The Unsung Delights of Middle Age, and No One Sends Me Flowers (Just Send Cash Instead ;))

backward swimsuit

 

Middle age has its distinct disadvantages, but there are some distinct advantages to be had for the cougar/geezer set that most people don’t think about.

 

1. No one asks (begs, coerces, etc.) you to be a bridesmaid in her wedding.  This is a very beautiful thing, considering the last time I had to do that was in 1993 , and I’m still pissed at my oldest sister for that outlay of cash and aggravation.

fugly dress

No, I’m NOT wearing that- or any other dress without sleeves.  Ever.

At my advanced age I don’t have to worry about it. Nobody in her right mind wants my freaky ass in her wedding pictures. My sisters are the only ones who didn’t let me decline the bridesmaid thing graciously. One has been married since 1993 (thank God because there is no amount of coercion that will make me do the bridesmaid thing again- ever) and the other is happily divorced.  Anyone else who makes that request, I can and will tell to go blow with impunity, but my friends pretty much know better than to ask.  I’ll gladly attend your wedding and even buy you crap, (or get you a Target gift card,) but that’s the extent of my involvement.

2. Aunt Flo doesn’t visit any more.  Not since the hysterectomy.  I couldn’t be more delighted with that.

 

coffee and boobs

Hot flashes suck- but I can wear white pants any time I want!

3. Older people have a certain amount of gravitas in dealings with the young and inexperienced.  I also have buff young college boys asking me if I need help with my groceries.  I don’t need help with my groceries, though it would be nice when I get home with them if Jerry didn’t disappear every time I’m unloading the car.

Young woman unpacking shopping bag in kitchen

I already brought in the cat litter, dog food, beer, (which I don’t drink) and 12 packs of pop.

Come to think of it, I don’t shit in the cat litter or eat the dog food either, but they don’t have thumbs.

Granted, nobody bothers to send me flowers but I have no idea what to do with them.  They sit on my desk for a few days, die, and then I throw them out.

ugly flowers

Just give me the cash.

Back in the day there was no such thing as political correctness in the clothing industry. We can all remember when fat boys’ clothes were called “Husky.”  I don’t think they have “Husky” sizes any more.

chubbies

Even Lane Bryant doesn’t use the “Chubby” word anymore, even when referring to size Extreme Lard Ass.

Imagine the politically correct furor that would ensue should any clothier use an ad like the one pictured above.  Stand back and watch the fireworks.  However, in the 1950’s virtually nobody was fat, so this ad would only apply to a handful of girls rather than most of them.

I say just make everything a one-size-fits-all mu-muu if your ass is that huge.

Scary Bad Parenting, “Functional” is Not the Same as “Normal,” and Don’t Stifle My Creativity

Just blow that second-hand smoke all over your child’s developing lungs!

I have to admit, nothing contributes to the desire to chain smoke more than dealing with infants and toddlers, unless it’s dealing with automotive technicians.  At one time I had to contend with both, though in the end, chain smoking just feeds the nervous tension.  Thankfully I had taken a three-year hiatus from smoking, beginning a year and a half before the illustrious offspring arrived until about a year and a half after the illustrious offspring arrived. At least I didn’t knowingly contaminate the child whilst he was in the womb- mostly because I feared giving birth to a drooling slack-jawed cretin should I indulge in an aspartame-laden Diet Dr. Pepper, or a hit off a cigarette, or God forbid, a cup of coffee.  He’s potty trained, literate and gainfully employed, and he can pick his nose with his tongue!

I blame the tongue thing on the Sudafed.  One stinking Sudafed in week 3 of gestation, and the kid’s born tongue-tied.  Let that be a lesson.

Lávese las manos!  In NC, the obligatory employee bathroom instructions are only in English. In some parts of Ohio there’s 14 different languages on the sign – and there’s still millions of crusty people who don’t wash their hands in the bathroom.

I always wondered, since there’s dippy pictorial signs everywhere, either for the illiterate or the non-English speaking or both, why not a universal “wash your hands after using the crapper sign? ”  My art skills are pretty rudimentary, but here’s a thought:

Here’s my contribution for the betterment of humanity.  Enjoy, and wash your damned hands!

The cigarette jones is a strong compulsion, though. I know what possessed me to pick them back up.  I was stressed, sleep deprived, working a very shitty job with very shitty pay after I’d been promised all kinds of things that never materialized, and in the process of getting a divorce.  I was driving back from some backwater town running titles (which wasn’t what I was hired to do, but getting out is getting out) and happened to stop at a gas station for more coffee when I saw the Marlboro sign.  After three years of no smoking at all- from 1989-92, I bought a pack of Marlboro Menthol Light 100s and hot-boxed half the pack on the way back home.  I was a two-pack a day smoker for the next ten years, sometimes lighting one right off of the butt of the one I’d just smoked.  I apologize to Steve-o for letting him think that smoking was OK.  Strangely enough, he took them up three years after I’d quit (God willing for good) in 2002.  But he won’t smoke his cigs in that high faluting Audi, because he doesn’t want to “stink up the leather.”

No smoking in the Steve-o ride.  It might make the leather stink.

