Like the billions and billions of humans that have lived before me, I am becoming increasingly aware of my age. I am not saying that I am “Old”, I’m only 32. Well…I’ll be 32 for 24 more days. Then I turn 33. I am fairly sure that I lose a startling amount of collagen when the clock strikes midnight on my birthday. I’m also fairly sure my ass sags a little further towards the center of gravity on this day as well.
Anyway. Let’s just say that I am aware that I could now co-star in the 80′s dramady “Thirtysomething”.
I have changed quite a bit between my early twenties and my early thirties. I know that this is normal. It would be much more abnormal if I had stayed the same, I think. One thing I have noticed? How young people start looking, well….YOUNG. Baby-faced. Almost too young to be in college, getting married having kids. Did I ever look that young??
My attitude and tastes have changed a lot as well. I can’t pull all-nighters and rebound the same way that I did in high school and college. I don’t eat ice cream anymore. And…I used to love all things wedding. Yup. I was one of “Those” girls. I used to go try on wedding dresses for fun with my friends in high school and flip through Bride Magazine while standing in line at the supermarket. I never got sick of planning my own wedding in my head. I just dug them.
I think having two weddings cured me for life. Actually, one wedding was probably adequate to do that. I offered to elope with Jonathan, but it was his first marriage and he wanted it. While it was all groovy and grand, I really wonder if I will be able to rebound by the time my own children get married. I’m still girlie and like girlie things, but time has dialed my level of “Precious” way the hell back.
A few nights ago, Jonathan and I ate out at one of his favorite restaurants. It’s a yummy Mexican eatery that is cafeteria style. I know, it sounds lame but the pulled pork salad is yummy. It was packed. I was tired and didn’t really want to stand in a huge ass line that could rival Splash Mountain at Disneyland. This place is also hugely popular with high school and college kids for date nights because it’s good, cheap food. Do you know how much perfume and cologne gets worn by young daters wanting to enhance their hormone-induced pheromones to be alluring? Line waiting only seems longer when you engulfed in the scent equation of “Shock and Awe”.
But that is what my husband wanted and I like making him happy, so there it is.
We approached the end of the line to move through the “Corral” and the tiny, petite, perfectly coiffed and manicured blond girl in front of us started jumping up and down and shrieking with glee as she threw her arms around the blushing redheaded boy she was with.
Apparently, for some reason that can only be known to them, he chose a hot, stuffy, crowded and perfume-clad cafeteria line to give his fiancee her diamond ring. Her rapturous shrieks lasted for quite awhile. So did his blushing, but at some point they calmed down and just kept beaming at one another and people around them offered their congratulations.
All I could think is “My FREAK they look so young.”
Then it happened.
The “Engagement Phenomenon”. I realize that this is not something that happens in ALL engaged women. Just SOME engaged women. For example? I read blogs of two perfectly rational engaged women that would rather stick a fork in both their eyes than engage in the following behavior.
Some newly engaged women seem to be able to seek each other out. It’s like a shark smelling chum in the water from miles and miles away or a bloodhound catching the faintest whiff of something.
It drives them and bonds them together: Must.see.and.comment.on.new.engagement.ring. Tonight was no exception. Pretty soon, the PPB (Petite, Perky Blond) was totally enraptured in conversation with two other newly-ringed girls and one “Just Married” girl in line. It was ok, really. It’s an exciting time of life and a big moment for anyone.
Then someone came up behind us in line and brushed up against me.
As fate would have it, yet another perky, petite blond (We’ll call her PPB#2) came in and stood in line directly in back of us and started straining to hear the engagement conversation occurring directly in front of us. She, along with the giggling gaggle of girls with her all had elaborate updo’s worn with snugly fit terrycloth track suits in varying arrays of pastels. I saw the eye of PPB#1 and her chatty co-horts catch the arrival of PPB#2 and her giggling gaggle.
All I could think is: UH-OH.
Once the two gangs of girls smelled “Engagement” on the other, there was no hope. Jonathan and I were trapped. Right in the middle of a perfect storm of “WEDDING!!!!!!! SQUEEEE!!!!!!!!”
PPB#1: Your ring is so PRETTY!
PPB#2: Thanks! Isn’t it? I just got my bridals done tonight with my brides maids!”
PPB#1: No WAY! I just got my ring tonight! Who is your photographer? When are you getting married? Who’s your florist? Cake decorator? Where did you get your veil? Your shoes? Your whosit’s and whatsit’s galore??? Blah, blah! Blabbibity, blah, blah, blah!!!!
As you can tell, at that point my brain began to melt and ooze out of my nostril cavities.
It went on, and on, and ON. It was a stuffy, claustrophobic, headache-inducing situation that seemed to never end. It felt like Jonathan and I were squished right in the middle of a frilly wedding-fest that we really didn’t want to be invited to. All I could think of (Besides “Get me the hell out of here”) was to wonder if I had ever done this to people before and to apologize to the universe with my mind for any zealously fru-fru inconvenience I had ever caused to anyone.
I also felt very grateful to be past this stage of life and appreciated my saggy ass and 32.8 years.Â I would not go back, no siree.
By the time we FINALLY got to the counter, paid for our take out and were able to leave I literally ran and bolted out of the building and sat there sucking in the fresh, cold night air that was sweetly tinged with freedom.
Jonathan chucked at my relief.
“See? You made it, honey. Besides, it wasn’t THAT long. Just over 15 minutes or so.”
“True, but it was seemed longer. I think those 15 minutes should be counted like dog-years and we should times it by 7.”
“So…This means you’re a dog? You’re calling yourself a bitch?”
“You realize that comment will require the purchase of Diet Coke AND chocolate on the way home, right?”