Thursday, May 29, 2008

When did this happen??

by Susan Seyfarth

It has recently come to my attention that I am no longer a spring chicken.

This should not have been a shock to me. I said goodbye to my twenties some time ago. I've always known that at some point I would have to go blond & stop using the word 'dude' lest I embarrass the children. And yet age blindsided me all the same.

So what happened? Where did all those years between Young & Not Young go? When did aging get so...abrupt? Wasn't it just yesterday that waiters were requesting ID whenever I ordered anything more interesting than soda? That my sisters were killing themselves laughing every time I got offered a child's admission or kiddie menu? When did young men start calling me ma'am & offering to carry my groceries?

I honestly couldn't say. But certain recent events have forced a reckoning. I will offer them now, for your consideration:

1. I recently discovered that the inside of my left forearm is sporting a permanent set of wrinkles from all the hundreds of hours I've spent with a diapered butt on it. Let me say that again: Permanent. Wrinkles. From carrying babies. I actually felt faint when I realized these lines weren't going away within a few minutes (hours, days, I checked) of putting said child down.

2. We were in a restaurant last week & a whole herd of teenagers walked in, sporting their prom finery. They looked so fiercely young & vulnerable & proud & hopeful that I seized up my five year old & said, "Oh, look at the prom kids! Aren't they beautiful?" And then I realized that that's how I think of high schoolers now--kids. Really, really young kids, too. Because they're, like, HALF my age. HALF, people.

3. I read a book in which a fourteen year old character & his girlfriend said they preferred email to IM for love letters because they liked the old school kick of really slowing down & considering each word. They actually called email old school. Okay, I didn't get an email account until I was a senior in college. Enough said.

4. This one isn't technically mine, but it speaks to the point, so I'm using it. A friend was at a meeting & somebody asked a question which was met by total & uncomfortable silence. My friend tried to break the tension by intoning, "Anybody? Bueller?" The silence then went from tense to puzzled because nobody got the reference. He looked around & realized his colleagues were all in their early to mid twenties & had never seen Ferris Bueller's Day Off. My pop culture references are no longer current. Gah.

5. This one is the killer. Totally clinched the deal. So I was on vacation with my folks recently & at some point we washed a load of underwear and socks. At which point I discovered that my mother & I wear identical underpants. Okay, how demoralizing is that? I wear the same underwear--right down to the brand, the style, even the freakin' colors--as a woman thirty years my senior. It could be argued, I suppose, that I have a really, really hip mom. And in many respects, that's true. But we should not be wearing matching undies. I draw the line at that, and am left with this inescapable conclusion:

I'm old.


So how about you? Have you ever had a moment that changed your definition of yourself? When did you discover you'd crossed over? Become Them rather than Us? Old rather than Young? The Man rather than the Rebel? Was it a moment, a series of events, or a slow, gradual slide? Share, because I'm feeling old & alone...


Tawny said...

I can't share anything yet because I'm still laughing so hard I have tears pouring down my face. Same undies as mom? OMGOMGOMG LOLOLOLOLOL

I'm gonna take the rooster and go calm myself... but I'll be back :-D

Jane said...

I knew I crossed over when I notice my memory was getting shoddy. I'm just so absentminded these days. Luckily I haven't sprouted any gray/white hairs yet. I don't know how I'll react when that happens. How could people not know about Ferris Bueller? It's a classic. I really love the pic with the diaper.

Christine Wells said...

Oh, Susan, hilarious as usual!! Apart from the underwear thing (don't even want to know what my mother wears LOL) you are reading my mind! It's my firm belief that the years don't age you, children do. I was at a party a while ago, talking to this bright young thing (who happened to be a year older than I was). I felt such a senior citizen and realized it's the kids that does it. The BYT was single.

Thanks for the laugh. You really crack me up.

Hey, Tawny, congrats on the GR!!

Helen said...

Congrats Tawny on the GR

Fantastic post Susan I agree it just seems to happen when I was in my early 30's my hair started to go grey and I guess that was when it started to hit me but I am over it now.
My Mum god love her used to wear what I call bombay bloomers huge undies with long legs in them so no I will never wear them but thinking about it has given me a great laugh after a hard day at work.
Thanks for brightening (not sure if that is a word see old age) my day.
Have Fun

Maureen said...

I had told my daughter a while ago that I didn't want to have a child turn twenty because then there's no way that your young anymore because it's mathematically impossible. Well, she is heading towards that number at the end of this year and I have to say that I am so glad to have made it through her teenage years so I don't mind being old.

Tiffany Kenzie said...

Hey I'm a young chick and I know Bueller. And the matching undies.... Oh. My. God.

I sure hope you went out and bought some new ones. You did, didn't you?
Isn't forty supposed to be the new twenty? 50 the 30? isn't that how it goes? By that standard I am still a teen. Let's say the rule only kicks in when you hit forty.

I have yet to cross over.

Children do age you, but in a good way. OR so I tell myself... just wait till I hit the teen years... I'm in big trouble.

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

Congrats Tawny, what are you and the GR going to do when you get up?
Susan, you are not alone, and one thing for you to remember, there are some of us that will always be older than you. I realized my age had caught up to me when I was driving and came to a stop light and I put my hand out to hold my mother in her seat. My mother and I had the whole role reversal thing down to an art. That did it for me right there. I think my whole youth thing only lasted about 10-15 years.

Deb Marlowe said...

Yes! What Tiffany said! 40 is the new twenty. That's my story and I'm sticking to it!

LOL on the undies, Susan! Ack!

Terry Odell said...

After I stopped worrying that if you consider yourself old, where does that leave me?, I had to stop and think about the 'crossover' moment.

I'm still waiting. I mean, I know I'm 'old' because I can get senior discounts-- but I haven't grown up, for sure.

There have been moments along the way where I thought I MIGHT be getting old, but I dismissed them.

