I’m 48 today.
That’s something I’m still trying to get a grasp on. I can go back over a few memorable birthdays: my 40th, where I did a drunken Wallenda dance on a pier trying to get on a ferry to Hoboken to catch the last train out of there because the PATH wasn’t running. My 30th, where I worked on what was to become the worst hangover of my life( the following day) in an evening of drunken revelry with my then alcoholic manic-depressive girlfriend, not realizing that in just over a decade I’d be in the same condition. My 18th birthday where I had my first “legal” drink (yes, the drinking age was 18 and the age you could by cigarettes was 16) and smoked in front of my parents for the first time in a Chinese restaurant that had that tacky tiki 70’s decor. These were memorable; these were occasions, these were events in my life. Today just seems completely inconsequential, and where my birthday used to have some special quality to it…it just seems like another day to me, only I’m older.
Perhaps I AM getting older. I hear the words of my parents coming out of my mouth, and I try and stop that from happening before it happens but it’s impossible to do so. My eyesight is getting worse; I’m nearsighted with a terrible case of farsightedness…go figure THAT one out. I’m also a bit crazy, and my back is giving out on me. My teeth are gone, but I have a fabulous pair of dentures (that look amazingly real) that allow me to eat steak again. Also on the bright side, I don’t drink anymore and I eat very well and very healthy. True, I still smoke like a chimney…but I need at least ONE vice…everyone does.
So here I am at 2am…older, definitely wiser, and unable to sleep. I guess it’s just like every other day.
“Last week the candle factory burned down. Everyone just stood around and sang, ‘Happy Birthday.’ ” – Steven Wright