There are days when I can convince myself that I actually CAN still think like a teen, or at least enough like one to write a novel in that voice. I don’t kid myself: I know I am 40, there is no denying it. But occasionally I allow myself to think that I am, you know, sort of hip. But then something happens. Like I make a pop culture reference to one of my babysitters, only to have them stare at me blankly and say, “Um, I wasn’t born then, actually.” Or I say something that sounds so much like my mother it gives me chills. (See: “It’s not my job to clean up after you,” and “Eat something healthy first,” and “Because I said so, is why,” among others.)
Then I have a moment like last night, when I was watching Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World, the movie with Michael Cera and I just….didn’t get it. I mean, I understood the concept. I’m not that far gone. But the story and the way it was told, all the comic book references….it was like I could hear them going over my head, WHOOSH! Also telling: that I was so distracted by how skinny Michael Cera was to the point that I found myself worrying if he was okay. Now I’m not my mom, I’m my grandmother. (See: “Are you eating enough? Are you sure? I think you need some protein, a sandwich. Let me make you one,” etc.) Granted, Michael Cera is always skinny and pasty, it is part of his appeal. (I loved him in Juno, but really fell for him as George Michael on Arrested Development. If you have not seen that show, you are seriously missing out. Get thee to Netflix, now!) But he looked especially gaunt in this one. Maybe it was all the hats he was wearing or something.
Even that, however, was not as bad as a mistake I made last week which really showed my age. I was writing a tweet and referenced Justin Bieber….and spelled his last name wrong. Which was an honest mistake, but MAN was I taken to task by his fans. Everything from being corrected multiple times, politely (which was fine) to being called a “dumbass” and told to f**k off (and not in the cheery, Cee-lo, singing kind of way, either). Yikes! If I got upset every time people called me Sarah Dressen or Desser I’d be even more of a nervous wreck than I already am. Lesson learned: do not tweet about what you do not know. Or understand. It won’t happen again. I will go to my GRAVE knowing it is Bieber, not Beiber.
In other news, I think I mentioned already that I am currently on my LAST pass of What Happened to Goodbye, and as always, it is bittersweet. On the one hand, I have read it over SO many times that I am kind of sick of it. On the other, though, I know this is my last chance to make changes before I send it on out into the world. It’s weird, knowing that soon it will be a Real Book, out of my hands and control. It’s like leaving my kid at preschool for the first time, zipping up her jacket, making sure she has water bottle, everything she needs. I’m so ready to let it go, but so scared, even as this is the TENTH time around. When I see it in bookstores, or hear about people reading it online, it will be like watching my kid on the preschool playground, hidden where she can’t see me, just hoping she’s doing okay all on her own. Sob. Sniffle! Oh, God, I’m such a mess.
Luckily, that time hasn’t come yet. I still have a few more days to make some final last changes, get everything as close to Just Right as I can. I don’t want to misspell anyone’s name, after all. We know how THAT ends.
Have a good night, everyone!