just fine, thank you; and except for the occasional confusing foray from one room to another only to find myself standing in front of an open refrigerator for no discernible reason, I remain in full control of all of my faculties.

Hee hee. Had you going there, didn’t I? Oh, come on. Play along, and let’s pretend that we’re not all getting older!

I have an acquaintance who, according to his friends, has not changed one bit since graduating from high school. Still the partying frat boy. This is not as charming as you’d think. Just to get under his skin a bit, I mentioned the concept of “middle age” to him. Heartily offended, he said that he was absolutely not middle aged. “You’re 34,” I said, “Just how long are you going to live?”

So maybe 34 is not as middle-aged as, say, 40 or 45, but one is certainly moving towards checking a different box in the demographic information sheets. And apart from the ability to lose weight easier in one’s younger days, what’s the big deal? Would you ever go back to the hormonal, hyper days of your youth? Not in a million years. I was an impetuous, bewildered nutcase in my 20s (and 30s and…). I barely made it through the first time and that was before cell phones, FaceBook, and rampant tattoos. Can you imagine what kind of horrors I escaped just by not having those things available?

It’s just now, comfortably, almost comatosely in my 40s, that things are really starting to click for me. And I’m not just talking about my knees and neck here. I mean that things are beginning to make sense. What a relief! I guess in the long run I’d rather have it this way – being confused in the beginning and then gaining clarity as I go along – than the other way around…

Wait a minute. What was I just going on about? Something about clarity or something.

Oh, well. Whatever it was, I’m sure I’ll remember eventually. In the meantime, I’m going to step into the kitchen for a bit, just to check out what’s in the fridge. Let me know if I can get you anything.

31 comments:

Sam Liu said...

I hope I get wiser with age, Pearl. For now, in youth, the world makes very little sense. It reminds of that beautiful Madeleine L'Engle quote, that a fellow blogger brought to my attention a few days ago:

"When we were children, we used to think that when we were grown-up we would no longer be vulnerable. But to grow up is to accept vulnerability...To be alive is to be vulnerable."

Irish Gumbo said...

Grab me a beer, would you please? And maybe some gingko biloba, while you are at it? Although I can't remember why I needed it...:)

Susan Deborah said...

It is very funny indeed to observe how different people grapple with age. Everyone has their own strategies and methods.

Can you pass on some ice-cream, please. Will help me cool my nerves while I am at my thesis.

Swimming week ahead, Pearl.

Joy always,
Susan

Sweet Cheeks said...

Catfood
Toilet Paper
Bananas
The Good Shrimp

Oh damn...I thought I was writing up a grocery list.

Sorry.
=]

a Broad said...

< Things that click .. not talking about neck and knees > LOL

I generally remember why I walked into the room. But then, I seem to be so full of good ideas, that while talking about one, I forget what I was saying... in the middle of it .. and it was such a great idea :(

Sarah said...

First time was hard enough indeed. I wouldn't mind to have fewer wrinkles though.

CatLadyLarew said...

Who would ever want to go back to those hormonal days? Just grab me a beer. Or wait... did you already get me one? I can't remember.

dirt clustit said...

riiggghht nice try (the prompt was for a backwards day ie everything in reverse)

pretty sure that means stully not funny.

Herding Cats said...

I think it's important to embrace whatever age you are at. I can't wait for my 30s (and 40s) and beyond!

Casey Freeland said...

I'm 42 and I still don't feel like I'm middle-aged. I just don't like the title. I'm going to go from being normal-aged to being dead. That's the plan and I'm sticking to it. I just shaved off my facial hair for the first time in two years. Someone said I looked 25. Well he said I looked like many years ago I was probably 25. I guess that's not the same thing.

I'm craving Spam. What were we talking about?

Casey

Barbara Blundell said...

Hi Pearl
You can use the memory selectively and make it work to your advantage For instance , "What is that funny sole shaped thing with a flex and a plug that lives under the stairs It has some sort of reservoir for liquid --tea ? coffee ? alcohol ? "Fortunately R knows what it does and how to use it. Also "There are a lot of empty lidless tins in the cupboard some round,some square some loaf shaped. " Unfortunately R also cannot 'remember' what these are for . Do you know ?

Janie at Sounding Forth said...

Ditto Irish. Wait. What did I ask for? Where am I? Who am I?

Douglas said...

