Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Rethinking The 21st Century

Yesterday was a dark and gloomy night. All day long.

I was feeling pretty dang sorry for myself, worked up a nauseous tummy over some work stuff and some financial stuff and the other things that tend to give grown-ups heartburn and headaches. Then my girls brought me this:

And I remembered I have this:

And that my husband set up this:
So I backpedaled my gender role opinions about 50 years or more. (This pedaling and clothes-pinning together counted as a workout, if any Mrs. G 5K friends are reading.)

Do you ever want to turn back the clock? And not just to your 20-something complexion? I mean, remember the time when you didn't worry about sun damage but about whether you'd remembered to rotisserie your swimsuit self regularly? In those days, the worries would add up to: one-piece or two-piece?

So, further back, waa-aay further back, let's fly backwards around the Earth ala Super(wo)man, and pretend we remember a time when bonnets shielded us from the nastiness of freckles and suntans and little laugh lines around our eyes. Remember how it was scandalous to show our ears or ankles?

In that time, mostly researched through copious reading of Laura Ingalls Wilder, a woman's biggest worries must not have included any version of a rat race. Sure, there were the pesky little problems of climate-dependent income and lack of vaccinations. But bear with me while I romanticize a simpler time, would you?

Better for our purposes than pioneer times, maybe, is the era of my favorite linens: the 1940s and 1950s. Oh, yeah. Electricity and everything. But still a simpler time by virtue of me not having been there. As I snap out my damp linens and blue jeans and clip them to the line (thank you, EGE, for installing my whirligig clothesline) I pretend I am not pulled in dozens of directions. I pretend I live in the moment. And I pretend I don't have three phone lines and more careers than can be counted on one hand.

My kids spend their summer days reading "McGuffey's Eclectic Series" and "Little Women" and they play with dolls until they're 13. There's certainly no such book as "The American Girl's Guide to Your Changing Body." Gasoline is still leaded and well under $1 a gallon, but we don't need a second car because I grow all of our own food and use my husband's car on weekend for my canasta game. (What is canasta? Anyone?)

I think I'll stay home from town today and hang more clothes on the line.


Misty said...

it sounds dreamy and perfect, to me! honestly... That book is HORRIBLY Scarring...

Agent K said...

Just dreamy daaahhling. Dreamy.

I thought the in-game was Bridge.

I am off to TKD. Whoohoo! Why can't kids just play baseball in the street like they used to?

Ei said...

Canasta rocks. I wish I knew someone else who knew how to play. I miss my grandma now.