Parlor Spider...Step In, Little Fly

Insightful thoughts and/or rants from atop the soapbox from one who wishes to share the "right" opinion with everyone.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Anachronistic, and NOT Happy About It

Moments of clarity are sometimes quite surprising. Oh, it's not that I don't have them often and am surprised when I DO get one, it's just that the unexpectedness of those moments can be shocking. They are also somewhat unnerving when one stops to consider that what he or she held to be true is not necessarily true. In my case, today's sudden revelation had to do with aging. I know I'm getting "up there" to the point that the social Security Administration is about to become an economic force in my life for GIVING rather than TAKING money, but until today, it never really hit me that the gulf between me and others is actually becoming more of a chasm. Unnerving, to say the least. On national "Carry a poem in your pocket" Day, I thought it would be fun to walk around campus distributing poetry samples to people (most of whom I had an acquaintance with). In addition, all the student-athletes with whom I work got one, and I even read The Road Not Taken to a group of basketball players and elaborated on making positive choices (to an admittedly captive audience!). As my usual not-completely-serious self, I would often explain that the decision concerning which poem to select boiled down to the Frost classic or one that described happenings of a "girl from Nantucket." The more I talked about the latter poem(s), the more I realized that NOBODY under 30 understood the humor in what I was saying. Not one of them, male or female, had ever heard of limericks OR this particular risque version that has been widely written. The realization dawned slowly as anyone over 35 or so got the reference, but the others did not: I was actually making a cultural reference to another time and place; moreover, it was a time and place in the distant past. Undaunted, I ran to the ultimate information source (Google) to see what was posted there concerning this poetic form. The first thing I discovered was a question on the "" site that went something like this: "Why don't they ever finish the joke on television? It always starts with 'a girl from Nantucket," but nobody EVER finishes the joke, and I want to know what's going on!" Really? I knew then that all hope was lost. I'd cross the River Styx without the coin for the ferryman, and life was going to go downhill rapidly from this point forward. A cultural curmudgeon, perhaps, but definitely out of touch. damn.


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