Monday, March 23, 2009
You know your getting old when...
My post today really isn't about art, it's about getting older. It's something that we can't avoid and is inevitable. Even thought all the commercial enterprises that sell all the creams, potions and pills think otherwise, we all will get old. Personally I don't really mind it and normally don't think about it much.
In just under 2 weeks I am turning 47 and besides the aches in the morning, a couple of medications I take daily and having to read a restaurant menu at arms length, I feel pretty good about it. But this weekend I actually felt old.
I have to preface this by saying I love my friends. My wife and I are lucky to have close friends who are not judgmental, who are warm, intelligent, creative and fun. The kind of people you want to be around.
We went to a dinner Saturday night and were happy to be getting together with them. Good food, good wine and wonderful company is always a great way to spend the evening especially with this group. But for part of the night, the conversation was about things I had no frame of reference to, no concept of what it was, why it was interesting or why it was funny. There was a lot of talk about gaming and "cons" that I really am not sure what the appeal is but I am happy that my friends are into it. Then as they were talking I was just thinking that my 16 year old son would love this conversation. The "Old Button" was hit.
There were spoofs on Star Wars, that they played on a laptop that everyone thought was really funny, except me. All I could think about was how I saw it opening weekend back in the 1977. I was in high school. I think most of our friends have only seen it on video or the new released version. Again, the "OLD Button" was hit.
Even though I was born really before computers and calculators were household items, I really am not that old, but for some reason for the first time I really felt it. I felt the age gap widening. It's no ones fault, and I guess it's a natural progression, but it really seems that the progression is speeding up. I now have my "cheater" glasses at my studio, my house, and in my purse. (Yes, I carry a man purse).
In my professional life, I am constantly hit with the age gap and I am used to it. I photograph models who are my daughter's age, who think that a Playstation game system is "retro" and who really can't tell you what band Paul McCartney was in before now. But again, I expect this and this really never bothers me, in fact it really is humorous. Last weekend wasn't so humorous, it left me thinking about the past and about what have I done with my life. Your middle aged and still trying to figure out what to do when you grow up.
I love my friends and am very thankful that I have them, I am just scared that the gap is widening and I just might fall in.
Luckily I have a wife who is very close to my age and who understands that sitting on a porch with a bottle of wine, me painting or shooting, her knitting, is a really nice way to spend an afternoon. And we'll get them up on the porch with us... sooner than they think.
Post script: If your curious about the image, it was one of my first photos exhibited. I shot it on film and developed it myself in 1982, 27 years ago. I think it is actually older than a few of my friends!