Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Aging Meme

Zoe’s Mom so very helpfully tagged me for a meme, so everyone is spared my thoughts on the Presidential debate. Charlotte recently tagged me for a meme, too. I guess everyone wants to keep me away from politics. I will do hers next.

Here’s ZM’s:

The Aging Meme
all you have to do is fill in the blanks...

At a certain age women should decide that their weight and bra size do not matter (I wish it would happen for all women at age twelve. Alas, I have yet to reach that age. When will I?)

At a certain age men should decide that a woman’s weight and bra size do not matter. (Do they ever?)

When I was a kid I thought I would live in all kinds of foreign and exotic places.

Now that I am older I wish I had lived in more foreign countries.

You know you are too old to party when the only thing you want to do after three margaritas is go to bed (to sleep).

You know you are too young to retire when you get bored after four days of sitting around the house.

When I was in high school I listened to the music of David Bowie, Jethro Tull, Queen, The Pretenders, and Talking Heads (and much, much more, but I’ll stop at five).

Nowadays I find I like the music of Feist, Emmylou Harris, Steeleye Span, Dar Williams, and Michelle Shocked (and much, much more, but I’ll stop at five, while noting that I still like David Bowie, Queen, The Pretenders, and Talking Heads. I had exceptionally good taste for a teenager).

On my last birthday I got a digital camera I wanted as a gift and that I still don’t know how to use very well, because I can't be bothered to read through an instruction manual that's on a CD (see? I really am a Luddite!).

On my next birthday I want to go to NYC.

The best birthday present I ever got was a trip to Belize and Guatemala (my 40th from Bob)

The first time I felt grown up was when I was 19, and my father was struggling with problems he was having with my brother, who was 16 at the time. It was nothing more than rebellious, son-to-father-type stuff and was very normal, but my father had had three daughters before that, was getting older, and had not been prepared, I don’t think, for this difficult stage of his son’s life. I remember one evening, when I was home from college, he said to me (after yet another fight with my brother), so pitifully (and somewhat desperately), “Maybe I’ve really screwed up with you kids, but all I ever did was love all of you so much and want the best for all of you.” He’d never been so candid with me about such things, and it was such a testimony to how lost he felt, at times, in this whole business of parenting. I suddenly found myself seeing my parents not as parents, but as people, and I was able to sympathize with them in a way I never had.

The last time I felt like a kid was oh, all the time. It’s only because I have mirrors (and memories) that tell me otherwise that I know I’m not.

When I read The World According to Garp (at age 15!) it changed my life. Sometimes I wish I hadn’t read such an adult book at such a young age. Other times, I’m so glad I did.

Last year was very trying.

Next year I hope to complete the novel I’ve been struggling to write. We’ll see…

Tagged: Charlotte (turnabout is fair play), Eva (who is So young and yet so wise), and Ian (just to get him to post on his blog).


Eva said...

Awww: now you know that flattery will get you everywhere. ;) I loved reading your answers, and the one to 'you know're you too old..' has to be the best use of parantheses I've seen in a long time. Perhaps forever!

stefanie said...

I still feel like a kid most of the time too and rarely do I feel grown up. I think because I don't have children it makes a big difference.

Cam said...

You can actually drink 3 margaritas??? I must be really old! :)

Enjoyed reading this.

Dorothy W. said...

Becky tagged me, so I'll have to think of my own answers. I hope that next year isn't nearly as trying for you and then you do complete that novel next year!

Emily Barton said...

Eva, can't wait to see your answers.

Stef, I think you're right. When you don't have kids of your own, it's easier to always feel like a kid.

Cam,I don't know. I haven't tried to drink 3 margaritas in years, but I'm pretty sure I know what would happen if I did!

Dorr, oh goody. Can't wait to see your answers. And thanks for the good wishes.

ZoesMom said...

Thanks again for doing this meme. I really enjoyed your answers. I think you did have exceptionally good taste in music as a teenager! I read Garp as a young age too and it was life-changing.

Oh, and can I help celebrate your next birthday in NYC?

Emily Barton said...

ZM, you're welcome. And absolutely you can join me to celebrate my next b'day in NYC!

IM said...

Emily, I must admit I felt mixed emotions reading about the trouble Daddy and I had during my teen-age years. Part of me is glad you posted this story, and it's interesting to hear it from his point of view. Still its not a period of my life that I'm proud of and may be too personal for me to fully endorse. Sorry, all love. Ian

IM said...

PS: its perefectly fine not to accept these two comment to be posted on your blog. Love Ian.

JHS said...

"At a certain age men should decide that a woman’s weight and bra size do not matter. (Do they ever?)" Bravo!

Good luck with the novel. It's an ongoing struggle to find time to concentrate and work on a big writing project, isn't it?