How to age 20 years in 13 months

And, just over one year later, I’m back.

I actaually thought this blog spot had disappeared into the series of tubes that is the Internet. I just came to because I finally had an idea for a blog, which was to share and comment on new recipes, restaurants and all other things food, despite the deluge of such blogs. In my defense, I planned on using it for my own record – a reminder that the chili needs a little less cayenne, or that the shrimp enchiladas would make an easy dish for dinner guests – and as a place to point people when they ask for a recipe.

Anyway, I type in, and what appears, but Hot Breakfast! One lonely employer-mandated post churned out to satisfy a requirement of “Digital 101” class. It seemed so pointless at the time. But today, it greeted me as a cheery time capsule from April 2008. In many ways, not much has changed. But in other ways, everything has changed. Looking at my updates, the theme seems to be “how to age 20 years in 13 months .” See for yourself.

April ’08: What Sticks. And I’ve been blabbing about it to anyone who will stand still long enough.

May ’09: I can’t remember the last book I finished. I have Malcom Gladwell’s Outliers, Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child, and The Red Tent, which I’ve been meaning to read since 2002, on my nightstand. However, I am now a subscriber to the Sunday News and Observer, and I usually read most of the articles once I’ve finished clipping coupons. (Subscribing to a newspaper in the digital age? Clipping coupons? Add 5 years.)

April ’08: 30 Rock. Oh, welcome back to my television, Tina Fey!

May ’09: 30 Rock is still the funniest thing on TV, period. I’m also watching American Idol for the first time in a few years, thanks to the freakish delight that is Adam Lambert. (I know American Idol is America’s past time, but I still mostly associate it with my mother-in-law, so add 3 years).

Insisting on
April ’08: Eight hours of sleep.

May ’09: Can’t say the eight hours are always happening, but God knows I’m trying. The difference is that before, I was sleeping from midnight to 8:00. Now, I’m trying to get to bed by 10:30, so I don’t mind when I wake up at 6:15 and can’t fall back asleep. (Going to bed early, even on weekends, and getting up early and enjoying it? Add 5 years).

Obsessing over
April ’08: The old people in “Young at Heart.” I know I am going to bawl through that movie, and I can’t wait!

May ’09: Bawl through that movie, I did. I saw it in a small theather with Mr. D, my mom and my sister. We could have sold tickets for the sob fest put on by the three Schultz women. “Fix You” will never be the same again.

(I have always, and will always, cry at pretty much anything involving old people and animals. Add zero years.)

April ’08: Twitter. Another employer-mandated assignment.

May ’09: Sorry, but I still hate Twitter. As soon as my mom, prompted by a segment on the Today Show, asked me “now, what is this Twitter?”, the deal was sealed. (Resisting new-fangled technology? Add 10 years. But, complaining about it before it hit the mainstream AND able to explain it to my mother? Subtract 8 years. Net +2.)

April ’08: To get back into running. Less than 6 months ago, I finished a 10k. Last night, I wheezed and burned (and not in the Nike commercial way) through 2.5 agonizing miles. Sad.

May ’09: Well, no wonder that run was such a beast – it turned out I was about a month pregnant at the time. I couldn’t figure out why I was so nauseous at the end of those runs! Not to mention why I was so nauseous when I rode in a hot, smokey cab from downtown Chicago to O’Hare, or stood in the blazing sun without water at the Superchunk/Arcade Fire show in support of Obama, or even THOUGHT about Eclipse peppermint gum, collard greens, hot tea, cookie ice cream, salmon ceasar salad – basically, anything other than fruit and cheese sandwiches.

As far as what I’m attempting these days? Figuring out the sweet spot for Baby Dill’s bedtime – early enough to avoid a meltdown, late enough that he sleeps through the night. And, ideally, at a time that I can still make and eat dinner. (Baby D, of course, is the child who started as the embryo that was screwing with my sense of smell, taste and balance last spring.) (Obsession with bedtime? That’s probably age-appropriate. Add zero years.)

April ’08: People’s refusal to put their f-ing smart phones down for more than 6 minutes at a time. This is more than booing, really. It’s maniacal, wide-eyed, spit-flying ranting.

May ’09: I’m still booing any type of electronic device that distracts from the present moment. But I’m this close to getting a smartphone of my own. Will I practice what I preach?

“The most precious gift we can offer others is our presence.” Please remind me of this if I start furtively checking my email under the table while we’re in a meeting or at lunch.

(Getting an iPhone? Subtract 5 years. Complaining about people using them? Add 10. Net +5.)

April ’08: It’s Friday, 84 degrees and sunny, and there’s a beer is roughly 7 hours in my future.

May ’09: You may have noticed that beer was not on the list of things that nauseated me before I knew I was pregnant. Oops. That said, I’m celebrating the fact that Baby D seems relatively bright, happy and healthy despite enjoying a few hefeweizens in utero. Oh, and celebrating that I am once again able to enjoy the occasional drink. (Enjoying a weekend cocktail: subtract 5 years. Falling asleep after one: add 5. It’s a wash.)

ETA: Whitney just kindly pointed out that I wrote “May ’08” instead of “May ’09” for about half of the post, and, to capture my senility, should add 4 more years. So color me 54. 55 on May 29.

This reminds me of a strange trend I’ve noticed with the over-60 crowd, including, unfortunately, my father, and various members of the Durham Chamber of Commerce. I can count at least 5 times I have heard one of them refer to the year as “two-oh-nine.” Not “two-thousand nine,” and not “oh-nine,” but 209. Can anyone explain this? And if you hear me do this, please drape a shawl over my shoulders and ship me off to the home. Thank you.