I have a birthday next month. It's not a big one. I had a big one nine years ago. I have an even bigger one next year.
At this particular age, I view birthdays as being "had," not as being "celebrated." Even so, my mother informed me this week--more than a year in advance--that she and my sisters plan to throw me a party in 2011. The unspoken assumption was that I'd attend.
I politely declined. I told her I'd rather take a raincheck. One that could be used, say, forty years from now.
So, let me take this moment to cordially invite all of you to my ninetieth birthday party! Please save the date--October 25, 2051.
No need to RSVP. It's likely I won't know if you're there or not. I may not know where I am either, but I plan to have one bodacious good time.
If you don't recognize me, just look for the four-foot-tall, prune-faced woman in the strapless red dress and eff-me heels. Or else in a floral shift and bunny slippers. I'm ninety. I'll wear whatever I damn well want, thank you.
No gifts, please. Instead, I ask that all guests purchase Xeroxed copies of one of my unpublished manuscripts. These will be personally signed by the author, of course, although I may need some assistance with the inscriptions. ("What was your name again, honey? Oh, yes, you're one of my children, aren't you? Uh-huh. And what is my name?")
I can't spend my entire evening signing autographs though. I will be too busy doing tequila shots. At ninety, I figure I can rekindle all those bad behaviors I left behind long ago in my wayward youth. If someone passes a doobie, I'll probably take a hit or two.
I will eat an entire bowl of dill pickle potato chips and two pieces of chocolate cake for dinner. No one will blink an eye. If anyone dares to, I will growl, "What the hell's wrong with you, sonny? Quit staring and go get me another tequila shot!"
I will kiss all the babies and all the good-looking men in the crowd. I may invite the hottest guy there back to my private room--in the nursing home--later.
Who knew there was so much to look forward to, in our golden years?
If you want in on the festivities, please leave your name in the comments section. My mom's already compiling the invitation list. She does like to plan ahead. She promises to bring enough tequila for everyone. But the dill pickle potato chips? Those are mine, and I'm not sharing. I'll be ninety, and I shouldn't be expected to share with anyone.
Bring your own damn chips.
Wow, ninety is so totally liberating.
And I bet I'll look great in that strapless red dress and a pair of bunny slippers.