Monday, October 06, 2003

Crackin' up over a phrase Toby of vividblurry used to describe a man in his late 30s (see his October 5 entry).

"Middle aged."

Only a kid, right?

About a month ago, I was hanging around the bar (surprise!) with a few friends, and some random girl wandered up and engaged us in conversation. I have no idea how the topic came up, but she was shocked to learn that my friends and I were in our forties. For some reason, that really pissed me off, which is sort of wild, considering that I usually pride myself on looking slightly younger than I am.

I guess I just decided at that moment that there was nothing wrong with being born during the Eisenhower Administration, and that strangers shouldn't assume that everyone born before 1976 looks like, well, Eisenhower.

I can change almost everything if I want -- my weight, physique, eye and hair color, style, career... -- but I'm never gonna be able to change my age. I'll continue to jokingly claim that I'm 35 until I die (that's sort of my equivalent to Jack Benny's "39") but I'll always be proud to have been born in the waning days of 1958, because (a.) I really don't have any choice in the matter, and (b.) you really do gain some wisdom and maturity with age.

(Also, if I was 20 again, I'd be saddled with the hair and fashion of the 70s, and I really don't think we want to go back there, do we?)

So, yes, I will be 45 years old before this year ends, but I'm not middle-aged. I am merely better seasoned.

Now hand me my walker. I want to get some air...