I’ll never make any sort of claim that I’m “normal.”  Functional, yes, but that’s not quite the same thing.  Rednecks piece together machinery and devices that are functional, but not exactly in the ways the designers had originally intended.

I don’t need no stinkin’ latches!  Though I think the bungees are holding the decklid and the rear fascia on too.

The Marion Walmart never disappoints as far as the panoply of redneck engineered motor vehicles in the parking lot.  Sadly this poor Pontiac is 1.) likely totalled and/or the one who hit it had no insurance or 2.) the one driving it when it was hit had no insurance, and making a police report would have cost him/her his/her license. Or, 3.) the driver of said Pontiac took the insurance settlement and spent it on crack.   If I were a betting person (which I’m not) I would wager on #3.  Perhaps it’s mean of me to photograph others’ misfortune, but it’s funny in a tragic sort of way.  I’ve driven my share of shitty cars, but that was in the days before digital photography made the disasters so easy to share.

What I don’t get about this 70’s Midol ad is the guys deserve some of the aggravation right back at them.  Especially Jerry.

Another thing I discovered about menopause is that you don’t need Aunt Flo as an excuse to channel your inner bitch.  I can be bitchy all month long AND wear white pants while I’m bitchy, even when I’m sitting in the freezer.  The hot flash thing isn’t nearly as bad as it was a year or two ago, but it’s still bad when I’m watching polar bears on TV and at times I wish I was hanging out on the icebergs with them.   I don’t think I’ve worn a sweater for years, or more PJs than light PJ pants and a t-shirt.  I would probably be smothering to death if I had long hair.  Now I know why old women have short hair.  It’s easier to color, yes, but it’s also a hell of a lot cooler.

I have every right to keep on bitching!

Beauty Tips for the Bar Fly, Better Thee Than Me, and Double Entendre

I am by no means anything to look at.  I try not to leave the house without makeup lest I traumatize small children and dogs, but I’ve not been shitfaced drunk since that fateful morning sometime in 1993 when I woke up submerged in a bathtub full of cold water next to a half-eaten Domino’s pizza.  Blood pressure meds and rotgut liquor don’t mix too well.   More than a half a glass of wine and I pass out these days.  So, it sort of shocked me when I got e-mails with these subject lines today:

Top  10 Bar Hopping Hairstyles

How to Get Bar Stink Out of Your Hair

and my favorite- How to Look Good Hungover.

I don’t look good stone sober.  If I would look better with a hangover, perhaps I should try it out.

I also wonder what kind of hairstyles are kind to the bar fly?  Sinead O’Connor’s? 

It’s low maintenance, there’s nothing there to absorb the bar stink,  and if someone pukes on your head, it just wipes off.  I do sort of wonder about her, though.  She shaves her head, but lets man-fur grow on her arms?  Ewww.  Let a little bit of hair grow on your head, but shave your arms!

There are a number of things in my life I am quite thankful for.  Saying goodbye forever to the purveyors of certain feminine products comes to mind.  I don’t miss one minute of Aunt Flo and the curse, believe that.  

Why do they try to make the packages seem to be so damned cheery?  Should the Naproxen bottles have stoned people and flowers on them too?

Maybe they just didn’t give me good enough drugs to enjoy all the swimming, horseback riding, kitten-cuddling, butterfly-and-unicorn watching, and lacrosse playing (???) that everyone else seemed to be doing during that “special time” of the month.  It seemed no matter how many Midols or Naproxens I managed to down that I was 1.) sitting in a sticky glob of my own stinky coagulated blood that always seemed to defy containment in those lovely feminine hygiene devices, and 2.) using every ounce of restraint (whilst inwardly writhing in pain) to keep from throttling Jerry and/or everyone else who happened to piss me off.   I don’t miss that shit one bit.  In this regard, menopause, surgical or otherwise, rules.

I love my granddaughter, don’t get me wrong, but I am quite thankful that I’m not the one dealing with car seats and diapers and so forth all the time.  Then again in a way I can sort of appreciate her more because I’m not doing the Mom thing 24-7.   I watched her for a few hours yesterday while the kids ran some errands which was very nice, but it was also very nice to go home to sleep in my own bed and only having to worry about the dogs.  Getting up and having to get Sheena out at 4AM is bad enough.   I have to wonder how Steve-o survived being an infant as insane as my schedule was, but I also admit I really regret not being able to spend much time with him other than getting the necessary things done.  I am reminded so much of how much I missed with him, but there’s nothing I can do to change it now.  I can be grateful that he’s not a serial killer, he is a straight man, and he seems to have a decent head on his shoulders -at least once you get past those nasty earrings.

I think double entendre is one of the highest forms of humor, especially when I always seem to be around people who don’t quite get it.  Mom is notorious for letting such innuendo go right over her head.  I can only hope that Steve-o does not try what he was joking about last night for a variety of reasons.  Just because it’s a pump and it generates suction does not mean it’s suitable for a certain part of the male anatomy, so leave the breast pump alone.  Ewww.  I don’t think he would do it.  Mom never even got the hint which was probably a good thing.  Catholics regard oral sex as a sin, so I am pretty sure her mind didn’t go there.   They don’t even condone masturbation the old fashioned way, so I’m pretty that any hanky-panky involving a machine of any kind would be a sin too.  Sex is only OK if you’re procreating and not enjoying it. I bet Mom would freak if she knew that (long, long ago) I actually had sex with a man, with the lights on, not in the standard missionary position, AND, I liked it. 

