Living Life in Reverse | HumorOutcasts

Living Life in Reverse

February 17, 2017

I never do anything the normal way if I can avoid it. This includes living my life in the right order.

What some of us looked like in the old days

I was born on the leading edge of the Boomer generation. I came of age in an exciting time. My generation protested and demonstrated against racial discrimination, the Vietnam War, and the subjugation of women. We studied ecology and warned people to protect the earth. We even went overboard, declaring, “Turn on, tune in, drop out.” Reefers were passed around at wine and cheese parties, with the wine served in paper cups. New forms of addictive drugs were developed and sold. The more reckless among us dropped Acid and hoped they would survive with their brains intact. Transcendental Meditation became a fad. Brassieres were burned, boys and men grew long hair and beards. Women and girls grew long hair, too, including me. My hair is thick and coarse and it grows at the speed of light. Growing it so long I could almost sit on it was easy.

Speaking of going overboard, there was also easy, open sex. This was hard for those of us who were still reeling from strong religious upbringings. It was like being a starving person with Celiac Disease who is locked in a room with 200 loaves of bread. It made you envy your friends who could be “spiritual” and wild at the same time without a twang of guilt.

Although I eagerly adopted a hippie look and a somewhat broader outlook than the one I had been raised with, I didn’t take part in any campus demonstrations, although there was plenty to demonstrate about. I was busy studying music and theater, getting my head together and trying to jumpstart an operatic singing career.

Fast forward to the year 2016. I was now a senior citizen, complete with AARP membership, senior discounts, arthritic knees, doctor visits and friends who worried about me, even when there was no need to worry. Suddenly, a loony guy who, up until now, had been only known as a wealthy, obnoxious, egotistical real estate developer was the Republican candidate for President of the United States. The loony guy proudly shouted his racism, xenophobia, misogyny and whatever other dangerous ideas came into his head.

In other words, we were handed the Mother of All Causes.

At age 70, I suddenly became what I could have been at age 21: a protestor. I signed a gazillion online petitions and gave a lot of contributions, which were, by necessity, small. I am not wealthy, and I would make a terrible bank robber.

When the loony guy was declared President, even though he didn’t win the popular vote, I geared myself to escalate the protesting – after I recovered from being sick over the whole mess.

So here I am, still signing online petitions, still giving small amounts of money, sending postcards, knitting “pussy hats” and trying to talk myself into calling members of Congress, which is something I have a half-phobia against (don’t ask me why). The only reason I didn’t join the women’s march was that I knew I wouldn’t last more than about 30 minutes because: (1) I have arthritic knees (see above); and (2) we older ladies need accessible bathrooms, which can be hard to find in New York City. On the other hand, I can yell as loud as I ever could, and I can certainly sing loud, so when the next opportunity to march comes, maybe I’ll go there and stay as long as possible.

Those 30 minutes might count for something.

Kathy Minicozzi

Kathy Minicozzi is an opera singer turned aspiring writer, who lives somewhere in New York City. In other words, she's weird, but harmless. She is the author of "Opera for People Who Don't Like It," in which she turns the world of opera and its performers upside down while, at the same time, making it understandable to non-opera lovers and making everyone laugh.

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11 Responses to Living Life in Reverse

  1. February 21, 2017 at 7:49 am

    You go, girl. Better late than never on the protesting!

  2. February 20, 2017 at 3:58 pm

    Yeah…how cruel is life for us Baby Boomers. That bathroom thing is what gets me. But I’ve learned to be as dehydrated as possible. With that in mind, I actually went to the DC March. It was scary, but I”m happy to say nothing bad happened, in so many ways. Great post, Kath!

    • February 20, 2017 at 11:19 pm

      Thank you. Since I seem to be catching up with my youth right now, I might join the next anti-Trump(ism) demonstration here in New York, and hope someone thinks to set up some Port-A-Potties.

      I wonder what I’d look like with long gray hair and beads …

  3. Bill Y "The Legend" Ledden
    February 18, 2017 at 8:35 am

    This is conclusive proof that The Legend was born in the wrong generation.

    • February 18, 2017 at 7:17 pm

      We Boomers shook the world, both for better and for worse. I like to think it was mostly for better. 🙂

  4. Bill Spencer
    February 18, 2017 at 6:20 am

    Methinks it’s good the lady doth protest so much.

    • February 18, 2017 at 7:16 pm

      The lady thinks so, too. It’s a dirty job, but someone has to do it! 😀

  5. February 17, 2017 at 10:16 pm

    I totally get your calling-Congress phobia. I was able to overcome mine by resorting to Five Calls.

    You plug in your zipcode and they basically do everything for you — they tell you who to call and give you the number and explain why you’re calling that representative and give you a brief script.

    Check it out.

    • February 17, 2017 at 11:41 pm

      Thanks. I’ll check that out.

  6. February 17, 2017 at 9:51 pm

    I read “A Farewell to Arms” chapter-by-chapter in reverse. Does that count?

    • February 17, 2017 at 11:42 pm

      No, but congratulations. That’s quite a feat. 😉

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