A very rare fifth post on this Thursday, and perhaps my last until Monday -- it looks like a busy weekend. Our first retreat with this year's All Saints confirmation class runs Saturday through Sunday, and that will keep me very occupied. At what point will I tire of spending the night on a floor in a sleeping bag, listening to the sounds of snoring boys? When will I tire of trying to be a vegan while we pump the kids full of hot dogs and pizza? At the least, I think I need to buy an air mattress and pack some snacks; after all these years, my back muscles are getting a little less resilient.
On the subject of men and aging, a friend of mine told me a wonderful story yesterday. With his permission, I repeat it. My buddy "Sean" is 39, just as I am, and single. He goes to a Starbucks a few miles from here almost every day, and in recent weeks had been smitten with a very attractive, outgoing young barista there. She's a Citrus College student and is about 19. For his (our) age, Sean is a handsome fellow; we originally met at the gym.
In any event, Sean and his young barista had been getting friendlier and friendlier, and Sean had been thinking of asking her out. (He didn't tell me this beforehand, knowing my strong feelings about older men/younger women relationships.) In any event, on Tuesday afternoon, the pretty barista asked Sean a question after taking his order.
Barista: "Uh, can I ask you a personal question?" (Sean told me he was "stoked" when he heard this, thinking she might be getting ready to make the first move.)
Barista: "Are you single?"
Sean (now sure the gal is interested, and getting very excited): "Yes, sure am!"
Barista: "Well, I know this is weird, but you seem really great and I really want to introduce you to my mother. She's really awesome, and I think you two would be perfect together."
Sean confessed this to me, and was more rueful and chagrined than devastated. I gave him a very hard time, of course, laced with compassion and humor. Until Tuesday, it hadn't been driven home to him how younger women (mostly) see guys our age. But he's starting to get that we are not as we were, and that's not only not a bad thing, it's pretty awesome. Sean says the barista gave him her mother's number, and he's considering calling. (She's prepared her mom for the possible call.) I hope he does at least give it a chance, and I'm hoping that this little episode has ended his fantasy of eternal youth once and for all!
In any event, I've heard similar stories before (why do I think this scenario was in some sitcom, once?), but never from someone so close to me. And since like many 39 year-olds I've been ruminating a lot on getting older lately (and writing a lot about age-disparate relationships), this anecdote came along at just the right time.