MAYBE I'll feel more 'mature' when my new grandson can talk and calls me "Gram" or something. But now, I just play CCR for him when I visit, or sing "On Top of Spaghetti" and watch his eyes open wide. (I know, it's my lousy singing).

My mother's the one who seems to worry about the 'old' thing. When I went home for my 20th high school reunion, she wouldn't tell anyone WHY I was there. She couldn't be old enough to have a child 20 years out of high school. Likewise, it didn't really freak her that she became a great-grandmother. What freaked her was that her daughter was a grandmother.

BUT -- in all fairness, yes, I did have one of those moments. I visited my son while he was at UCLA, my alma mater. He invited me to a basketball game. Now, when I was at UCLA, basketball was THE THING. Our team never lost. Everyone went to the games, so sharing one with my son was going to be cool. But then we took our seats, and everyone was so YOUNG. When did they start letting kids go to college? I mean, when I was there, everyone was MY age!

Carol said...

Hi to all,
That travelling GR is keeping us all ' Young at Heart '!
Tawny well done!

Every birthday I'm glad I got to be a year older! Cos' I'm not Dead!

So many friends have bridesmaid died at 53 - bronchial cancer...continued smoking when we gave we it up. (touch wood!)
My brother 53 with a brain tumor,
2 others with pancreas cancer.
Sorry to be down beat ...

But growing older is really terrific, we see our kids grow up to be wonderful people, think about all sorts of ideas with maturity! (I hope!)

Learn to cope with this recent technology...,blogs, HDD/ram/microchips, mobile phones/dvd burners! OMG!

The one I really love having now I'm an 'old boiler' is I don't care what anyone thinks of me...I'm ME...take it or leave it!

Re the nickers ...must be time for us to get into the G-strings
...only way to go!

brownone said...

It's so funny because it just dawned on me this weekend. My youngest turned five and we were having a party for her. My sister was over with my one year old nephew and she was complaining about diaper changes, lack of sleep, temper tantrums, first words and I got all teary eyed. I realized that I completely out of that stage and I don't even have a toddler anymore....I have three school-aged children. In five years my son will be fifteen and want to get a learner's permit!
Oh, and I too noticed a frown wrinkle in my forehead that did not go away when I wasn't frowning....I'm only 33!!

Christie Kelley said...

Susan, thanks for making my morning. I really needed a good laugh this morning. So one of my "old" moments happened years ago when I heard one of my favorite songs on the "oldies" station. I think that might have been the same year I turned 30. Now, I have one teenager and a preteen. They love to remind me that I'm old.

But thanks for the morning laugh!

Beth said...

Susan, you read my mind! My husband and I were just talking about how we still feel/act the same as when we first got married *g* So obviously even though we're getting older (every single day!) we haven't crossed over yet ;-)

But really, I've been addressed as "ma'am" since I was twenty (it's what happens when you get married early and start having kids) so it doesn't bother me. Besides, what else are salespeople, waitstaff etc supposed to call me? "Hey You!" just doesn't cut it *ggg*

PJ said...

I'll be 57 in a few months and I'm looking forward to celebrating that birthday because I'm thrilled to still be here! Sure I have more wrinkles, more aches and pains, but I've learned over the years that you're as old as you think and I'm still thinking young. My husband and parents all died way too young. Losing them put all those wrinkles into perspective and made me realize worrying about getting older was a total waste of time. Instead, I made a vow to enjoy every day I have and that's what I try to do. Sure there are those moments when I curse the wrinkles (like when I try on swim suits...Yech!) but, overall, I really like this stage of my life. I'm happy and more confident than I've ever been. I love today and I can't wait to see what new adventure tomorrow will bring.

Susan Seyfarth said...

Oh, Tawny, I know. It took me a while to get over the same undies as mom thing. I mean, yes, she's an awfully hip mom & all--never wears old lady clothes--but still. I had to go lie down for a few minutes before assimilating that into my vision of myself. :-)

And yes, by all means, take the GR home, give him a little snack & settle in. Let us know what the two of you get up to. And please, if you dress him up, don't tell me that he prefers my undies, too. I don't think I could take it. :-)

PJ said...

You know, I don't think I ever knew what kind of undies my mom wore and I'm perfectly okay with that. It's a visual I just don't need, especially if they were the same kind I was wearing! lol

Susan Seyfarth said...

Hi, Jane! I know what you mean about the memory slipping. Maybe I was in denial, but I totally blamed the children for that. Because if I had gotten more than four hours of sleep in a row at any point during the past five years, I'd be a lot sharper than I am, right? Surely this isn't ALL my eroding synapses & aging brain?? Because I haven't gone gray yet either. I'm still dying for fun, so surely I can't be THAT old.

Besides, you're darn right--Ferris is a classic & anybody who hasn't seen it isn't young, they're ill-educated. Right? Right? Anybody? Bueller?

Susan Seyfarth said...

Hey, Christine! You're right about kids aging you. I totally blame my children for the worst of my aging issues. But I've heard--and maybe some of you with older kids can confirm this--that as the kids get older themselves, they actually start keeping you young. Because they'll force us to keep up with the latest technology/fashion/music just to stay current with their lives. Right now my babies keep me completely immersed in baby stuff & pop culture can go blow. I'd rather sleep. But teenagers are supposed to keep us young.


Susan Seyfarth said...

Helen, that's hilarious about your mom's bombay bloomers! Where the heck did she find such a thing? I tried google images last night to come up with a cute picture of bloomers & everything I found was either a) not cute or b) not, ahem, appropriate. :-) So I'd love to hear if she had a great source for actual bloomers.

Susan Seyfarth said...

