Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Things I Thought I Would Never Do.

In every life, one must accept the inevitable evidence that one is getting old. That is usually punctuated by the necessary repeal of the declaration "I would never do that", which one so blithely and vehemently uttered in one's youth.

1. Get irrationally irritated by the clothing styles of the generation behind mine. Today at the mall there was a young man walking ahead of me with his waistband half way down his thighs and a shirt that could conveniently doubled as a hot tub cover. It pissed me right off. I was tempted to go up to him and congratulate him on his recent and sudden weight loss. ("You must be so proud of yourself!") I also saw a young woman wearing a teeny-tiny shirt sporting a Playboy bunny logo, and I wanted to give her a good talking to. I used to be hip, but clearly, now I'm not.

2. Get a little wire trolley. I did finally acquire one of those little pull-along trolleys, the ones that scream "I'm really old!". Believe it or not, the Tattooed One was tossing out her grandmother's one day when I happened to give her a ride home. "Are you getting rid of that?" I asked, "Do you want it???" she replied, with barely concealed horror. "Absolutely I do", came the reply.

3. Wake up early. When I was a teenager and prepared to sleep for Canada had it been an Olympic sport, I couldn't fathom why my father would get up way before everyone else in the mornings. Why get up when you don't have to. But now my eyes sproing open at 6 a.m. no matter what, and I just get up and get stuff done, rather than just lie there mad at the world for not being able to sleep.

4. Eat mushrooms, olives and bananas with spots. I'm not quite sure why I hated all three of these so much before, but now I eat them willingly, even the bananas. (My children have taken up the helm, and refuse to eat bananas with the teeniest trace of brown on them. I end up trying desperately to merchandise the ideal bananas for the 20 minutes or so that they are at their peak. "Does anyone want a banana? They're perfect right now."

5. Wear slippers. When I was a kid, I marvelled at the kids in the Brady Bunch who kept their slippers on the floor and dutifully slid into them as they exited their beds. Who's that organized? But then I realized my feet were cold from October until May, and suddenly, that little bit of logistics seemed to make perfect sense.

6. Stretch my arm out to read something. There is something just so surrendering about that iconic, middle aged gesture of picking up something you want to read and moving it farther away in order to see it. I swore I wouldn't do it, I'd never need to do it, but my retinas had other plans.

7. Leave the house without makeup. There was a time when the idea of leaving the house without the full compliment of makeup on was an anathema to me; it was akin to going out naked. At some point in my life I stopped wearing makeup at all unless I was at work, and also? nobody's looking at me anyway.

8. Buy Tender Tootsies. In case you didn't know, Tender Tootsies are the official footwear of grannies and nuns the world over. Shoes guaranteed to fend off male attention within 50 miles, they A) practical, B) comfortable and C) supremely ugly. But, I tried some on at Sears once, without knowing they were Tender Tootsies (that part is important) and they were so comfortable I nearly collapsed with delight to have them on my feet. Then I realized what they were, but I was in hook, line and sinker, because for once in my adult life, I had shoes that didn't qualify as a human rights violation. So I bought them.

9. Hate crowds. I used to love the fair, the hustle and bustle of the mall at Christmas, the buzz of a movie on opening day! Now I just want to be there all by myself. Walking in crowds makes me particularly cranky. I think that just because people come equipped with feet does not mean they know who to use them. If you have to get a licence to drive a car, then I think a licence to walk should not be out of the question.

10. Not know what's on tv, who's singing on the radio, or on the cover of People magazine. It all blends. Celebrities come in two forms for me now, those I know and those I don't. The first category is small, and the second is huge and I don't care.


Big Liver Girl said...

A fine piece of bloggery my friend! It was comforting to hear my glam friend falling into the ways of middle age with the same astonishment as me.
I HATE what perfect strangers often wear (and can't believe I generate all that negativity in one judgemental moment- if only I could use my powers for good instead of evil)!

My favourite far-sighted example was when my worthy opponent on the squash court backed almost into a corner to read the outcome of the spin on teh end of her racquet. A very good sight (ooo pun) gag.

And slippers... I think that's about being a capricorn. Old when you're young and all. My local capricorn has not been slipperless indoors (regardless of the season) for almost as long as we've been married.

Erin said...

Hey Ruth...

I am only 32 and am having to agree with numbers 1, 3,5,7 and 9 on your list. What's happening to me??

The spots on the bananas are still repulsive to me -- will that change when I hit 40? The wire trolley hasn't hit me yet, but my sister who's 35 just got one. Yikes!!

I'd like to replace the one about stretching my arms to read with this: A Sudden Fascination with Fibre and Regularity. The middle aged thing hits hard and fast! I didn't even recognize the small signs until your pointed them out.

Thanks for your humor and insight...

(Ethan's mom)

Big Liver Girl said...

and the word "sproing"... gotta love it!