The Friday Morning Listen: The Sugarcubes – Life’s Too Good (1988)

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“Mark, it’s only a number.”

That was the advice my mom had for me when it seemed like I wasn’t so happy to be turning 40. Oh yeah, I remember that night. We all had dinner up at Hermanos in Concord, me and TheWife™, Mom & Dad, and our friends Ty and Meg. I didn’t really want to be there. The truth is that I never really like to celebrate my birthday. It makes me the center of attention and that’s something I’m never comfortable with. The fact that I was turning 40 made me want to shy away from that attention all the more.

Well, it’s been almost ten years since that day and I’m kind of surprised at how I feel about it. You know how they say that it seems like time speeds up as you get older? That’s sort of true, although I have to say that so much stuff has come to pass over the last decade that the perceived speed really amazes me. When you’re in the middle of it though, it feels more like a “time accordion,” with the good times occupying a split second and the bad times seeming to spread out over years. Yeah, I had a few days that took years, if you know what I mean.

So what I’m surprised about is that that I’m not angry like last time. I’m not dreading it either. Seriously, what will change? I’ll still take those AARP flyers that come in the mail, soak them in gasoline, light up and toss out the back window…just like last week. Life will still be good!

Like a lot of people my age, I am feeling a sense of urgency: urgency to get some things done. Our recent changes are certainly a part of that. There will be more to follow. When I look around at some of the inane crap that people occupy their time with, it’s that that makes me more than a little sad (and I’m not talking only about politics, though it has become InaneCentral™). Part of me wants to shake some sense into them, but mostly it’d be a waste of time.

Mom might have said that 40 was only a number, but she wasn’t implying that you should waste what time you have left. You can bet that I won’t.

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Mark Saleski

Mark Saleski

Mark Saleski is a writer and music obsessive based out of the woods of central New Hampshire. A past contributor to Jazz.com, Blogcritics.org and Salon, he originated several of our weekly features including the Friday Morning Listen, (Cross the) Heartland, WTF! Wednesday, and Sparks Fly on E Street. Follow him on Twitter: @msaleski. Contact Something Else! at reviews@somethingelsereviews.com.
Mark Saleski
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