Maureen--that's a fabulous insight into aging. Being so happy to have steered your child successfully through the murky waters of teenagehood as a counterbalance to the wrinkles, the gray hair & the fading memory. I'm going to have to remember that. If I can. Maybe I should tattoo it somewhere on my person, like that guy in Momento. Which was a great, if confusing, movie. A mystery as viewed by a guy with dramatic short term memory loss. Anybody seen it?

Terry Odell said...

Ferris Bueller?
I've never sat all the way through Ferris Bueller, although I've seen chunks of it on tv.

For me, I figure anyone who doesn't know what the "Group W Bench" is, is a mere child.

Susan Seyfarth said...

Hey, Tiffany! So glad to hear the young folks do know Bueller & my friend was just working with a bunch of undereducated cretins. lol

And as for the new underwear, well. I'm ashamed to admit this, because it's sort of the nail in my coffin, but...I didn't go get new ones. I really like the ones I (we) have. They don't ride up, they provide excellent coverage of the acreage that is my rear, & they come in cute colors. I tried fancy unders for a while, but I just couldn't get past the itching/discomfort factor of hipper underwear. So go ahead. Call me old. I can take it. :-)

Susan Seyfarth said...

Oh, dianna, the Mom as Seatbelt thing. Yes, that's a sure sign you've gone round the bend, too. Because when did our logic abandon us to the point that we felt karate chopping some poor person in the passenger seat was anything more than insult to the forthcoming injury of the pending auto accident? Do we really believe slapping an arm across this person is going to in some way prevent them from flying out the windshield if that truck roaring up in the rear view actually hits us?

I did this to my sister once when I was in high school--belting her in the gut when we got rear ended. But even then, some small, mean part of my brain registered that it was fun to get a free pass on hitting her. :-)

Susan Seyfarth said...

Deb--the whole forty is the new twenty thing is all that I'm clinging to these days. That & J D Robb books in which middle age is more like sixty because people live so long in the future. Yeah, that makes me feel better. :-)

Susan Seyfarth said...

Hi, Terry! You know what they say about you can't go home again? They mean college. Or maybe anyplace you frequented in college, because yeah, the minute you go back you realize the place is now inhabited by people who were once your peers & are now children. It's...not disturbing exactly, but maybe disorienting. Your memories are so immediate. How could twenty years have gone by?? I'm going to ponder that one.

Susan Seyfarth said...

Carol--thanks for the wonderful blast of fresh perspective! I've actually been waiting for this to kick in to balance out the mournful realization of getting older. I've been waiting for that lovely sense of self, of confidence, of 'take me as I am or hit the road jack cause life's too short' to come rolling in. When I run across mean salesgirls/rude waitstaff/unhelpful people in general, I want my first reaction to be HOW DARE THEY instead of that yucky 'please god let me avoid an ugly confrontation' feeling. My mother swears it happens at 50. I'm hoping for sooner. :-)

Susan Seyfarth said...

Oh, brownone, I'm right there with you!! My oldest just turned five & my youngest is eighteen months & we're leaving behind babyhood so fast! I keep saying to my husband, "One more. I think just one more baby & I'll be done." And he says, "I don't think we've had enough sleep to make that decision." And I keep thinking, what if we're done?? what if this stage of our lives is behind us? I'm not ready!! WAAAAHH!

Claudia Dain said...

I remember the moment exactly. I was at the mall with my kids, all still shorter than I am at that point (important detail as now they're all quite a bit taller), and was about to cross from the parking side to the mall entrance side when my son put out his arm to throw across my chest to stop me from walking into an oncoming car.

This little kid, this *child* was making sure Mommy did not get run over by a car going 5 MPH.

I was officially old from that point on.

Susan Seyfarth said...

Oh, Christie. Our songs on the oldies station. Yep. Happens to me all the time. I don't even know what the 'hot' radio stations are any more. Do kids even listen to radio these days, or do they just stream music from wherever?

Gannon Carr said...

Susan, thanks for the laugh! If I ever wear the same undies as my mom, I'll probably never get over it! *grin*

I just turned 42 in March, and most of the time I think I'm younger than that. In many ways, my three children keep me young (except for the wrinkles, gray hair, and stretch marks!). All of my kids know who Ferris Bueller is! In fact, I use the "Anyone? Bueller?" quote quite a bit when my kids are not listening. I love that movie!

I figure that laughing keeps me young. And in our house, there is always something to make me chuckle.

Susan Seyfarth said...

Beth--the ma'am thing is very, very sneaky. See, I lived in Texas for a few years, at which point I got used to calling everybody older than I am ma'am or sir, & having everybody younger than I am refer to me the same way. And for the record, I was 22 when I lived there. But I've recently realized that the people who are ma'aming me are no spring chickens themselves.

THIS is what concerns me. These over-eager ma'amers trying to make me feel old. The nerve! Because I do not feel a day older, thirty five? Ahem.

Susan Seyfarth said...

Oh, PJ, thanks for such a wonderful & inspiring point of view! I feel really whiny about the age thing sometimes--mostly, as you said, when wearing swimsuits or my mothers underwear--but for the most part, I'm with you. Every single year of my life starting with about twenty two has gotten better & better. I don't long for my twenties. And god, you couldn't PAY me to relive my teen years. Urgh. So yeah. I'm lucky. And I recognize that. But I can't help giving my kids the stink eye when I see those wrinkles on my forearm. :-)

Susan Seyfarth said...

PJ--re: the discovery of my mothers & my matching unders--yes, it was a terrible & shocking event. I don't recommend it. :-)

Susan Seyfarth said...

Terry--I may just be undercultured, but I'm going to admit it. I don't know what Group W Bench is. *cringe* Share?

Susan Seyfarth said...

Claudia--I loved this story. My kids are 5 & 1.5 right now & I spend my days in a constant state of near-panic now that it's summer & they're both trying to get themselves killed via oncoming cars, scooters, bikes, roller skates, etc. To have one of them take care of me for a minute? I think I would dissolve into a puddle of tears.

