Wednesday, September 07, 2005

You Old, Girl!

Regardless of the what the calendar says, autumn has reached Vermont. This part of it, anyway, and another summer is tucked away into what's left of my memory, blurred images of the kids running, chasing crickets, going to the beach, trying to eat ice cream as it melts, the dog that we don't own, napping in our driveway- now in some strange way part of our family.

Marking the end of the season, as always for me is my birthday. And now David's, as well. We celebrate our birthdays in tandem and it's so much more fun now to party with someone who gets so excited about getting older. I don't think much about mine any more and when I had turned 30 it was great to have my son celebrating his first. What a grand distraction!! This year was none too bad, either. Spent some time with family, relaxed, even shopped a bit, by myself. Went to a younger cousin's wedding and danced with my husband for the first time in years. He had bought me a beautiful dress for my birthday and I wore it, loving the way it looked, but having no idea if I was fashionable, looked too old to be wearing it or what. Didn't matter, though because I could dance as well as anyone and no one was laughing at me. At least not out loud.

Sitting to the left of me at the reception was my mother's, cousin's, daughter's boyfriend who was leaving for college in a few days. We talked about his courses and his being excited about heading off into the unknown, sad of course to be leaving his girlfriend still in high school. It was neat and weird to talk to someone so much younger than myself and feeling like I actually had advice to offer this person. Even though I'm a wife and mother of two children, I often wonder how I was let into the world of adults. Like I sneaked, unseen, into a club I'm not meant to be a member of. I still feel the pangs of childhood and even greater now as my children grow and I relive experiences through their eyes. So I'm sitting here talking here with this kid, feeling adult, but still hip enough to converse in a language he understands. I'm actually feeling kind of cool in myself, in my age.

Then the DJ makes all the tables sing a song with the word "love" in it, to the bride and groom. This is to replace the cling-clang of spoons on the wine glasses, lame encouragement to get the happy couple to kiss. So we're all talking at the table about what we can sing and I lean over to my cousin's-three-times-removed boyfriend and say "Oh, how about 'Love Me Do'. That's an easy one we can all sing." He just looks at me, takes a sip of soda.

"What's that?" He clears his throat, tilts his head.
"You know, by the Beatles? 'Love, love me do. You knoooowww...I love you! I'll always be...' "
He's smiling at me and shaking his head.
"I'm sorry, but that's a new one for me," he says.

Oh dear Lord. I am hoping he's making a joke, but he's not. The kid does not have a clue what I'm talking about. He's just got to know it and I sing a bit more, lamely and he's trying to be nice and squinting up toward the ceiling, nodding his head now, saying, "oh, yeah maybe I would know that if I heard it." I just sang the whole, stupid song for him.

"Yeah, well, it was before your time," I tell him. Before mine, too, I think to myself, but we're not so desperate as to go there.

So we sang the song as a group, without the help of my buddy, since he didn't know the words. I stayed away from any potentially age revealing conversation after that point and just hung out with my hubby who's three years older than me but likes to pretend it's more like 10. If I can't remember a glam rock guitarist that he used to emulate he'll say something like, "Oh honey, that was way before your time. You would have just been a little kid then." God bless him!

If you want to have a chuckle at my expense, check out my friend Alyssa's tribute to me on my birthday. Wondered why my blog got so much traffic on a Sunday until I checked where all that traffic was coming from. I wouldn't remember what I did in college if it weren't for her...

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