Clueless

Sometimes I feel really clueless.

And then sometimes, I just feel old.

Tonight, apparently, are the Golden Globe awards, and I was completely unaware that they were being televised until I signed on to Twitter and saw a kazillion snarky tweets about dresses and hairdo’s and sore losers making faces at the monitor.

It isn’t that I care so much about the Golden Globe awards, but it just seems as if I should have known they were on.

So, I’m clueless.

But before all that,  one of my friends asked me a question – the name of the computer store on the corner, the one that I walk by every morning when I walk the dogs, the one I actually told this friend about when she asked if I knew of a computer store in the neighborhood.

Do you think I could remember the name of the store?

No.

There was nothing but a huge black spot in my brain where the name of that store used to be.

And that made me feel really old.

As a matter of fact, the very same thing happened to me just a few days ago.  Someone asked to the name of something very familiar, and I could not, for the life of me, recall it.  Now, not only can I not recall the specific name, I can no longer recall who asked me or what they were asking about.

See, I’m not normally the kind of person who has trouble remembering things.  As a matter of fact, when anyone in my family wants to know the name of Aunt Mary’s youngest granddaughter’s husband and when they got married, they usually ask me.  I’m known as the archiver of useless and trivial information.

So when I lose the name of an ordinary store, a name that I look at each and every day as I walk by, and then look at it again later when I drive by on my way to work, then I feel not only old, but frightened.

I simply cannot start having dark black holes where my memory is supposed to be.

I know I’m getting old (er).  In another two months, I will be –wait, I’m mustering the courage to write this—55 years old.

Gulp.

The unfortunate thing about this whole “aging process” is that it’s completely irrevocable and totally out of my control.  Sure, I can exercise regularly, do crossword puzzles, and eat leafy greens until the cows come home, but there is no guarantee that any of that will do me one bit of good.  I could still end up an addlepated mess who can’t remember where’s she supposed to be at any given moment.  And don’t let people tell you that getting older is nothing to worry about, or that life begins when you’re 50, or that 60 is the new 40, or any of that other bromidic nonsense the media keeps hurling at us poor baby boomers in their pathetic attempt to make us feel optimistic enough to buy whatever product they’re selling.

Getting older is just for the birds, and there’s no two ways about it.

Maybe that’s why we start forgetting things as we age.  That way we don’t remember all the good things about being younger, so we can remain clueless about what we’re now missing.

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11 thoughts on “Clueless

  1. I had the same Twitter experience last night. I didn’t know about the Golden Globes, either, and I felt like the only one! I’ve always been scared of the aging process– even as a child I didn’t like the idea of growing older. When I went into double digits, I was sad about never getting to be 9 again. On a brighter note, does your upcoming birthday mean you’ll be celebrating 5 years of blogging? I, for one, appreciate the perspectives you offer cyberspace. 🙂

    • Angie, you are way to young to be thinking about getting older!! (Although I think you’re an “old soul,” and I mean that in the best possible way.)

      Yes, five year blogoversary coming up 🙂

  2. Becca, I hear you. I’ll be 48 next month so I am not far behind you. Getting older, to me, means one thing: all the physical ailments I have feared most of my life (for reasons too complex to list in a comment) are now becoming reality. I can no longer hide behind “I am too young to get this or that.” And because I have always numbed my anxieties with food and wine and am very overweight as a result, I am having a hard time coming to terms with the fact that I HAVE to change my ways lest I want to become what I have always feared: sick. Even friends who have always lived a healthier lifestyle than I are struck down by painful illnesses, including the dreaded C. Because that’s what happens when you get to our age, the physical decline is inevitable and part of the deal. As you say, no matter how well you look after yourself, there are no guarantees as to what gets you in the end. Because something WILL get you. As a result I feel like I live in a time-bomb, out of control and scared. There has to be a better way to age with dignity and grace, and to accept the process for what it is: a part of life. I think you are well on that path already 🙂

    • Kerstin, I know what you mean. Seems a day doesn’t go by without hearing of someone else being sick or dying – and these are people in my age group. Sometimes I think we know more than is good for us about all the potential diseases that could befall us. And for inveterate worriers it’s all to easy to get caught up in the cycle of paranoia.

      I’m just working hard to focus on the sunshine 🙂

  3. Oh, my gosh. You all are making me remember when I was four and afraid of what was living in the basement! 🙂

    I’m nearly 65, and I wouldn’t go back for anything. Of course we all could get sick and die tomorrow – but I could walk outside this afternoon and get hit by a car. Welcome to the world.

    Yes, I forget things. Sometimes I even forget important things, like “Don’t leave a wooden cutting board on an electric stove burner and crank that baby up on high”. Sigh. But I know two very important words: “cope” and “adapt”.

    I guess I have to disagree – getting older isn’t “for the birds” – it’s a wonderful gift. All of those bad decisions and wrong turns of my youth didn’t do me in, after all. From here on out, it’s clear sailing. As Bon Jovi says, “It’s my life….” and I intend on living it out as best I can.

    • Man, I wish I felt that way. I always feel so much older in the winter – I get all shriveled up with the cold, and my joints ache and creak. I know I’ll feel better when the sun comes back ..maybe my memory will improve too!

  4. I have to disagree also. I am 68 and I wouldn’t go back either. I love being my age despite the ailments that can catch us, but they can catch us at any age. I love the ease I feel and wisdom that comes with years. The fear, though still present at times (you never really lose it) is something I can deal with by concentrating on the sunny days. I believe it is a matter of choice how we handle it. For me, I prefer to live in the here and now, enjoying every minute, than hiding under the covers because I’m afraid of what might happen to me.

  5. I call it info overload — the store you go by — there’s so much on the route to see or things flying through your head while you pass… and the Globes — why should you know they are on unless you care. I say you’re carefully selecting the info that you need. The rest, maybe not so much. I think we all go through that — I know I do, too, and it frustrates me. But ultimately, does it really matter? Just go for it — and if you don’t know, it probably isn’t worth knowing to you!

  6. I recalled reading the first part of this post, but I couldn’t remember the rest of it. So I decided to check the comments to see if I’d commented. I hadn’t. I obviously read the beginning and was interrupted by something.

    I had no idea the Golden Globes were on either, but my favorite year was when Bette Midler walked out in a revealing dress and said, “Check out these golden globes, baby!”

    I hate getting older and I’m not perky or brave about it. I hate those sleepless nights when I think too much. I keep going forward and doing all that’s within my power to stay healthy, but I understand your fear. It isn’t pretty up ahead.
    I love your honesty, Becca, and it makes me feel like others are out there with the same trepidation.
    Bella

    • I just read a couple of books about aging that made me smile – Nora Ephron’s I Remember Nothing; and Tracey Jackson’s Between a Rock and a Hot Place- Why Fifty is Not the New Thirty. Anything that can make me laugh is a good thing these days 🙂

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