This Is The End

The end of 51.

In less than 2 weeks, I will be firmly entrenched in my fifties. I have come to terms with 5o. Not even just to terms, I have embraced 50. I fucking adore 50.

It occurred to me today that the next milestone is 60. Fucking 60. I have no idea how I feel about 60. I mean, other than the fact that I hope I get see 60. So, it’s a pretty broad feeling. I don’t need to think about that right now though, do I? I’m sure 60 and I will see eye to eye when we meet.

I suppose what I will do now is continue to embrace my fifties. A few weeks ago, I wrote about feeling okay with walking out on my deck in a stained bathrobe. Well you guys, I surpassed that today. I was willing, just a few minutes ago, to walk out on my deck wearing a pair of Nightmare Before Christmas pajama bottoms that are over 15 years old. They’re hanging from elastic the way your dime store underwear did after just a few months of wear. I have a Love Is A Battlefield nightshirt on. I also wore a lame ass sweat jacket with a white mesh hood and bright pink and blue stripes on the sleeves. I was a glorious sight to behold.

How many of you did I lose with the ‘dime store’ reference? Fucking babies.

I stood out on my deck in the cold and considered a blog post I wrote the other day. I wrote a silly post about what not to wear after 50 and while I didn’t set the world on fire, my little writing world lit up like a pinball machine. It did better than any other blog post in the history of my blog. It did great on Better After 50 and right now, it’s doing pretty good on The Huffington Post. I’m bemused by this. I was being absurd and silly and really needed a blog post.

It’s been a rough winter. I had a thick drafts folder, which is good, because if it hadn’t been for my drafts, I would have abandoned Rubber Shoes for a little while. I am glad I didn’t.

It feels good to be back, although I’m still struggling. I wrote a silly post poking fun at fashion advice while watching Sherlock and got a tremendous response. I’m left feeling excited and certain that I’ve experienced my last fluke.

I learned recently that I am going to be in Jen Mann’s next anthology called I Still Just Want To Pee Alone. I can’t begin to express how excited and honored I am to be published with so many talented and hilarious women. It also fires up that whole impostor thing. Oh, and I’ll be hitting you all up to buy a copy, so be ready. It’s set to come out in late March.

I’m good, though. The excitement is winning over the anxiety.

I don’t have any real ideas for my next blog post, but I’m not feeling anxious over it. I know it’s going to come.

I’m not all the way back. But I’m better.

Apropos of nothing, I’ve been listening to The Bobs singing Helter Skelter and I’ve completely fallen in love with it.

I’m also never throwing these pajama bottoms away.

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  • Fucking babies, indeed. Dime stores use to rock my world. Enjoy your 50s – it only gets better…

    Oh, and don’t call your post about what not to wear after 50 silly – I really took it to heart and it’s pretty much the best fashion over 50 advice out there. Not absurd at all.

    • Thank you so much! I am THRILLED that so many people connected to it. I was kind of skimming through all the ‘what we should do’ articles and got really annoyed and that was my response.

  • I have hung on to a few clothing items I had before my first was born (13 years ago) and I’ll continue to hang on to them. Hell yeah. I really enjoy reading your blog, Michelle. No worries, you could write about paint peeling and it would still be great reading.

  • Yahoo! Congrats on some well-deserved recognition and success! I personally can’t wait to be in my fifties – I’ve got 5 years to go. If I can stay one step ahead of my neck folds I think it will be awesome. Keep it up girl – your kick-ass
    Love a faithful reader but infrequent commentor…

  • When I turned seventeen an older friend told me “Seventeen will be great. Enjoy it because eighteen sucks.” And damned if he wasn’t right. Years later I realized eighteen sucked because I made it suck. Eighteen could have been as good as seventeen, maybe even better. Something to think about as you get firmly entrenched in the 50’s and even as you face 60.

    Also I work for a library that I think needs a copy of I Still Just Want To Pee Alone in its collection.

  • I just went north of 51 myself yesterday. I can’t say I feel any different than I did the day before. My knee still hurts, I still have to wear my readers, my dime store panties are still hanging on me in weird, lumpy ways, and I still have no dating prospects for next weekend or any weekend for that matter. But I do appreciate a good read from a fellow woman of the “wise(ass) years”…so thank you for continuing to write funny, familiar stuff even if you aren’t sure what you’ll write about next.