Claudia Dain said...

Susan, really, truly it's hard to fall behind and not stay hip when your kids are pushing you into whatever new thing is out there. It's especially great with daughters. They just will not let Mom be a hag! I've told my daughter repeatedly, and she listens passionately, "If I have a stroke or am in a coma, PLUCK MY EYEBROWS AND GET MY HAIR COLORED AND CUT!"

I'll know she'll make sure I look my best while I'm slowly wasting away. This comforts me.

Susan Seyfarth said...

Gannon--thanks for the reassurance about older kids keeping us young! I've been banking on this, as my children are the reason I'm feeling so old right now, but they're little. One day, they're going to introduce me to the coolest music, the hippest clothes, the current slang. And I think I can guarantee that my daughters will not be wearing my underwear. :-)

Susan Seyfarth said...

Claudia--this is GREAT information. I just turned to my five year old & said, "If mommy ever gets hit by a bus..." then stopped myself. She's not ready yet. But I am tucking that info away. It won't be long & I'm all for disaster preparedness. :-)

Terry Odell said...

Susan, you can't call yourself old if you don't know what the Group W Bench is. Of course, my kids were brought up right and they know it, but years ago, I took a long-term temp job at Universal Studios and I was working for children. I used to mention the Group W Bench to see if we had any common ground. There were a few old-timers who caught the reference, and we got along fine.

I'll tell -- but not YET. Let's let others have a chance to admit to their age first.

jo robertson said...

Susan, what a wonderful and hilarious post! Ah, the moment of truth when we look in the mirror and . . . arrrggghhhh!

My example of aging relates to language and is a little outdated. When I taught All Quiet on the Western Front to my sophomores, we got into the whole concept of soldiers, war, and trauma and how war and soldiering have changed over the years.

In passing I mentioned "hootch" in reference to a thatched hut in Vietnam and everyone started snickering.

Of course, we then had the discussion of hootch as moonshine, but the kids couldn't get over my reference to "hootchie mama."

Claudia Dain said...

Susan, right now, today, start listening to the current music, Top 40 stuff, country. Your kids will always think you're cool if you're up on the latest songs. My kids actually beam with joy and pride that I like the same music they do.

It's a little thing, but to them it's significant.

Claudia Dain said...

You gotta know that a blog about aging would capture me completely. I may hover here all day!

Kirsten said...

Susan, I love reading your blogs and hearing your voice in my head. Gah! You are so d#$m funny! :-)

I have a good strategy for dealing with the aging problem: don't be cool when you're young. Don't be good looking, either. Starting from this very low baseline, you then set about to getting BETTER looking and COOLER as you age.

I have tried this. I was definitely not cool or hot when I was young. I am marginally better-looking now than I was ten years ago. Comes with having a lot more confidence about myself and my body than I did then.

I am also marginally cooler. I haven't changed, but the same behaviors that were uncool as a teenager aren't as noticeable as an adult. And I'm getting a book published. Nothing cooler than that.

That said, I do have this loose skin under my neck that I'm not at all comfortable with, and my husband had one of those milestone birthdays on May 1 that freaked me out. He's five years older than I am, but it doesn't matter. If you're married to an old guy, it's hard to maintain your youth.

Terry Odell said...

With apologies to the group -- I had to 'borrow' the theme for my blog today. I guess I'm getting too old to come up with new ideas all the time.

Kirsten said...

Oh, and the underwear thing--my mom wears those ones that go up to your waist (I know this, because she leaves them at my house whenever she comes to visit). I hate those undies. They always bunch up over the top of my pants. I wear the hipsters. Big difference.

So I'm safe from that one. ;-)

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey Susan! I'm still laughing at the mom undies!

I realized I was old one night when I helped a patient out of bed and told her to walk like Tim Conway doing the old man on The Carol Burnett Show. She had no idea what I was talking about!!

I'm reminded nightly that I'm old when the young nurses talk about shows and actors I have no idea who they are.

And I really knew I was old, when I watched Napleon Dynamite with my kids a few years back and really didn't get it. Picture me with my eye brows furrowed and my head cocked sideways like that would make it make more sense!! Sigh, yes, OLD.

Claudia Dain said...

Suzanne, this happens to me all the time. I watch the awards shows on TV and have no idea who 3/4 of the people are on the red carpet. As I watch quite a bit of TV and see lots of movies, this is *very* disturbing. I guess with 500 channels, you're bound to miss a few thousand actors.

Susan, have you thought of buying your mom a new brand of underwear? That way you could keep yours, but hers would be different. And that's all that really matters, right? My daughter is totally safe because I am never going to wear thong underwear. What is it with these kids today? *G*

Nancy said...

Susan--LOL! What a hoot this post is! ("Hoot" is probably a way old-fashioned word *sigh*) The age thing hit me when I was walking down a street, window-shopping, saw a reflection in a window, and thought, "Who is that middle-aged woman?" And it was ME! Aack!

Speaking of Matthew Broderick, I remember the computers from WarGames. Which are hopelessly clunky and old-fashioned now. The movies I show in my SFF class are unknown to the students. Terminator. The Abyss. Great movies in their day. "In their day." My mother used to say "back in the day." Double-ack!

What really ripped me about aging was when a store clerk who was probably in her teens called me "honey." No way, baby-cakes. It's "ma'am" to her. And should have been, no matter my age. And it suddenly became "ma'am" when I casually mentioned my former pinstripe-suit professional job.

Terry, all my students (college age) look like babies to me. I remember when UCLA ruled basketball. Heck, I remember when Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was Lew Alcindor!

Carol, I'm sorry you've lost so many friends. That would certainly be tough. As you point out, it does underscore the fact that aging beats the alternative.

