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A Birthday Shag

I admit it. As humiliating as it is to confess, especially to a big ole audience like this one, I’ll just put it out there. Today, I’m forty-three years old. Middle-aged. A little saggier and baggier today than I was yesterday. So, I ought to be able to own just about anything without fear, right?

This one is tougher, though. I’m supposed to know how to do it by now. I’ve had gaggles of boyfriends in my life. Heck, I said ‘I Do’ to two men, NOT at the same time.

Umtpeen opportunities to perfect my technique. Countless attempts to go all the way. At times, practically begging these boys to make me a real woman instead of a groping, clueless girl.

I don’t know how to shag.

It’s the state dance of South Carolina, a whirling, twirling, foot-shuffling vision on the pulsing dance floor. It requires two people, and one of them really needs to know how to lead. Which takes me to my next problem.

I don’t follow well.

So, for most of my life, I have implored various unlucky men to take me and make me a shagger, only to step on their toes, heat-butt them, try to twirl them instead of the other way around, and generally scare them to freaking death. MTM won’t even shag with me.

Is a forty-three year old woman too old to learn to shag? Because, I’d really love to swirl around the dancing space to Stagger Lee, my very favorite shagging song of all time.

Do you have a favorite shag song, Dear Reader? The dance or THE DANCE, doesn’t matter to me which one you mean.


Andrew McCarthy Was Here

In honor of St. Patrick’s Day’s being exactly ONE WEEK before my BIRTHDAY, a repost that’s old enough to be new to all of you. Enjoy some green today, Dear Reader.

I’ll never forget the movie “Pretty in Pink. I saw it multiple times as a giggly fifteen year old girl. I knew Molly Ringwald’s pink prom dress was to die for; Jon Cryer’s pompadour was not as nerdy as we were led to believe; and Andrew McCarthy was a dreamy-eyed boyfriend to be desired by all teenage girls everywhere. Drooling over movie stars was quintessentially teenage.

Fast forward to a March Saturday, 2010. All my teenage dream boats were distant, distant, distant memories, long buried somewhere in my subconscious. I was a happily married, almost forty-one year old woman just a few days shy of her next birthday, and my gift was spending that birthday in New York.

I wandered into the fish shop in Chelsea Market looking for MTM, but my lustful wandering eyes were sucked into the back end of another man, a vision in black ordering sushi. He was all alone. Dreamy-eyes turned around to face me. It was Andrew McCarthy, one of my many teenage heartthrob crushes.

I started giggling uncontrollably. My palms streamed with sweat, and my demeanor became hyperactive and exaggerated. You know, like a teenage girl.

No, I didn’t bother him. Who knows what my disembodied mouth would’ve blurted out to humiliate me FOREVER??? I let him order his sushi in peace, if peace was staring at him with a stupid, starry-eyed look on my face while he waited in line for the cashier, and stalking him from behind a glass window outside the store, where I fled because I didn’t want to look like a blithering idiot. MTM suffered all of this nonsense with an understanding that affirmed – once again – I married the right person.

Andrew was older but the same, rough around the edges but unmistakably him, and he gave me an amazing birthday gift. He made me feel like a teenager again, if only for a few minutes.


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