Sometimes, it’s hard to believe that sweatshirts in my closet and memories from “not that long ago” are actually more than 20 years old. Grandma was right when she said the days were long and the years, oh-so short.
“Mommy,” he says, “how old will you be when I’m 40?”
“80,” I say, hoping I’ll celebrate 80 and more. Wondering about Heaven and Earth and dying and living. Wondering about the years and the moments, and why he’s asking how old I’ll be. Does he already realize that I’m older than his friends’ moms?
When I was three, I was a Toilet Paper Queen with a pillow shield and a penis sword, although I’m sure that’s not what I meant at the time. Who knows though, I mean Penis Envy is a thing, right?
Later, at eight, I told my dad that I wanted to be a lawyer. Clarence Darrow – defending the innocent who were put in jail accidentally (this was before DNA tests were used in case you were wondering how old I really am).
(I always wanted to be a writer)
“Please let them cancel,” I thought. As my mom hung up the phone, all I wanted was for her to tell me that Jodi and Julie’s mom had changed her mind. That I wouldn’t have to babysit that night. I hoped that somebody’s mom, my own, maybe, would realize that I was utterly incompetent.
I’d recently earned my Red Cross badge which meant that I was an official babysitter at 11. The two girls who lived up the hill were cooler than I was. Jodi, the older of the two, was in my brother’s grade and a mere 18 months younger than I was. I was much more concerned about surviving the evening and being liked by the girls than I was being in charge, and so when I heard “Please let us stay up! We promise to not tell our mom!” I listened, and let them stay up. The whopping $1/hour I made wasn’t worth a fight.
Of course, the girls told their mother, and the next time I went, her stressed-out, over-hair-sprayed head and too-red lips said with a stiff smile “The girls told me that you let them stay up past their bedtime last time. Please don’t do that again.” I totally did it again, pretty much every time I watched them. She paid me $1/hour after all.
Each day, I’d ride my bike to and from the country club to carry around rich lazy dudes’ golf clubs. I remember some of the bags weighed a ton, were full of extra shoes, a million spare balls, etc. When we weren’t “on a loop” (technical caddy term you see), we played cards in the caddy shack. I was the only girl, which was awesome and scary.
I never did find a good way to ask the golfers if they’d like me to wash their balls.
Later in high school, I worked at Kentucky Fried Chicken. Talk about nasty. Once, I dropped an entire tray of chicken on the greasy slimy floor, and my boss had me serve it up anyway *shudder.*
Once you got past the disgusting brown polyester uniforms and always smelling like chicken, it was a seriously fun job. Pretty much everybody who worked there was around the same age, we all went to the same high school and often times, at night, work was like a party.
We’d answer the phone saying “Kenfucky Tried Chicken” really fast. At the registers, we’d say “How! Hi are you?” It’s amazing how many people didn’t catch it.
I dated two of the guys who worked there and am friends with both of them on Facebook today. Plus, I know how to make biscuits from scratch and I know that sometimes, there are tiny feathers on chicken wings.
I drove limos. Billy Idol wanted to sex me. Maybe I should have, but, as sexy as his lips and his accent are, it’s likely that I’d have wanted more from him than he’d have been willing to give, and been disappointed. Plus, ew.
I got a career in marketing.
I worked at Colorado Free University, and it was wonderful and terrible. The boss ended up getting stabbed by a girl in his apartment, and I wasn’t surprised. Maybe that’s enough about that.
I later took a job at The Roofing Institute, and went from answering the phones to being their marketing director. From there, I worked at several places, including Telecom in the 90’s when candy and soda was free, and beer came each Friday afternoon as if by accident.
The most significant place I worked was probably Genesys Conferencing, back in their glory days (before being bought). Because of that job, I was able to travel to Greece, England, Sweden and France. That job changed my world, in all of the best ways.
It’s the job that brought me from Denver to DC, which is where I met my husband and had my son.
I was a career woman, and always thought I’d put my son in daycare at three months, which is what my friends did.
Instead, I put my career on hold once Tucker was born. I stayed at home with him for three+ years, and now work part-time.
Somewhere between making $1/hour and today, I realized that money doesn’t matter as much as I thought that it did. I’d rather hang out with this little dude who is suddenly seven.
This has been a Finish the Sentence Friday post, that I only had a few minutes to write. It’s the week of “Finish the Sentence You Missed,” which when I thought of it, was of course brilliant until I realized I don’t miss sentences because I can’t. BUT!!! I’ve missed writing for Dana and Bev’s amazing “Who I Am” series, and so I give this one to the whole “Jobs and Careers” month of theirs.
Writers and bloggers, feel free to link with the sentences you’ve missed.