  • I won’t call you a baby but entering your 50’s is still not that old! I just found out in antique stores they have a lines of products they call ‘mid century’, and they were made when I was born! About the wardrobe, it is your property you can wear what you want and no one gets hurt.

  • I wouldn’t worry about 60. Holy fuck, how old is Betty White? She’s a goddamned national treasure. I’d be blessed to be half as funny as she is at any age.

  • 50 has passed for me I am now 52 and loving it but I am not one to worry about my age as in my head I am still in my 20’s although at times my body feels more like it is in it’s 80’s but overall 52 is ago age better then not being 52 and dead. Hell who wants to be dead, not me………………

  • 1. You are not a fluke. You’ve been “fluking” for what? 4 years? 5? You have an awesome following…you’re getting published and you’ve been asked to guest blog and people leave lots of comments on your blog and you’re like, my HERO. So, you really need to get that nasty little voice out of your head.

    2. 50 is the new 30.

    3. I’ll definitely buy the book, just post the relevant info when it’s time.

    4. You need to get off the stick and publish your own damn book…I mean it.

  • I so want to be you when I grow up (which is awkward because I AM turning 60 this year)….I am glad you didn’t stop posting cause some days you are my laugh for the day. My laugh out loud that is! ( I am not totally pathetic).
    Yay for the huff post traffic. You totally deserve it!

  • The 50’s was OK. The 60’s was OK. But I tell you the 70’s is the bomb. I can actually take advantage of all the senior citizen perks, without anyone questioning me. Nobody gives me any crap when I walk around with my handy little cane at my side. Nobody rushes me ~~ the cane helps. People hold the door open for me. It’s just too bad that I had to get this much older in order for people to be polite and helpful like they should have been all the time anyway. But for now, I am appreciating it. Also working on my hobbies is no longer considered a waste of time by others. I think they think it keeps this old gal off the street and out of trouble. Love you blog.

  • I’m going to need you to tell Randy the next time you are dressed in your finery on the deck to please snap a pic! I’ll pay cash money for it.
    As for your success being a fluke, sorry to be the one to tell you this….it’s no such thing. You’re a great writer, Michelle. You are funny and fearless and when you write the hard stuff I know I can literally FEEL it. Nope, so not a fluke.
    I’m happy for all your success. I need to take a cue from you and build up a drafts folder but I tend to fly by the seat of my pants when it comes to writing.
    I have a few more years until 50. Three and a few months. I feel about 50 how you feel about 60. I guess I’ll see when I get there.

  • I don’t know if I can say it better than Sandy just did. It’s a rare talent that can be hilarious and dry and witty one minute and deep and soulful and real the next. If you’re a fluke then my goal is to one day be a fluke as well. A thick drafts folder? That sounds both dirty and foreign to me…

  • *sits in the corner sucking her thumb, playing with dollies and blocks, and watching wide-eyed as the grown-ups talk about awesome things; making life work; being fearless (that kinda thing) – and makes notes in crayon. On the wallpaper*

  • 1. I have a pair of flannel pj p ian’s with the entire but blown out. I refuse to throw them away because I love them. So there.
    2. I still own a sweatshirt from when I worked on The Fantasticks at a local theater when I was expecting my first child. He will be 25 next week. I still wear it, as does my 15 year old daughter because she and her theater friends think it is way cool. Double so there!

    And congrats on all the great stuff that is happening for you! That is awesome!

  • I am kind of freaked out that I have clothes older than the bass player and drummer in one of the bands I play with, but what the hell, I still love wearing them. I think you should label your pyjama bottoms as vintage, which is my excuse for wearing things I should have sent to clothing heaven over a decade ago.

