June 16th, 2002

JOY

Owen Gregor: 8lb., 20-1/2in.

I just checked my mail on the way in from a very un-crazy night hanging out at my brother's eating kebabs, watching TV and playing Wetrix on the increasingly obsolete Dreamcast. It was a welcome change from Friday night, which by all accounts was crazy. When I woke up at 12:30 this afternoon, it took me ten minutes to remember that I did in fact go to a party after Bob, Mickey, my brother and I left the Cowboy.

Anyway, the mail. In the mail was an announcement note and a photograph of my friends' newborn. I knew what it was immediately on seeing the shape of the envelope, as my brother and his fiancee had received one and showed it to me earlier. I was complimented to have gotten one, as the parents are more my brothers friends (more specifically, the father is my brother's fraternity brother) than they are mine.

I opened the card, looked at the photograph and beamed with a empathetic pride. I thought for a moment about how this is the second photograph of a friend's child I have in my apartment (the first being the all-time classic Christmas picture of frockazulu's boys), and how many weddings I have attended recently and will attend in the near future. I thought that I felt old. Then I realized that I don't feel old, but that I guess I'm supposed to feel old. It's not enough that my apartment is decorated like a comic book and that I still party hard enough to lose some time, or that I have married friends with kids and am perfectly content spending a Saturday night on the couch watching movies from time to time. At this point I feel neither old nor young, but at the same time feel both.

More often than not, whenever a landmark of life happens, be it the 25-year-old insurance break, to not wanting to crash on the floor, to seeing friends marry and do their part in peopling the earth, someone will say, "man I feel old". Do you really? I honestly don't miss crashing on the floor. I like seeing my friends get married. Spending a night in can be refreshing.

I couldn't be happier for my friends who have the new baby. I can't imagine a sweeter thing to happen to better people. I know they are going to be generous and loving parents. If getting old is going to feel as warm and fulfilling as opening that card has been, I'd like to feel old more often.
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