I worked on the radio station in college. I knew how to put together the whole rig for recording our campus news, and I could run the sound board. I had an FCC 3rd class radio operator's license. Hooking up a stereo system, DVD player, etc., is no problem. But making my scanner, digital camcorder, or digital camera interface with the computer intimidates me. I know how to plug them in, of course. I'm just worried something will go "blzzlphht!" if I do. How the did that happen?

Terry Odell said...

Nancy -- yep, that's how I remember "Kareem", and I remember Keith Wilkes, not Jamaal when he was introduced at a halftime ceremony at the game I attended with my son. I recall walking across campus one day and Alcindor was walking the other direction. I stared him in the belt buckle. (And his daughter was at UCLA the same time my son was).

I did have one of those "yes!" moments when I mentioned a full court press defense, and my son looked at me, wide-eyed, and said, "Mom knows basketball?"

p226 said...

That moment came for me when I was listening to a classic rock station. And a tune from the 5150 tour came on.

"This is 'classic' now? Wasn't it like, yesterday when I was getting hammered to this and trying to get in Kristen whassername's pants at that keg party?"

*mental math*


Anna Sugden said...

OMG Susan - I'm glad I'd finished my tea (English Breakfast), because that was such a funny post. It had me nodding with agreement (except for the Baby's bum wrinkles!).

I don't feel any older, though I know I am. My hair has multi-coloured streaks to hide the grey and I'm actually considering anti-wrinkle cream because my skin is getting drier.

I had one of those aged moments the other day when I walked into the local pharmacy and they were playing the Sex Pistols' 'Anarchy in the UK'. That was my era. Siouxsie Sioux was my hero. I've been to Steve Strange's shop. Since when did it become acceptable to play the Sex Pistols?!

Brat Pack movies are a huge part of my cultural reference. I can't stand that Ducky from Pretty in Pink has grown up. On the other hadn, the geek from The Breakfast Club has grown up very nicely! I even bought the book "Looking for Andrew McCarthy", because the whole concept appealed to me (though I'd have been looking for Judd Nelson - what a sexy bad boy he was!)

Jo - I know what you mean. When I taught, I used to read 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory' to my seven year olds. We then had to spend a whole lesson understanding the time in which Charlie was written. No, children didn't have cell phones, or DVD players in their rooms ... and computers?!

petite said...

I do feel that this past year has definitely contributed to the feeling of being old. Turning a certain age and then have two married sons has made it more than evident.Listening the the music of the 50's as well as the only appealing type is another thing too.

limecello said...

LOL the funny thing is... I feel old but I'm really young :X -how scary is that?

MsHellion said...

I got old when I purposely started going to matinee movies for this reason:

1.) They're cheaper
2.) They're at a time when I'm still awake
3.) No KIDS

#3 is most important, but you can probably avoid the kiddies if you go to a 9-10 pm show, but I can't stay up that late. Unless it's for Harry Potter or a POTC midnight showing. You gotta have priorities.

Anna Campbell said...

Tawny, congrats on the GR!!!!

Susan, your posts always make me laugh. Especially the underwear bit!

Dianna, is that the first time we've seen your photo? Cool!

My dividing line was when people stopped calling me 'miss' and started calling me 'ma'am'. Or stopped calling me a girl and started calling me a lady (which is a huge exaggeration, by the way). And it seemed to happen overnight! Whaaaahhhh!

Anna Campbell said...

Terry, laughed at the basketball and 'my age' comment. Ain't it the truth? I remember when every boy I had a crush on on TV or in a movie was older than me. These days, most of them are younger than me. Someone sent me a Utube of some hot new Italian band yesterday. The boys looked about 12. I swear they did!

Carol, apart from a bit of creaking, I like getting older too. I KNOW so much more now than I did! Sorry to hear about your losses.

Anna Campbell said...

What's the Group W bench? Maybe it's a US thing.

Actually, on the shoe research thing, you can do it if you write Harlequin Presents. Annie West and I often go window shopping for 'mistress' clothes. It's nice to live the fantasy for a little while ;-)

Anna Campbell said...

Terry, cool blog leading on from this one. If anyone wants to check it out, this is the addy:

Terry Odell said...

Thanks, Anna -
I hope some of you will pop over. I'll answer the Group W Bench question either later tonight or tomorrow. My husband graciously shared his cold and I'm rather thick-headed today.

Hint: It's a music reference.

Anna Sugden said...

Oh Anna - I can see that going down well with my hubby - just off to do some research on mistress shoes! LOL.

Jennifer Y. said...

Okay, #3 cracked me up! Mostly because of a discussion I had with my nephew about how we didn't always have internet, cell phones, etc. The 8-year-old called me old a while back (I am 25) when we were talking about things and he about had a coronary when I told him we didn't have DVDs when I was little.

I told him that I had some movie on tape and he asked why I didn't have the DVD. I said, we didn't have DVDs when the movie came out. I had my back to him and he had gotten really quiet. I turned to look at him and he is sitting there with his mouth hanging open.

He was really in for a surprise when he learned that color tv, cable, and even VCRs didn't always exist. And I don't think the kid has ever even seen a record...he'd probably think they were frisbees.

He also doesn't get my jokes or pop culture references...neither does my 16-year-old cousin.

And a few years back some of my cousins found my dad's 8-tracks and said, "Cool! Video games!" They had no clue what they were.

As for crushes...I remember having crushes on actors and singers growing up and seeing them now, I am like "Whoa!" My sis and I were reminiscing about the New Kids on the Block the other day. I didn't have a crush on any of them, but she did. LOL And I recently felt a little uncomfortable when I thought some singers were cute and I realized they were underage...LOL.

Helen said...

Susan Mum used to get them at the major stores here in Australia I have not seen them for a long time but she always said she was built for comfort not glamour everyone in the family used to tease her about them. She had a good sense of humour and laughed with us.

Have Fun

Jennifer Y. said...