You have hit upon the very reason I have eschewed celebrating birthdays. Well, that and my showing up at the last one I celebrated dressed for the occasion... my birth. I thought it was humorous and I thought most of the women there did also. They certainly were laughing... and pointing, as I recall. Anyway, I have always had that occasional memory lapse (odd that it only affects the non-humiliating stuff) and found myself wondering just where the heck I was going when I stepped out of a room.

They do not happen any more often now than they did back in my 20's. Though, back then, I could blame it on the drugs and alcohol.

Miss Footloose said...

Nice post! We're going to live till we're a hundred, so prepare yourself: Eat lots of plain yogurt (B12), stand on your head (yoga etc.) and dance!! (good for your disposition and for your bones ;) Oh, and of course, lots of sexual congress keeps you young and is good for the heart.

And if one day you cannot find that favorite black wool skirt, this is how you find it:

http://tinyurl.com/2ceu2ug

Karen said...

My husband says I walk into a room full of purpose then something catches my eye. I pick up the socks and go to drop them in the laundry room but I never make it there. Yet I am constantly busy.

It's a wonder my house never gets cleaned. At lease I manage to remember to make dinner every night.

Madame DeFarge said...

I wouldn't return to my 20s for anything. Ghastly times all round. But I have no great desire to grow old to be honest. I can feel the hand of age starting to grasp my bones and I really wish it wouldn't. I'm not looking forward to it at all.

Gigi said...

I had a GREAT comment! Then I got distracted by reading the other comments. Now mine's gone....

Gregory said...

grab me a beer, on the way over stop at the liquor cabinet, grab me a shot of Jim Beam and we will have a heart to heart discussion on whatever it was you were rambling about... forgetting or some shit like that..... :)

Cheeseboy said...

Pearl, your blog is my favorite blog. I mean that, FAVORITE! (Sorry commenters that we might share as readers.) And I read a lot of blogs. Every post is entertaining or interesting and well written. I just thought I'd let you know. I mean that in all sincerity, FAVORITE.

Have you read any books by Sloan Crosley? Your writing styles are remarkably similar. She is also one of my favorite authors.

Anyway, I am 34 and someone mentioned the other day that I was "middle aged" now and it totally blew my mind. 40 is middle age, 34 is muddling around in adolescence still.

Meg said...

I have embraced getting "older and bolder" but my mother certainly never mentioned the hairs on my chin that "pop" every night whilst i sleep!

Jeanne said...

I'll take noisy, brittle joints over noisy, brittle emotions any day.

imtsmom said...

Forty used to middle age. But that was until I turned 40 - and beyond. Now I'm pretty sure 65 must be middle age. Oh, and the forgetting what the heck it was you had in mind when you walked into that room with such purpose, if I remember right it doesn't happen more often as you age - and hopefully you will - it just.... Yeah, get me a beer too please

RawknRobynsGoneBlogWild said...

What's that? You'd like something from my fridge? There's not much to choose from, but you are more than welcome to help yourself.

When do I get to forget that I'm middle aged? (I suppose it won't happen until I'm elderly.)
xoRobyn

Tempo said...

Why do we trek to the fridge several times a day just to stand there looking in? It's not like the fridge fairy has been there to stock it up in the meantime...
Like your friend I dont get past middle age..my life expectancy goes up with each birthday...so far I have to live at least until 2125.

恩宛玲如 said...

人生中最好的禮物就是屬於自己的一部份............................................................

IndigoWrath said...

It's just like nice Mr. Kipling said...

"If you can stand in front of an open refrigerator with a screwdriver in your hand, totally bemused but DO NOT PANIC, then you shall be a man, my son."

Nota Bene said...

Fortunately I've always been forgetful, so in middle age I have nothing to worry about

Gaston Studio said...

I'm way past middle age and think I'm much wiser for it, so you definitely have something to look forward to. Of course, remembering this will take some effort.

vanilla said...

My rememberer and my forgetterer work nicely in tandem, thus I remember (and embellish) the good times and have forgotten the bad (there must have been some?) times!

Where did I put the darn keys?

Bossy Betty said...

Dang! I keep forgetting to vote!

Murr Brewster said...

Since you're probably on the leeward side of menopause, let me warn you that it is a fanny-kicker and it will scour your brains out and substitute pudding till you can't even finish a simple

But it's all totally worth it for the