Cory Frye Is Not 37


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I'm at that age where you look best sideways.

That was the initial headline for this, my triumphant return to the blogorrhea. (Alert what remains of the press!) Sorry for the hiatus, but things ’n’ stuff surfaced, and honestly, I’ve been gettin’ it regular elsewhere — for a spot of copper, too, which is nice. There is an entry sitting in my drafts folder, resplendent in September’s cobwebs, but right now I’m satisfied with its silence, unless one of you tight-lipped shitbricks sends me a lucrative contract for a “Wrare Wrazz” collection, for which the market clamors.

Last Wednesday I turned 37. Thanks, but <lie>no gifts are necessary.</lie> What I had in mind for this was a quasi-earnest This American Life-ish rumination on the passing of another year and my continuing descent into biological autumn (Halp! Someone greased my back 30s!), but instead I merely gallivanted, noshed some cake, stripped a present or two (part of being an adult in the post-bop Millennium is receiving gift certificates instead of tangible goods), swallowed some cold gold, and let the nonexistent milestone pass with nary a hint of hoopla.

Turns out I didn’t have much to say about 37, except that it feels like a wearier 27. The main difference, I s’pose, is that I’m no longer compelled to skulk about hamlets bellerin’ my snockered flytrap loose, but that welcome development came with turning 30, an age at which you magically calm down. I know, I know — in your teens and twenties you make a big show out of Not Caring by proclaiming it all the time to anyone who might listen or straddle your unclad lap, but in your 30s you stop saying it and actually live it. At least, that’s been my experience: tithing for all the bullshit I swung in my younger, self-conscious skin. Yeah, I do like heavy metal, actually, and I was only pretending to laugh at Air Supply. I’d never been to paradise, but I’d finally booked a trip to Me. (Still hate that one, though.)

So as I get older, I become more and more amused at how much importance we as a culture fearfully place on youth. It’s been ridiculous for eons (though I don’t recall anyone caring much about my generation’s perspective on anything), but in the last ten years we’ve become dangerously obsessed with and almost servile to this notion, like if we don’t stroke some teenage ego, we’ll be Left Behind. What a frightening prospect, right? If we don’t slip yet another demographic under the microscope and respond favorably to its every whim, we as a civilization are doomed, because only they know how to operate the Internet, which, as I’m sure you’ll recall, was developed in 2002 by a group of Denver ninth-graders for a science fair. That it came just three months after seven-year-old Davey Poobah built the first computer will confound historians until historians are finally christened New Pimps of the Old School. So maybe if we kowtow to our overlords now and kiss their high-heeled Chucks, they’ll remember us when it’s time to anoint the With Its. Meanwhile, they could teach us how to activate this black contraption that goes whirrrrrrrrr so we can finally log on to the cybersuperexpressway and send one of them electric-mail thingamajigs we read so much about in the newspaper.

It’s a big deal somehow that the target-pocket squirrels have abandoned Facebook for Myspace or whatever fleeting social network has captured their fancy until it captures ours and that Twitter so hella bores them now and that they spend oodles of their leisure time texting, chatting, downloading, surfing, slanging, Googling, consulting Wikipedia/Wookieepedia/Wackadoopedia for term papers on Hollywood Undead [NOTE TO SELF: Verify that Hollywood Undead still matter] and, uh, why the fuck is any of this important again?

Oh, that’s right: being young makes you relevant! And if we can successfully communicate with you on some skewed semblance of your level, why, that makes us relevant too! We’re totally on your side, dudes! Look at those It-Not-Getters over there at the mall-skater-shop coffeebar, dawg; ohshit, OMG, they’re all, like, “Whaaaaaat?” We’re Team Jacob, motherfuckers! (LMAO…I’m a grown man with graying drapes saying “motherfuckers.” I am so not your dad’s blogger, homes. [NOTE TO SELF: Ask a 12-year-old if his/her peeps still say “homes.” Or “peeps.” “Motherfucker” is timeless, a vernacular perennial.)

Let’s face it: it’s the folly and prerogative of every generation in its tight-fleshed flower to assume that youth has never truly been lived until Them. But why should we fading fools validate that horseshit with such groveling, pandering acquiescence? Aren’t we old enough to know better?

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