Oh, and even I have heard of Bueller and I am in my mid-twenties...reruns people, reruns ;o)

I'll admit that most of my pop culture knowledge comes from watching reruns of shows that were on before I was born. And I love VH1's series, "I love the 80s" "I love the 90s," etc.

It's amazing though how many pop culture references there are that many young people don't know about...Who shot JR?, "Marcia Marcia Marcia", ALF, "They're He-e-re," "E.T. Phone Home" etc.

And to think that to many Patrick Dempsey is that guy on Grey's Anatomy rather than the cute actor from 80s movies like "Lover Boy" and "Can't Buy Me Love"

Anthony Michael Hall is the guy on the Dead Zone rather than the geeky kid from "The Breakfast Club"

Jon Cryer is the guy from that show with Charlie Sheen rather than Duckie.

Scott Baio is no longer "Charles in Charge"

And The Brat Pack has been replaced by Bratz Dolls.


I could go on...LOL

terrio said...

I'm am sooooooooooooo with you. As of my last birthday, seniors in HS are half my age. My little brother who was born when I was 17 is now in college. Forty is getting uncomfortably close and my 8 yr old is under the impression we were still riding around in the horse and buggy when I was her age.

I too ask myself when did this happen? How did this happen? I mean, I still start half my sentences with the word "dude". LOL!


Susan Seyfarth said...

Hi, everybody--

Sorry I've been so absent from the blog today. I drove from the North Shore of Lake Superior back to the Twin Cities, & while I was hoping for a quick couple hours, the other people in my car had other idea. Thus, an entire DAY later, here I am again.

So forgive me. I'm going to try to catch up. Here goes...

Susan Seyfarth said...

Oh, Jo. Hootchie. And of course your students just DIED laughing, didn't they? I student taught ninth grade English & had the students in unintentional stitches many, many times. *heavy sigh*

Rotten kids. :-)

Susan Seyfarth said...

Kirsten! Aww, aren't you sweet? And I think that's awesome advice about being an uncool kid. It helps that I was totally an uncool kid, so it's an easy fix for me. :-) And I have to say, my DH is 3.5 years older than I am, so it's not a significant gap, but it's always been really nice to be the 'young' one in our marriage. :-) No matter how old I get, he'll be older. And I like that.

Pat Cochran said...

Hello, All,

Dear Susan.............
Dear, Dear Susan............
What was the question????????????

I reached that point such a long
time ago that I can't even remember
reaching it! Although, there was a
moment a year ago. My son was over
and was watching The Dead Zone. He
said something about Anthony Michael Hall being the lead actor.
I said, "You mean the little boy from that Pink movie?" My son just
about died laughing when I noted
that "he grew up well, when did
that happen?"

Pat Cochran

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

But even then, some small, mean part of my brain registered that it was fun to get a free pass on hitting her. :-)
I had no idea you were one of the rotten ones Susan, how did I miss that? EG

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

Dianna, is that the first time we've seen your photo? Cool!

Anna, that was when I was a sweet young thing, in honor of the high school blog. Trust me, it has been many, many, many years since I looked anywhere near that good.

peggy said...

for me it was when i went to bed and my son was in first grade
when i woke up he was going to the prom.watching nick at night for a
good tv thats a slap in the face.

Natalie Hatch said...

Totally relate to this, this is my life. As a high school teacher I would stand in front of the class cracking myself up with different references from movies that were 'hip' unfortunately my kids would just look at me like I was from Mars. Oh well, hubby gets me. But I have started indoctrinating my teens by showing them Ferris Bueller and Sixteen Candles... so at least at home I'll get some respect. (yeah right!)

flchen1 said...

OMG! Susan, I'm with Christine--I don't know about my mother's undergarments and don't really want to, but I TOTALLY get the rest of it. Sigh... and seriously, I noticed my permanently wrinkled forearm a few years ago and was initially bewildered--I mean, NO ONE tells you about this, anywhere!

Anyway, we summer chickens have to stick together, right? :) Bueller??

Jennifer Y. said...

Oh, and I have something else that I just noticed...we have a "classic" tv show channel on our OnDemand and "Party of Five" is one of the options...since when is a show from the 90s a classic?

And even though I am still relatively young, I have noticed myself telling my nephews and nieces things that start with "When I was a kid..." Something that until now, I had only heard from my parents and grandparents.

doglady said...

Susan you are too cute to be old! The underwear twins made me laugh until my sides hurt. Too funny. I knew I had crossed over when I heard snap crackle pop and I hadn't gotten completely out of bed yet. I will be 50 in December and I don't care what anyone says, 50 is not the NEW anything!

Of course my two younger brothers, serious stuffy guys that they are don't think I am grown up at all. They are constantly looking at some of the things I do and say "Why don't you grow up." Frankly I have seen little to recommend it.

However there are always those friendly little syndromes to remind you of your age. I already talked about "cereal syndrome." Then there is the "furniture syndrome" - your chest is in your drawers.

Then there is CRS (can't remember squat - insert your own term here) That is what happens before Alzheimer's so it isn't such a shock.

Then again, growing old beats the heck out of the alternative. I get up every morning, read the obituaries, and if I am not in them, I go to work! Some days I even remember to get dressed!

The big news? I got a call from Stephi with RWA and one of the final judges requested the full of LOST IN LOVE! EEEEEEK!

Joan said...

Susan I have 4 words for you:

Victoria's Secret Gift Card.

Seriously, just veer away from the micro mini thong table.

As to "crossing over"? Did you read my Birthday blog in April? I had to FREAKIN GO TO ANOTHER COUNTRY just to cope!

And I CLING to the mantra that 50 IS the new 30 and adamantly BURNED that (*&&^^(@ AARP card they had the AUDACITY to send me!!!!!!

And word for you...
WOOOOHOOOOOOOOOO on the request!

Caren Crane said...

