Me? No, I’m fine.
Are you sure? Because you’ve got that thing going, on your masthead? You know, like, just below where it says “Meanopause,” there’s like, this, divot?
Uh huh. Like a worry divot, maybe, or, like, from frowning?
That’s just some dirt on your screen or something.
Okay, but also, it’s just lately, you don’t, I don’t know, seem like yourself.
Oh? Like who do I seem?
There—right there, that’s a perfect example! The old blog would have said, “Like whom do I seem?” The old blog would have been all–
Wait. You’re complaining because I’m not pretentious enough for you?
Um. I mean, kinda?
I—I just, what? Did you just L-O-L me?
Do you literally see someone else here?
Okay. Okay, let me ask you this: what am I thinking?
How’m I supposed to know?
[sputtering] Because you, you, like, hooked my brain up to the microwave and now you can read my thoughts on the timer display or whatever, or like, you’re having me followed by telepathic rabbits or—I mean, go back and read yourself! You used to always “know” what I was thinking!
I don’t get it.
And where IS everyone, anyway? Where’s the ghost, and your college boy, and those girls you can’t tell apart, and that Jack, whom you call “Jack” like it’s not his name, even though it ISN’T?
Dude, can you even hear yourself?
The rumors are true, aren’t they?
That’s NOT a divot, is it? Oh my God, you’re—you’re tranSITioning!
You know, you kinda sound like a hater.
You’re having blog reassignment surgery!
That is a sick beat™, dude.
That’s not what that means! You don’t even know what that means! Quick: rhyme something for me.
“Play, play, play.”
That’s not rhyming. That’s repeating.
Fine: “Hate, hate, hate, shake, shake, shake.”
STOP IT! You’re 52 years old! You do know that you can’t just reassign yourself into Taylor Swift, right? Have you seen Uma Thurman’s botched blog?
It wasn’t botched. She just stopped using as many adjectives.
The whole point of Meanopause was to talk about aging with grace and humor, and to give the world a glimpse into how our lives’ second acts can be just as happy, even bewilderingly happier, than our first! You’re not Madonna—you don’t have to wrap up your assets in fishnets!
But they leave such cool diamond-shaped imprints on your paragraphs!
It’s February 13th, and not only did you never finish your Christmakkah poem, but now you don’t even have a loving Valentine post for your readers!
I think you mean “readers.” Or maybe “reader(s).”
The point is, I think you’re getting a little too caught up in youth culture. Face it: you don’t belong on sites like Tumblr. Do you have any idea how many Es you typically use in a single sentence, let alone an entire blog post?
Probably a lot.
Although, so far, not any.
Wow, still not any.
I could probably go on and on without using any.
Such as how I’m not using any right now, at all.
Are you done?
Ha! You can’t do it.
Anyway, the point I’m trying to make is that you already have a bunch of kids. You don’t need to be one.
No, but THAT’S JUST IT. As of tomorrow, I’m down to one.
You’re getting rid of all your kids except one? What a great idea! Think of all the money you’ll save! Which one will you keep? Oooh, wait, let us help you choose! We could make it a contest, and whichever kid gets the most votes—
No no no. One of my girls is turning 18 tomorrow.
Which one? The one who was looking for the other one in the mall last week, and saw herself in a mirror and thought she’d found the other one?
No, the other one. With the wavy hair.
Oh. For real?
And last night, she was making cupcakes to hand out to her friends at school today?
She was making cupcakes to give her friends? For her own birthday?
Yep. And her sister was helping, and Taylor Swift was blasting, and the room was glowing with this pretty warm orange color we’d painted it last week, and my tiny little almost-18 year-old said something about how this was the last birthday she’d be spending with us, since she’d be away at college this time next year.
Wait: her birthday’s tomorrow? On Valentine’s Day?
Yep. So I got to thinking about the Valentine’s post I was writing, which was all sort of mushy and gushy and about how I can’t imagine ever being happier than I am right now, and how every time I think that, it turns out I’m wrong, and I thought: but what if, this time, I’m right? What if this is as good as it gets?
And I looked at my tiny little almost-18 year-old daughter and remembered the Valentine’s day she was born, and how my mother lifted my 18-month old son onto the hospital bed so that he could kiss his brand-new sister, and I remembered thinking the exact same thing that day.
The thing about how what if this is as good as it gets?
Yep. And thinking, last night, well, in a way, that was as good as it got. Because my mother’s been gone a long time. And thinking how terribly, terribly sad it is to get old.
Okay, but what about the other one?
The other what?
The other daughter. The one with the straight hair. She wasn’t even born yet that day, so how could it possibly have been the happiest you could get? Plus, not to mention, where was “Jack”?
I mean, it sounds like he wasn’t even there last night, right? And your son’s already gone off to college?
Wait, so are you trying to say that happiness is elastic, and that I should quit trying to measure it because it’s always changing shape? That the advancement of time is as much about gain as it is about loss?
No. Actually, I don’t even get what you mean by that.
Yeah, me either. It’s like the poem says: “I’m just gonna shake shake shake shake shake, shake it off. Shake it off.”
Happy Valentine’s day, Blog.
Happy Valentine’s day, Disembodied and Unidentified Voice. And to all the Meanopauses and the extended Meanopause fambly. And to “all” the Meanopause “reader(s).” And to Uma Thurman, who, quite frankly, looks beautiful now. And happy birthday, Baby Girl.