Outfit Post: Am I old?

The other night I cuddled up on the couch with a glass of wine and watched in the circus that is the Grammy Awards. I took in performances by Justin Bieber and Katy Perry and Cee-Lo, along with throngs of teenage girls (and boys) who screamed their little tousled heads off in appreciation. There was glitter, and Rhianna in a dress that looked like a collapsed wedding cake, and Nikki Minaj as Elvira Queen of the jungle.  

As I watched the awards, it dawned on me that not only had I never heard of some songs being performed, most of the artists looked pre-adolescent, undernourished and in desperate need of showering. I became more and more confused. Have Kim Kardashian and J. Lo morphed into one glamazon super-creature? Was that my perfect perfect Gwynnie writhing and moaning on Cee-Lo's piano? (and has Cee-Lo taken a second job substituting for a Mardi Gras float?) AND what in God's great name am I supposed to make of Gaga's egg arrival and shirtless gogo dancer minions? Was it some kind of pro-poultry STATEMENT? Will I be expected to carry signs and protest in front of a federal building this weekend??? Because I have plans, you know.

As the show continued, a fear struck deep into my heart: I am officially getting old.

Getting old terrifies me. It means I'm crotchety and old-fashioned. Old people watch PBS and clip coupons and drive under the speed limit and read the newspaper in the library and rail about the demise of society. They reminisce about a time when a hamburger cost a quarter and people waited until marriage to have sex. They sit across from each other in really depressing restaurants like Denny's and don't talk. Old women wear polyester underwear pulled to their chins and perfume from Estee Lauder and spend hours in the beauty parlor setting their hair. The music is always too loud and the lines are too long and it's too hot or too cold and OH DON'T WORRY ABOUT ME, I'LL JUST WAIT BY THE PHONE FOR YOU TO CALL, IT'S NOT LIKE I HAVE ANYTHING BETTER TO DO. TOMORROW I MIGHT BE DEAD YOU KNOW.

There are lots of other signs which point to my almost elderly status:

My bedtime is creeping dangerously close to ten o'clock.
I aim for high fiber content.
I start sentences with "When I was your age..."
A movie and homemade dinner makes for a happening night.
I use the word "happening".

I sat awake most of the night, convinced I was going to suffer a stroke or heart attack or some other malady that strikes the elderly. But things looked different in the morning. I realized that there are lots of ways I remain youthful. For one, Fruit Loops are my most favorite meal ever. My tattoos certainly channel a young, risk-taking spirit. I love taking my kids to the playground and going down the slide. Ear-damaging loud concerts still make for the perfect night out. Experimenting with cosmetics at the MAC counter fills me with glee. I giggle over Spongebob and Pixar movies and can make a meal out of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. And I know how to rock my skinny jeans.

I suppose this outfit is a combination of my young and old parts. The cardigan is a senior citizen meatloaf-and-green-bean early bird special, but the jeans are a twenty-something grad student on her way to meet friends for late-night cocktails.

Do you ever feel "old"? How do you deal with the aging process? Does your age affect your personal style?

Gap cardigan; thrifted J Crew long-sleeved tee; Paige Skyline skinny jeans; Via Spiga bag; Cole Haan loafers; Gap Outlet belt; Nordstrom necklace


  1. Looking at the Parade of Ugly (aka The Grammy Awards) and finding it distasteful isn't a sign you're getting old is more of sign you have common sense and you're not afraid to use it!
    As for what passes for young and hip as opposed to the old and dowdy it's a matter of personal preference. I myself would pass on a night out anytime in favour of a homemade dinner and snuggling with my hubby to watch some cheesy movie.

  2. Well for one thing, you certainly don't look old! You're beautiful!

    And...I end up going to bed around 9 or 10. Eek!

  3. Elissa, not only did I laugh at this post, I know what you're saying. Really. I'm older than every blogger I follow (53), so dealing with age is something I'm intimately familiar with.

    I reached the insight that it's not the number on your driver's license that counts, it's your attitude. I act young and hope to stay that way. A few years ago, I had the exact same reaction you did to a Grammys show: later, I got a subscription to Rolling Stone magazine, became familiar with contemporary musicians and now feel less out-of-the-loop.

    And if Mick Jagger can sing and dance the way he did at his age (67), I can certainly sit on the couch and enjoy young performers. :)

    BTW, your outfit is cute!

  4. love your bag!
    im your new follower will you follow me back please? :)


  5. I felt more old when I truned 25 for sure...sometimes when I get off the treadmill I feel old haha, but the best way to deal with it is to put on a sexy outfit and do your hair! It makes me feel confident and I KNOW that when I was 25, nothing would have made me feel confident! and you look confident I'm still in love with your hair!


  6. Love the bag. I'm not old. So neither are you. We are young and hip and fabulous but not so much young and dumb. We are the perfect age. PLUS stylish and amazing to boot. GO US!~

  7. I realized that I was old when I started not only listening but actively enjoying CBC radio just like my mother and grandfather before me. I think that the ways you are still young are the best ones. Who needs to know anything about teenybopper music when you can still giggle like a school girl!

  8. I'm 32 and already feeling a bit old. Things that used to interest me before just really don't anymore. I suppose it's not a bad thing though. I love your outfit, especially that cardigan. That bag is amazing too!

  9. This post made me LOL once, and definitely make more cheezy grins at my monitor than a usual post would. So yes, that definitely means I can relate - so much so that I didn't even BOTHER to tune into the Grammys!! I like NPR, I hardly listen to mainstream music radio anymore since I feel like 'everything sounds the same', annnnnd I'm starting to get crotchety about some new tech advancements (I'm still closet about my anti-ebook concerns).

    BUT we're still young, but we know better. Your granny/grad student mash-up looks all kinds of comfy and cool. Thank gawd good style has no age limit!

    Look forward to meeting you in ATX for the TX Style Council Conf youngin!! ;)


  10. Oh, GOSH, can I ever relate! I too think that getting *old* is the most terrifying experience, and it hits you all of a sudden, ya know, just BAM...am I getting old?? Is my hair not as glossy and luxurious as it once was? Am I losing my vitality ,my allure...on and on the doubts and sense of vulnerability creep steadily in. But you know what? We are all gonna get older, even the twenty-somethings whose shoes it seems we were in just yesterday! I ride horses that most people of any age would never have the courage to even THINK of getting on, I'm slim, still have my long legs (thank goodness!), feel like I'm 25, I'm a Duranie forever, and I'm not going to let these numbers completely take over my life and steal my joy. That's my goal, and I work at it every time I think these negative thoughts about getting old. You have an eternally youthful vibe! And you are way too sassy to get *old*! Belinda :-)


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