Susan, you're killing me! But first, Tawny, congrats on nabbing the chook!

I love that your husband said you haven't had enough sleep to make a decision about having another child. He's right! Then again, once you get through diapers the SECOND TIME, it's hard to go back and do that again. I was glad we had #2 and #3 18 months apart. I didn't have time to think about it. Otherwise, there may never have been a #3! Now that they're 13-1/2 and 15, it's easier.

I had a big "I'm old" moment when my third was in around third grade. When my son (now 22) was in school, I was always the young mom. With #2 and #3, I was the average-age mom. Then, around third grade with #3, I realized the moms had gotten REALLY young. Like, young like I was when The Boy was in elementary school. It didn't help that said Boy was then a junior in high school. Ack!

Yes, old catches you by surprise every time. One day you're strolling along, minding your own business, young as always. The next - BAM! - crows feet, a gray hair and lines on your CHEST. It's horrific. Thank God for hair dye.

Caren Crane said...

Doglady, congratulations on the request. That is awesome news!!

Susan Seyfarth said...


I get that kids are watching different shows these days, but there's really no excuse for not being familiar with the Carol Burnett Show! I mean, come on! The curtain rod Scarlett O'hara thing? That's classic comedy!

I have to admit, I did think Napoleon Dynamite was funny. But it had to grow on me. I spent the first viewing with the furrowed brow, too. But my husband (who has a genius about these things) insisted I watch it again. It got funnier. I think.

Susan Seyfarth said...

Claudia said: I'm never going to wear a thong. What is it with kids these day??

To that, I say AMEN SISTER. I have tried the thong route & am NEVER going back. Life is too short for butt floss.

Susan Seyfarth said...

Nancy, your post cracked me up! I have to say, I don't think hoot is as old fashioned as yoo hoo, though. My mom & her sisters are big yoo hoo ers. You know, we'll be in a giant crowd & instead of whipping out her cell phone (which she has & is quite proficient with) to reach my dad on the other side of the crowd, she'll stand up on the highest possible point & shriek YOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOO!! while waving her arms & encouraging me to do the same. And I don't know how she manages this but yoohoo has its own register which can cut through any sort of background noise. It stops people dead in their tracks for yards around. Probably to think, "Yoo hoo? Who says that anymore?"

Susan Seyfarth said...

P226--Oldies radio will break your heart. Stop listening. Just kiss the soundtrack to your youth goodbye...

Susan Seyfarth said...

Anna! A fellow John Hughes afficianado!! I loved all his movies from the Breakfast Club to Pretty in Pink to Some Kind of Wonderful...

I, too, hate that Ducky is now playing second fiddle to Charlie Sheen on a horrible, laugh-tracked sitcom. But I suppose I don't begrudge him the financial security. A guy like Ducky ought to be rolling in it. :-)

And I have to agree that it's hard to explain to kids today about our unplugged youth. No microwaves or cell phones. No computers, no video games. Heck, I thought we were wildy high tech when we got our first VCR & it came with a remote control. Granted, it was attached to the VCR with a cord, but still. Remote controls? Wowee wow wow.

Susan Seyfarth said...

petite--what IS it about those milestone birthdays?? How do they manage to pack such a punch? I finally had to admit last year that my early thirties were done. I was firmly in the middle, & barrelling toward forty & it was a difficult thing to swallow. I can't imagine how the actual 40th is going to hit me...

Susan Seyfarth said...

limoncello--That IS a strange one. Feeling old while actually young. Hmmmm. Well, only one thing to do. Start hanging around with REALLY old people. Like me, for example. :-) You'll start feeling like a spring chicken in no time.

Susan Seyfarth said...

mshellion--A matinee on a rainy weekday afternoon is one of the sweetest luxuries life has to offer, to my way of thinking. Throw in a deserted theatre, a giant bag of popcorn, unlimited diet coke & I'm about as happy as I get without books or ice cream involved. :-)

My husband & I tried to have late dates for a while. YOu know, get a sitter after the kids are in bed & sneak out for a ten o'clock show. Most expensive naps we ever took. We stopped that foolishness pronto. Now we put a movie in the DVD player & sleep on the couch like the respectable (& budget minded) old folks we are.

Donna MacMeans said...

Hi Susan -

I suddenly realized I hadn't checked the blog today so dashed over - my loss - I was laughing my head off. Great Post!!!

I think my moment came when my dh and I were to go to a June dinner party. The theme was weddings and the hostess asked that we wear our old wedding dresses. She even suggested we have them altered - like I'd pay money for that LOL - but I tried my on just to see how much had changed since I married. I wasn't surprised that the zipper wouldn't come close to meeting, but what truly surprized me was my boobs were no longer in the same place. This dress had darts for these high perky boobs and mine were down about three inches.

I shudder to think where they'd hit now *g*.

Susan Seyfarth said...

Anna C.--yeah, it's demoralizing to realize that all the movie stars you're crushing on are waaaaay younger than you are. I have a minor crush on Shia Lebeouf that dates back to his Transformer days. The kid is barely twenty-one. It's embarassing.

Another one is olympic athletes. I know they're getting younger & younger, but time way I could watch the olympics & think, "there's still time. I could still capitalize on my athletic potential." Now? Ha. I had to pack up my gold medal dreams a loooooong time ago.

Susan Seyfarth said...

Jennifer Y (and all you other NKOTB fans from way back)--Exciting news! New Kids on the Block is staging a come back!! Yes indeedy, I have it straight from Perez Hilton who tells us that their debut single is not doing well but that their rabid fans (now middle aged women like us) are snapping up concert tickets like mad. Do not let this chance to relive your youth pass you by! I have already emailed by little sister (who was the hugest fan) to needle her about dusting off her dance moves. (I believe she memorized the video to The Right Stuff & could bust a move with the best of them.)

