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3:15 p.m. - 2013-01-18
On The Edge of 50

As the Brady Kids sang, "It's a sunshine day...everybody's smiling." Okay, maybe I'm the only one smiling but I'm alone in the house right now thus I'm 'everybody'. Ergo- everybody's smiling.

Ooo...The Brady Bunch and Zen and semantics! How does she do it?

The answer used to be drugs, but since I'm Ms Boring Clean Life now I guess it's time to simply admit I'm a loon with a messy mind and a sick fondness for the sit-coms of my youth. But you guys knew this already.

It's the start of my birthday weekend. The official day is Monday, but since I have to share it with MLK and the Prez I've declared the entire weekend as mine. 'LA is 50 and homage will be paid'.

The other day at dinner I said something about being 50 and Wolf pointed out that I was only 49. I smacked my forehead and said, "Shit! That's right! I'm still in my 40s! Cool! I still have time to get something pierced."

For real. I thought about it. One last act of dopey youthful rebellion. But upon further reflection I realized I didn't own anything I wanted a new hole in so I'm letting the opportunity pass. The same goes for getting a tattoo. As for the other clichéd stuff, been there, done that. Dating a musician? There was My Own Private Bon Jovi. Younger lover? Yup. Many of you remember Dish. Red sports car with a jet engine? Yup. Addiction? Still wrestling with that one, but at least nicotine is legal. No having to go to a seedy part of town to score some Virginia Slims. Though when I was using fulltime I had Mick buy them for me in PA so as to skip the hefty $4.00 per pack sin tax the state of NY sees fit to zap the tobacco junkies with. Anyone who's been to Matamoras knows it's no garden spot so I guess I've sent my guy over state lines to buy my stogies in a seedy part of a seedy town. Go me for involving an innocent in my sleazy drug use! Let's see, what else? Well I dropped out of school to follow my heart. All right fine. I dropped out of college to put the ex through college, then got knocked up and eventually put him through college, got knocked up again and have spent the last 16 years being the hands-on mom of a special needs child and no doubt will spend the early part of my Golden Years putting him through some kind of post-high school training. (Right now he's thinking the CIA.) Maybe on my 70th birthday I'll go back to college and get my own degree. It could happen.

So if dopey youthful mistakes and missteps are behind me what do I want in my wise middle age? Not a hella lot more than what I have right now. I have a loyal, sexy, attentive and adoring husband who sees to it I am kept in sparklies and chocolate-covered pretzels. I love my house and the few improvements and repairs it needs are on the 5 year plan already. Never did get a purse puppy but Princess is such a wonderful dog I wouldn't trade her for a dozen long-haired Yorkies. Now that I have my pointy hair back my biggest issue with my 'look' is settled. I do think about a facelift sometimes, but even with baggy eyelids and this awful pelican chin my face doesn't send small children screaming and my husband still likes to kiss me A LOT, so I'm good. Aside from my younger son there's no blood kin for me to deal with. No elderly parents to agonize over having to put them in a home. No wastrel brothers to bail out. No drama queen sisters needing a home for her and her rainbow coalition of raggedy children after her 7th divorce. There's still Mick's parents to deal with, but they're his parents, my role is that of having his back and being a reasonably dutiful DIL.

I'd like to travel, but Mick's loathing of the TSA has pretty much quashed air travel. Plus Wolf still isn't old enough to leave on his own and it's for damnsure I'm not taking a sullen teenager to Vegas or Prague with me. So. Travel is still out for some time to come. I assume eventually Mick and I will get around to taking a cruise out of Bayonne or we'll drive down to Disney. I like Disney. As it is NYC is practically in our backyard and we don't take advantage of that nearly enough. More bites from the Big Apple would be good and plenty doable.

Back to the birthday festivities.

Today we're going to Sam's Club to pick up my meds and I'm going to splurge and get a hot dog from the snack bar. I like a good hot dog. (And hush with your filthy comments!) Might even buy some Oil of Olay products. Seems fitting.

Tomorrow is for sleeping in and just futzing around. Mick and Wolf will 'sneak out' to B&N so Wolf can buy me Ina Garten's newest. I know I've said I don't use recipes, but Foolproof is food porn at its finest. Plus it'll make Wolf happy to give me something other than a dvd. He always gives me a movie. Birthday, Christmas, Mother's Day. He doesn't lack imagination or caring so much as he lacks funds and his own set of wheels. We were at B&N last week on our usual book buy and I pointed the cookbook out to my kid. Wolf took a picture of it with his phone! I thought this terribly handy and clever. (See? Even the most simple of goodies escapes me when it comes to these newfangled smart phones. I would have sent them to the bookstore with a written list. Duh!)

Sunday? Sunday will be The Big Event. I don't have a clue what Mick has planned. For real! He's instructed me to put on my sparkly dress and be ready at 5:30. Destination unknown. I have done my best not to pry and when Mick brings it up I clap literal and mental hands over my ears. I will NOT spoil my surprise by 'hearing' his thoughts. Poor Mick longs to be begged for hints but I can't risk it. I know him too well and his thoughts are almost my own in how easy it is to see into his mind. I want to be delighted. He understands, but can't help being a little disappointed that he can't tease me with clues and mysterious hints. Treating me to special stuff is his biggest pleasure. Loving a witch has its drawbacks, the biggest being having to ward up around me when he's planning a surprise. Whatever he's planned for Sunday will be fabulous, I'm certain. Dinner at a swank place with a view of the Hudson? A show? A moonlight picnic atop the Empire State Building? Misdirecting me to don my fancy clothes and then taking me out dancing at my favorite dive bar with a live band? Renting a theater and showing 'The Wizard of Oz' on a big screen for a private viewing? Whisking me off to a jewelry store and presenting me with a sparkly he's had specially commissioned? Hell, for all I know Mick's arranged for me to meet Stephen King. Or he might just drive us around for an hour while caterers slip in here and set up a candlelit dinner for two of hot dogs and onion rings on our own dining room table. Mick is the ultimate romantic.

And that, my friends, is the best birthday gift of all. To be so very loved after far too many lonely sad years.

50? Fifty is gonna be great. ~LA

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