I’ve been explaining to a newly minted twenty-five year old co-worker that even though we’re “only” five years apart I am significantly older than he is. He doesn’t believe that in five years time he too will succumb to an involuntary delight at going to bed before midnight (okay…11:00 pm), especially on a Friday; and the need to monitor your caffeine intake during the day-because if you miss the magic window you’ll be up until 2 am and your whole next day is shot! He scoffs at my tales of heart burn from two tablespoons of spaghetti sauce, and three day hang overs from two (admittedly large) glasses of wine. So it was with unparalleled delight that I got to witness his first of many “when I was your age” moments. The fear and dread at which he peered up at me, as the twelve year old student with him worked away obliviously, was gratifying and heady. The knowledge that yes, once again, Amanda was right settled upon him like a shroud. And I laughed. Oh how I laughed!
I will be the first to admit thirty really isn’t that old! I have plenty of life left in me, and when all is said and done I simply enjoying playing up the fact that I have now crossed from Young Adult to simply Adult status- as terrifying and ill advised as that may seem.
Yet, from time to time I really do feel old.
Case in point- McDonald’s last weekend. I was enjoying my McGriddle and Orange Juice (contemplating the likely hood of needing antacids on the way home) when a group of four or five teenaged girls claimed the table next to mine. They proceeded with their teenage idle chatter which I’m sure consisted mostly of One Direction and Justin Beiber (see I know things). They caught my attention though when amid their discussion of the latest nail polish colour- I assume- one asked the others what a “Landline” was.
A great hush fell over the table as they contemplated each other, and this seemingly difficult question.
My stomach clenched at the realization that this was, in fact, no joke and that they were all puzzling it out- and using Google on their smart phones to Wikipedia it.
“I think,” one said skeptically, “that its like a phone but that goes to your house…you know like on a wire or something, and you can’t bring it with you.”
Laughter abounded at the ridiculousness of the notion and then came the flurry of “That’s so Old-School” and “Like totes Old-Timey!”
Yes. Old-Timey. Thank you small children for reminding me that the main form of communication I had growing up as a child and well into my late teens/early twenties, does in fact belong in a museum. I’m sure it already is, and I would Google it to provide as fact if I could bear it. Not only do I remember the hours long conversations with my friends, and the tricky dance of stretching that curly cord to its utmost length in an attempt to reach that non-essential item off my dresser without disrupting the call, but I remember rotary phones.
That’s right. Why, back in my day you had to spin a dial to make a phone call. None of this fancy button pressing or finger swiping these young tikes have now. And I had to walk for an hour, up hill, both ways to school- in knee deep snow with nothing but garbage bags for shoes. The real durable kind, not these pansy eco-friendly, bio-degradable kinds they have today. The real Earth destroying kind. And I had to train a raccoon to stay on my head to keep my ears from falling off. I named him Scratchy.
Yes, thems was the good old days!
So while I embark on the journey that is turning 30, I will continue to squash the hope of those poor mid-twenty somethings with my harsh truths of reality, while simultaneously being reminded that for all I joke about it I am now “really old” to those who were born about, or after, 1994- which for the record, I also remember.
Share your “When I was Your Age Moments” in the comments so I don’t have to go to bed knowing that I am so very alone.