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Category Archives: almost 50

~ The Big One! ~

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I’m not going to pretend that turning 50 isn’t a bit freaky. Even saying 50 feels weird. 50, 50, fiftyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!!!!

The anticipation leading up to a new decade is always daunting. But now that I’m here, 50 doesn’t feel the way I imagined it would. 50 always seemed to be the entryway to “old.” My impression of 50-somethings were frumpy older characters on TV shows or the schleppy older neighbour down the street; basically, anyone who is frumpy, old and schleppy. But when I look at my almost 50-year-old friends and famous folks who are turning 50, I see fit, vibrant, and very hot guys and gals!

Among many others, Julia Roberts, Nicole Kidman, Lisa Bonet, Jason Statham, Jamie Foxx and Liev Schreiber are all 1967 babies. Not bad company at all. True, I’m no Nicole Kidman (though M would counter, “She’s no Bonnie Kim!” Yup, M’s good like that). Besides getting some help from great makeup artists and lighting directors, Nicole clearly has exceptional genes on her side. I mean, have you seen her in the HBO series Big Little Lies? Gorgeous!

Sure, there are moments when I feel a bit creakier and crepier than before but, for the most part, 50 isn’t looking or feeling that crappy at all.

So, in no particular order, here are some of the best and worst things about turning The Big 5-0!

The best thing about turning 50 is the fun party M is throwing me. Food, drinky poos, ping pong, and a bunch of people I enjoy eating, drinking and ping ponging with, gathering together to celebrate MEEEEE!!!!!!!!! Playing ping pong (is it “playing ping pong” or “ping ponging?”), brings out the kid in me, and triggers fits of laughter and other curious vocalizations. At the end of the night, my face will have an imprint of every joyfully expressive moment. That’s the ironic pay-off for having fun – looking old when I’m feeling young.

The worst thing about turning 50 is when I tell people I’m turning 50, and their reaction is something like, “Wow! Happy Birthday!” and not something more appropriate like, “What?! Get the fuck out?! You don’t look a day over 35!” Throw a gal a bone people!

The best thing about turning 50 is, aside from falling asleep on the couch before 9pm, getting tipsier than usual after just two cocktails, and how ridiculously easy it is to throw my back out (opening the cheese drawer in the fridge anyone?!), I don’t physically feel the way I thought 50 would/should feel. I can basically do everything I ever did, I’m just more selective. I mean, there’s no point in both of us getting up and crossing the room to close the door, turn out the light or get my vodka martini with extra olives, etc.

Seriously, if I don’t continue to demonstrate the combinations in my dance classes full-out, I’ll be just a few pas-de-bourrées away from parking my 50-year-old ass in a chair, from which I’ll end up teaching the entire class, banging a stick to keep tempo, shawl draped across the chip on my shoulder, cigarette dangling between my snarling lips, nursing a diet coke and reminiscing about my glory days as a “dahncer.” That’s right, I’ll adopt a nondescript European accent and I’ll be bitter.

The worst thing about turning 50 is I’m often the oldest person in the room.

The best thing about turning 50 is I don’t always look like the oldest person in the room.

The worst thing about turning 50 is it’s sometimes hard to watch those who are older than me, getting older.

The best thing about turning 50 is I say what I mean more often (which can also be the worst thing).

The worst thing about turning 50 is I’ve lived more than half my life.

The best thing about turning 50 is my priorities have become crystal clear.

The worst thing about turning 50 is I have less patience, so I can get bitchy on a dime.

The best thing about turning 50 is I can still turn a head or two!

The worst thing about turning 50 is how invisible I feel in the world sometimes.

As 50 approaches, I don’t have all the answers. I’m kinder to myself. I’m a good person. I have faults. I value good health more than ever before. I don’t forgive easily, if at all. I’m usually self-aware and sometimes a ding-dong. I believe we get what we give. I believe we get in our own way most of the time. I hate complainers, especially when the complainer is me. I think a lot about the world, people, stuff. I’m protective. I have love in my life. I wish I was as generous as my dad.

Happy birthday to all you ‘67 babies!

