When 40 years old is preferable to 23

8 Jun

This is the first post is a series I’m starting called Project: 50 Questions, based on the list at Marc and Angel Hack Life. I’m doing this not to take a deeper look into me — I feel I know me pretty well, maybe these questions will prove me wrong — but to take Snap, Crackle, Pop into a slightly more thoughtful (and probably long-winded, you have my apologies in advance) direction. Enjoy!

How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are?

Under my “about me” section on Facebook, I’ve had the following line posted for nearly a year: I’m an old soul with a young spirit.

Old: I met my beau at a party that eventually dwindled down to six couples — the host and hostess, two friends who are married, me and this sexy bald guy I’d been eyeing for, oh, an hour. At one point, the conversation turned to my age. I was 26, and one of the women there, who was just months shy of her fortieth birthday, told me she couldn’t believe I was still in my twenties, that I had an “old soul” aspect to me, that I was mature for my age. It was the way I conversed, she said, the way I carried myself and a general vibe I gave out.

The sexy bald guy kept nodding his agreement through this. I later found out — once sexy bald guy became sexy bald beau — that he was thinking that, at 36, he was too old for me. But he felt that he related to me well, and that I was not what he thought a 26-year-old should be. (From what I gather, he equated “26” with “college sophomore.” I’m unsure why.)

Young: Meanwhile, the first time the beau came over, I freaked out because, well, what would this grown-ass man think of my apartment, which had more than its share of Donald Ducks everywhere? He and I met days before Christmas, and the first time he came over, I still had my decorations up — including a three-foot tall stuffed greeter Donald at my door.

“HIDE THAT,” demanded the friend who threw the party.

So into the closet went three-foot tall Donald. Into the closet went the myriad Christmas-themed stuffed Donalds lounging in the papasan chair. I left the Donald ornaments on the tree because, well, even a grown-ass man could not deny their awesomeness.

What? I like the duck!

But I didn’t think about one thing: What would happened when the beau had to pee? This is what happened: He got up. He went to the bathroom. He peed. He came back out. He said, “So, you like ducks?”

Yeah, my bathroom? Full of rubber ducks. They’re on the shower curtain and the little hooks that keep the curtain on the rod. They’re on the toothbrush holder and the toilet brush holder. There’s a duck-head rug, and no fewer than four framed rubber duck photos. A few watch you while you pee. There’s a framed Donald from an antique store that admonishes, “Wash your hands!”

Oh. Yeah. I like ducks.

A weird old/young mixture: I also like crafts, and some of them are pretty old-lady of me. One summer in college, I lived with some roommates while I worked on the summer edition of the student newspaper. One Saturday, I got home from a walk, and one of my roommates — a drop-dead gorgeous cheerleader — had a friend over. I had no idea if this was a boyfriend or a friend who was a boy, so I made myself scarce and went upstairs.

It was like 8 p.m., but I put on my pjs, turned on the radio, and started to cross stitch. After about 20 minutes, I heard a lot of voices downstairs. Clearly, there were more people over. I started to worry that someone would come up, open the closed door, and find 20-year-old me on a Saturday night cross stitching an angel for her grandma while wearing pajamas that probably had monkeys all over them.

What? Monkeys aren't sexy?

And then … a thud up the stairs … and then a knock … and then a head pops in the room.

Oh, hello most gorgeous guy to ever exist from the Kent State basketball team. It’s nice to meet you. It’s called cross stitching. My grandma’s birthday is coming up, and I’m making it for her. Oh, thank you, I’m glad you like it. OK, have a good night.

Young: I also dance like a maniac. Forget “Dance like nobody’s watching.” I dance in the middle of a crowded restaurant, when my food is set in front of me, and I’m anticipating how delicious it’s going to taste. My shoulders start to bob up and down, sort of in time to Hall & Oates’s “I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do).”

So you ask how old I am? I think I’m part 6-year-old curiosity and wonder and brat and part 40-year-old mature and thoughtful and secure. Which, if you average it out, makes me 23. And there ain’t no way in hell I’d want to be 23 again. So let’s say I’m 40.

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3 Responses to “When 40 years old is preferable to 23”

  1. Suburban Sweetheart June 9, 2011 at 10:41 am #

    I love this. You are as old as you feel – some days that might be 6, some days 40. I think I usually feel pretty close to 26 – I’ve always wanted to be called an “old soul,” but I don’t think it’s ever gonna happen. :/

  2. Meghan June 9, 2011 at 1:02 pm #

    “So let’s say I’m 40.” Haha! Love it.

  3. Ally June 9, 2011 at 7:36 pm #

    Honestly? If I could stay 40 forever, I would. Truly.

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