Susan Seyfarth said...

Jennifer Y--just to prove that I'm older than you, I'll do you one better. Scott Baio wasn't alway Charles in Charge. In my heart he'll always be Chachi. :-)

Jennifer Y. said...

--Exciting news! New Kids on the Block is staging a come back!!

That's exactly why my sis and I were talking about it...LOL I was teasing her over her 80s hair and the different phases she went through.

For a while, neon tiedye and neon jewelry was her fave things to wear.

Susan Seyfarth said...

Terrio--thank you for admitting to overusing the word Dude. I, too, am a dude abuser. It's just so...flexible. Have you ever heard the comedian (can't remember who because I'm OLD) do the routine about how you give Dude any meaning you want based solely on inflection? It's pretty funny.

Jennifer Y. said...

Jennifer Y--just to prove that I'm older than you, I'll do you one better. Scott Baio wasn't alway Charles in Charge. In my heart he'll always be Chachi.

Ahh...yes...and now he is known as the guy on VH1...LOL

Ralph Macchio (The Karate Kid) was another of my crushes...wonder where he is now.

Susan Seyfarth said...

Pat Cochran--I don't know about you, but I kinda prefer the skinny, geeky Anthony Michael Hall to the huge, strapping dude he became. By Edward Scissor Hands, he was practically unrecognizable. So sad. And by the Dead Zone, he was launching a career renaissance because nobody recognized him anymore. Poor kid. Geeky was cool, Anthony! We loved you geeky! Geek back up!

Susan Seyfarth said...

Oh dianna, I am absolutely one of the rotten ones!! I just have a very innocent face that totally works to my advantage. Just ask my sister... :-)

Susan Seyfarth said...

Peggy--yep. They grow up THAT fast. And you're right. Nick at Night is practically the only place to find quality TV sometimes. Ack.

Susan Seyfarth said...

flchen1--You have a wrinkled forearm too? Oh thank god. Nobody was fessing up to this & I was starting to think I was crazy! Geez, the things nobody tells you about motherhood. The rest of the stuff I wish somebody'd told me could fill a book. I have a sister & a good friend who are both pregnant for the first time & I'm so tempting to tell them everything, but I think it might be meanspirited not to just let them enjoy this first go round. There'll be time for the rest of it later, right?

Susan Seyfarth said...

Doglady--HUGE CONGRATS on the request!! That's such excellent news! Keep us posted!

And I died laughing at the furniture syndrome. Chest in drawers. heheheheh. If I had any chest to speak of, it would certainly be in my drawers after nursing the kids all these years. Small (and I do mean small) mercies, huh? :-)

Susan Seyfarth said...

Joan--I loved your birthday trip. I'm looking forward to my next milestone birthday because of it. I have my argument all planned out. "But honey, Joanie from the Romance Bandits said going to Ireland is the ONLY way to cope with this!" I'm sure it'll do the trick, but I may send DH to you if he has any questions about why he needs to take me overseas when I turn...ahem...the next big number. :-)

Susan Seyfarth said...

Caren--this is sage advice about stacking up #2 & #3. I think if we're going to ante up for a third, it'll have to be a sleep-deprived mistake, if you know what I mean. :-) Such mistakes have been known to happen.

And yes, mothers are getting very, very young these days. New moms are joining our stay at home moms club & I'm astonished. They're babies themselves! I mean, for goodness sakes. Imagine having a baby in your twenties! (I started at thirty myself & found it very civilized.) Then I turned 35 & suddenly my OB shifted out of 'let's have us some babies' gear & into "have you scheduled your mammogram?" gear. It was disorienting. :-)

Susan Seyfarth said...

Donna, your discovery about your boobs' great southern migration cracked me up. If I had any boobs to speak of I'm sure they'd have flown south, too. My bum is about to say hello to the backs of my knees, though. Does that count? :-)

Pat Cochran said...

Susan, When I made my comment about Anthony Michael Hall, I was looking at his face, not the rest of him!
As bulked up as he is, if he were
green, he'd look like the Hulk!

Pat Cochran

jo robertson said...

I meant to come back way before now, Susan, but it looks like the party's been going, as they say, hardily (aka heartily).

I just wanted to add that the BEST -- flatout absolutely best decade of my life (and there have been many) were the years between mid-thirties to late thirties and mid to late forties. Kids gone, career blooming, tubes tied (uh, maybe that was just me -- hee hee) and I really understood for the first time who I was and what I wanted from life.

Enjoy it!

Oh, but I NEVER, EVER wore my mum's panties. Uh, gotta remedy that one, girl!

Donna MacMeans said...

Forgot to say -

"You can get anything you want at Alice's Restaurant..."

Lord, I'm old *g*

Terry Odell said...

Yay for Donna! Yep, good old Arlo. We play that every Thanksgiving.

And re: The Carol Burnett Show -- Harvey Korman died. How sad.

Terry Odell said...

In case anyone else is curious, I've posted the answer to the Group W bench in the comments on my blog on Thursday's post.

flchen1 said...

Susan, you can't know how relieved I was to read your post yesterday--I don't actually know too many other moms who've 'fessed up to the forearm wrinkling... *gah* maybe we're just weird? ;)

Congrats to your sister and friend! As for how much to tell them, it seems to be a fine line--you don't want them to be caught off guard, but at the same time, you don't want to terrorize them. And honestly, a lot of it doesn't make sense until you're in the middle of it. And then you just want someone to listen and shriek, "Yes! That's EXACTLY it!" sympathetically. So maybe give them some of the good stuff, but maybe you can really just save some of it up for the times when you're going to pop in to surprise them with take-out in hand, take the baby out of their exhausted arms, and send them off for a nap...

Anyway, thanks again for this--it's such a load off my mind to be in such esteemed company! (And uh, yes, if I had any chest to speak of, I could certainly use a lift... ;))