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~ The One Before 50 ~

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Snippets and general musings as I begin my 49th year.

Everyone who knows me well is aware of my severe phobia of bedbugs. That being said, I love hotels. Ever since I was a kid, I get excited when I walk into a beautiful hotel. I suppose it’s the anticipation of exploring everything new – city, country, lifestyle – and a dreamy home away from home that someone else cleans every day. Throw in a sexy lobby bar, and hello happy hour! I also have a thing for office buildings during Christmas, with the lights and the trees and the shiny marble floors…

On the other hand, motels have always made me feel sad. Something about being in a stale room, next to a remote highway with nothing to do but stay inside your stale room. That and the lonely plastic lawn chair outside the front door. Cue the Counting Crows’ Raining in Baltimore and pass the vodka.

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The 49-year-old neck. Enough said.

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Making all my connections on public transit is a great way to start the day. As an added bonus, it’s fantastic when I get a seat, the seat is clean, there are no inappropriately close-standers (especially when there’s plenty of room), and the door to the train, streetcar or bus stops directly in front of me.

Another great way to start the day is with a killer poop! Sorry, but it’s true and you know it. Especially the kind (and I’ll try not to get too graphic here), that is astoundingly voluminous and thoroughly purging. The kind that amazes me so much, I almost feel like calling M in to witness my dinasauric ever-loving feat! I’m lighter, less bloated and ready to kick up my heels! For a gal who gets backed up just by saying, “backed up,” these rare moments are golden.

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Wheel-trans buses can be late; friends can get side-tracked; doctors can get swamped. But a sincere, “I’m sorry for being late,” really can buffer my irritation… as long as it doesn’t become habitual.

I’m genuinely perplexed by the perpetually late. I’ve read numerous theories and psychological profiles about the chronically late. Whatever the underlying reasons, the bottom line is absolutely, positively and without question NO ONE likes to be kept waiting, even the person who is (wait for it), ALWAYS LATE. What really chafes my ass is when there’s no apparent effort to remedy the lateness, no effort to find a solution. Because then it feels like you don’t give a shit about me, and that’s not cool at all. It’s like bad breath. If you have it, I’ll always think of you as the person with bad breath.

~

Any act of kindness genuinely moves me. Not to get all Kumbaya about it but seriously, when the customer service rep or the parking attendant or the receptionist for that perpetually late doctor is kind, I get tingly happy feelings. I was at the airport flying to the States awhile back and all of humanity seemed to be flying out the same day. Airport staff corralled us in a holding area and only let us line up for customs based on our departure times (so much for arriving 2.5 hours before my flight, thinking I could get through the rigmarole, then lollygag in book stores and duty-free).

Departure time 8:00am!” an agent called out. “Please line up now.” They continued this process every so often, in 5 minute increments. My departure time was 9:10am. No lollygagging for me!

When I finally reached security, there was a gem of a female security agent there to greet me. So friendly and easygoing, her smile and breeziness made the previous 1.5 hours a fading memory.

Despite my conscious effort to be a breezier person, I can turn on a fucking dime, and it’s all I can do to channel my inner peace and fucking calm. Like when M and I were crossing the street in front of the ACC before a Raptors game and it was insane with traffic (meaning cars were not moving), and there was a gap in front of a stopped cab that M and I walked through, and the cab driver randomly honked and scared the shit out of us! I mean where the hell was he in a hurry to go? One more inch forward? I lost my shit and after some erratic hand gestures indicating how pissed off I was, I went up to his window and yelled, “Shut up!” Nothing too serious or threatening, but it’s kind of scary how quickly I can go from breezy to fuck you!

How we cope when confronted with shit, really speaks to the kind of person we are, doesn’t it? I mean bad things can happen, and they can happen to even the best people. I know two people who have faced unimaginable, truly devastating shit, and yet they somehow persevere, maintain their light and positivity without blame, bitterness, fanfare or Facebook. They are my constant beacons of what I hope to be like, during and after, those epically shitty times.

Based on my breezy to fuck you acceleration, I have a ways to go.

Onward to 50.

 

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