Today is my birthday. I’ll cut to the chase: I’m 54.
Even though my sister, Dovima, has gifted me with a near-lifetime supply of allegedly age-defying goops, I would rather the numbers were reversed. Yes, I wish I was 45 again, but when I was 45, I wished I were 40. When I was 40, I was ill about being 40 and so unaccomplished. I longed to do over my thirties. While in my lackadaisical thirties, I did not put much thought into time, figuring the Success Fairy would find me and tap me on my shoulder. He had other plans. In my slacker twenties, I assumed I had thousands of days to figure out what to do with my life — in my thirties. When I was in my teens, I imagined I would sooner die before I grew old, such as an ancient age like 54. When I was an under ten, all I wanted to do was grow up because then I would no longer have to go to school or take orders from anyone and life would be easy peasy. Looking back, if I had my life to live over from conception, I would slow down and let that sperm that was swimming behind me take the lead.
Me: You can have this gig, buddy.
So today, I am 54, the last number in the desired 18-54 age demographic. The demographic that advertisers covet. The consumer that’s lusted after by car manufacturers, cosmetics companies, food conglomerates, trendy product-makers that shill on TV shows I never watch and in magazines I don’t read. Next year, I am carted off to the land of dentures, constipation, erectile dysfunction, bladder control problems, adult diapers that — woo hoo! — “look and feel like underwear”, high fiber supplements, stool softeners, fast acting inhalers, dry eye drops, warnings about shingles and advice to buy supplemental health insurance. With all these problems waiting to tackle me, I’m going to need that big-time. Meanwhile, I can hear the clock ticking louder and louder. I had better do something productive with my final 365 days of fading glory before I turn into a pile of dried out, medicated, piss-soaked dust, with a flaccid lady-boner who’s incapable of taking a comfortable crap.
Succumbing to the pressure of inevitably horrific personal decline, I finished my Manhattan Project this week. What is my Manhattan Project? It’s my first book: Lame Adventures: Unglamorous Tales From Manhattan.
More to come about this illustrated masterpiece so stay tuned.