Living my life…

I don’t watch that much TV…maybe for a bit before I go to sleep.  But no more than that.  And I don’t know why, but my biggest fear had (or rather has) always been to become involved with someone who just planted me on a couch to watch TV with him every night.  I’ve been dating 20+ years and I have to say that only happened to me once…and fortunately that relationship ended quickly once that habit started.

I mean, don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind watching something together occasionally, but I hate for that to be ALL we do together.  I imagine myself growing fat while sitting on a couch, watching the world go by through my window.  And for all of you who find a night home with your spouse/significant other to be enough, I am not knocking you…I can just not imagine my life becoming that.  And that’s ok.

As a child, my parents used to meet in the living room for drinks at the end of the day where they would play backgammon for a few hours before my mother served them dinner.  When we were young, we’d have to go to bed before dinner was served because my father did not eat with the children, we ate earlier while my mother read to us.  When we were older, we were just “out” until we’d come home and go to bed…at that point not interested in eating with my father either.  Maybe because we were never made “part” of that daily tradition, I was never able to imagine it for myself.

I have met so many men who thought they were warning me that they were not the 9-5 types, so if that’s what I’m looking for…blah, blah, blah!  I wish I could explain (to the whole world!) that I don’t like the 9-5 types…nothing would bore me more than even the prospect of having to put my children/dog/day to bed, cook dinner for my husband and expect nothing more out of everyday than to expect him to just watch TV with me on the couch…as I went to watching life pass me by through the window.

My father was very much into Broadway shows when we were young and he always forced us to listen to the soundtracks on the communal stereo system.  And one of them always intrigued me, called Cabaret…then it was starring Liza Minelli and Joel Grey (if you don’t know it, watch her perform) and maybe some of you may have seen it more recently with Neil Patrick Harris or Alan Cummings.  Anyway, there is this great song in the show with lyrics to it that used to make me cry that went like this:

I used to have a girlfriend
known as Elsie
With whom I shared
Four sordid rooms in Chelsea
 She wasn’t what you’d call
A blushing flower…
As a matter of fact
She rented by the hour.
The day she died the neighbors
came to snicker:
“Well, that’s what comes
from too much pills and liquor.”
 But when I saw her laid out like a Queen
She was the happiest…corpse…
I’d ever seen.
 I think of Elsie to this very day.
I’d remember how she turned to me and said:
“What good is sitting all alone in your room?
Come hear the music play.
Life is a Cabaret, old chum,
Come to the Cabaret.”
And as for me,
I made up my mind back in Chelsea,
When I go, I’m going like Elsie.
So I guess I can say, that when I was young and living in Brooklyn,  I made my mind up that when I go, I’m going out like Elsie too!  Here is to life…and living it!  No more sitting at home and watching the world go by!  Here is to setting limits on my work day so that I have the energy at the end of the day to meet friends and go out and do things and continue to see the world.
I can tell you that when I die, I will NOT have any regrets and will never be able to say, “I wish I had done that.”

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