  • My parents are 60 and they still both act like they’re about 20 half the time. I, on the other hand, am in my 30’s, and have been accused of acting like I am 5. So remember, age is just a number, and doesn’t obligate you to live your life any certain way! 🙂

  • Hell, I have a tote full of special old clothes that are too fragile to wash & wear (aka garbage). Sometimes I pair my Nightmare pj bottoms with a seam-twisted Spiderman tee, but only if I’m feelin’ sexy. 52 next weekend, and still not willing to give up any butt-ugly comfort clothes. (Wendy? do you live in my apt, cuz we must be soul sisters or something equally close. And if you are here, did you hear me whisper hello to the bottle of white when I reached into the fridge for the Greek yogurt?) Also guilty of peering toward that great horizon I call Sixty…trying to be philosophical/optimistic/spiritual but the only words that come to mind are “HO-LEE FUCK” cuz although my mind is a bumbling, faltering blob lately, I still feel like a kid in many ways. How can this be happening? I think the REAL book on aging hasn’t been written yet, perhaps because it would lead to all of us being committed someplace with very high walls. Or banished to an island! Wouldn’t that be fun? Vote me “on” I’m packin’ a cooler. Wendy, grab that white!

  • I came across your blog by mistake, I loved what you shouldn’t wear in your fifties. As I am now on the other side of 50, I have now, for a few years, said no to things I don’t want to do. Life is easier saying no. I don’t take crap, put up with crap or listen to crap. Life is cleaner with no crap. It’s made me a bit intimidating at work, but that’s ok they leave me alone. I hate small talk. Keep the laughs coming, I look forward to reading more.

  • Oh man, Michelle. Did you hear me whooop whoop when I discovered your blog? I love great writing and funny people, witty, people, intuitive and soulful folks. Just to let you know, I am guilty as hell of trafficking your Over 50 post on my facebook page. Today I got like 50 likes (apropos, oui?) and 25 comments, and get this, 3 global shares. Like across the pond style! Get ready, kiddo. Your star is on the rise. But don’t let your head get so big that you can’t squeeze into your jester hat. I may have to go out and get one, because you know, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Thanks for putting yourself out there, gutsy gal. Signed, Your New Fan in the Twin Cities

    • Thank you so much!!! I already have a big head, but it’s ACTUALLY A BIG HEAD. Not conceited. Not that kind of big head. I don’t think that’s a problem.

      Thank you for sharing, I appreciate it so much! I am so glad you found me!

  • See, and here I am all dressed up for an anniversary party that might be cancelled.

    Congrats on your anthologizing! And on your Huffpo et al success, that’s really awesome.

    I’ve been LAME about blogging lately, on both blogs (dog and writing) and need to pull out of my slump.

  • I’ve begun contemplating 60 lately, and I think I’m ready. I might dye my hair an extra special shade of purple when it happens. Or take up smoking cigars. Can’t decide.

  • I found your blog through Huffington Post, actually. I really enjoyed your humor, so of course I proceeded to mercilessly scour the web for more gems like the “What to wear after 50” article.
    I’m not anywhere near 50–so the dime store reference flew over my head like an overexcited buffet goer (my mom) trying to nab the last samosa–but I could still relate to (most of) the things you write. Pretty impressive!

  • I think 55 needs to be a thing, at least. Make t-shirts that say “I can’t drive 55, but I can rock it!” or “55 is the new Hell Yeah!” For the years 51-54, shirts could say “Looking forward to 55!”

    Your What To Wear post was brilliant on multiple levels. It seems like you still don’t realize that. 🙂

  • I love how, as we get older, we give less of a rats butt about anyone else’s opinion. K would be mortified if she saw how I shoot down to the shops some weekends when I just want to pick up a couple of things – and, to be honest, 10yrs ago I would have been mortified as well but now I couldn’t care less – not showering and changing and putting on a face to run into the shops for a couple of things !!!
    Have the best day and YAY for drafts you can use when you need to !

  • I am jealous of your thick drafts folder. When I need to fall back on writing, I end up plagiarizing emails I wrote while traveling overseas/offending people with photos.

    Oh also from where I stand– which is not just beyond your deck, unfortunately, because I want to see the elastic waist band in action– 51 is lookin’ pretty good.

  • I have to say, January kicked my ass. I’m not normally a depressive person (I run more on the anxiety scale) but the cold, gray BLEH of January liked to have got me. We’ve had a few peeks of spring here in AL, and they have helped me pull through.
    My blog certainly suffered while I was moping, though.

By Michelle