Now I know why I’m not Catholic.   If the opportunity for sex ever arises again (unlikely, but who knows?) at least I will be free to enjoy it.  (sans critters, of course!)

Ohio is Not a Tropical Paradise, (So Put on Some Pants,) the Second Amendment, and Navigational Exploits

For the past five years or so, and most especially for the year or thereabouts following my hysterectomy, I have been somewhat plagued with hot flashes.  At times they have been so severe that I have found myself completely drenched in sweat and burning up for no apparent reason.   Since my Dr.s expressly forbid me to take any kind of hormone replacement, given my history, I have to deal with it.  I’ve been tempted at times to sit in the freezer, I often (even in winter) use a small table fan at night, and it has to be extremely cold for me to even entertain the idea of wearing a sweater or heavy shirt.   Over the past year or so my heat sensitivity has improved somewhat, but even now I am more likely to overheat than to freeze.  The only exception to this is my hands.  My hands still freeze very easily even if the rest of my body is burning up.  Go figure.

Even given the inconvenience of menopausal heat sensitivity, I can’t bring myself to wear shorts outside in the winter.  Every time I see young punks outside in shorts- even the Bermuda type- and/or flip-flops when it’s below freezing, I really have to wonder.  I know damned well the girls are too young for menopause and the boys don’t really have any excuse other than maybe the man-fur on their legs does something as far as insulation, but I doubt it.

Despite the wistful imaginings of the global warming crowd, Ohio is not a tropical paradise.  Maybe for three months out of the year we have near-tropical weather, as in stygian heat, 100% humidity and plenty of rain, but it’s not year-round.   The remainder of the year is still 100% humidity, and plenty of precipitation, but cold, and at times that precipitation is freezing rain or snow.

The lesson in this:  It’s February.  Put on some damned pants.  At least until the end of May, when it might actually be warmer than fifty degrees.  I blame Target for putting the bathing suits out in January.  Just because it’s currently on the store shelf does not mean that it’s the appropriate clothing item for the season.

Some clothing items are never appropriate, regardless of the season. 

Yesterday I was reminded of why I very seldom go on shopping excursions with Jerry.  I hate shopping anyway, and I loathe crowds.  I am surprised I volunteered myself into that one, but he always likes it better if I drive.  It’s always better for him if it’s my car and my gasoline, and me driving, for two reasons.  One, my car gets far better mileage than his truck, and two, I am less likely to get lost.   He refuses to drive my car (good for me in the grand scheme of things, as I really don’t like anyone driving my car) because I have a concealed carry permit.  If the cops would pull him over in my car, they would run the plate and assume that there are weapons in the vehicle.  It is also likely that anyone driving my car would be approached by the cops at gunpoint, which would really freak him out.   I know if I’m pulled over that I’m supposed to put my hands on the wheel and let the cop know whether or not I’m packing, but Jerry has been known to get lippy with cops, which is never a good idea, even if you’re right.  A good friend once told me that there are two good reasons why you won’t overpower, outsmart, or outrun cops: Smith & Wesson and Motorola.  One cop is always going to be armed, and one cop always has that nice little radio to call for backup.  It’s better to comply with their requests and figure out the details later.

I’ve never been a fan of gun control.  I’ve never been a fan of government absolving people from the consequences of their poor decisions either, but what do I know?  If the government seems to think that encouraging stupidity as well as shielding people from the consequences of their own stupidity, have suddenly become civil rights, then I guess it is a good idea (for the law-abiding, rational person) to be armed and to protect oneself even if it is necessary to go through some red tape and hoop jumping.  Thankfully the Framers of the Constitution were a lot smarter than the current crop of jackoffs holding office, and- at least for now- the Second Amendment still stands.  I could go on for days on this particular tangent, but I’m not going to.  Unlike a good number of politicians, I’ve read the Constitution.  I believe I have a pretty solid understanding of it. If you take your time and sift through some of the archaic language, it’s not terribly difficult to understand.  Government has responsibilities, but more importantly it is supposed to have boundaries. 

The weather was quite cold and windy yesterday, but it was sunny for a change,  so I had to deal with both Jerry’s waywardness and unduly crowded stores.  By the time we got home I was thoroughly worn out not so much from walking or driving, but by chasing Jerry about and weaving in and out of crowded aisles and displays.  Jerry is not terribly easy to keep track of, as he is prone to wander off and then I am not only manuevering my way through the crowds but I’m trying to find him as well.  It’s a sort of a twisted three dimensional version of “Where’s Waldo,” only it’s “Where’s Jerry,” and unlike Waldo, he keeps moving.

If I could I would get Jerry one of those kid leashes specifically for shopping excursions or times when I have to take him out in public and I know it will be difficult to retrieve him.  It’s a thought.  Or I could modify one of the Flexi leashes we have for the dogs.