Formerly Hot (or Not)

A new book hot off the press discusses the woes of a forty-year-old mother who has just discovered that she is “formerly hot.” I would love to sympathize with the author however the only time I’ve ever considered myself “hot” was when a hot flash terrorized my body for a few brief minutes.

When I was young I wanted to be cool, but my “pointy blue glasses” and orthopedic saddle shoes designed to correct my young bunions proclaimed that I was a total dork. So I’m not even formerly “cool.” As for “currently cool,” even though my bunions are no longer housed in two tone leather but instead are allowed to roam free in straw mules, they are now about as large as a third world country so it appears that I am still the Duchess of Dork.

This leads me to a difficult question. If I wasn’t cool enough to be formerly cool or hot enough to be formerly hot, what am I? Lukewarm?

My friends describe me as warm and fuzzy. That’s not such a bad description. I guess that means my personality is kind of like a Golden Retriever. Like that overgrown and overfriendly dog, I do like almost everyone and I assume they like me. I’m kind to dogs, cats and most small children. I’m friends with ex-husbands, ex-boyfriends and ex-bosses.

Or maybe the retriever and I share one other characteristic. We’re both big softies. As I approach one of those monumental birthdays we experience every ten years, I am overwhelmed with gratitude at the wonderful friends who have entered my life, and the support I’ve received as I embark on a new career as an author.

So let me proclaim to one and all, I am perfectly fine with the fact that I will soon be…formerly fifty nine.


  1. Joyce Mason on September 21, 2010 at 6:17 pm

    Welcome to Almost Sexagenaria, Cindy. Jump in. The water's fine! Not too hot, not too cool. I can't imagine you as a dork! I consider you one of the cooler people I know … but one things for sure. You've got that "cool saging" thing going that I love so much. Being a few years your senior (adding a year tomorrow), I am in the most creative and fulfilling time of my life. I know you are, too. When we can do what we love, be supported by wonderful friends and family, plus be at peace with all our exes (me, too), what more could we ask for … except for maybe The Millionaire knocking on our door with one of those big checks … but then, I date myself. 🙂 Happy Birthday!

    • Cindy on September 21, 2010 at 7:01 pm

      They don't deliver those big checks anymore? Darn. As far as birthdays, I hope you have the most wonderful day. I'm so grateful you are one of the special people in my life, my very cool slightly older friend.

  2. Kay on September 21, 2010 at 8:05 pm

    As I recall, Vogue was a very cool dance…..and you were a part of this… therefore….you are officially cool! You look fantastic, you always have! I hope you have a Happy Birthday!

  3. Kathy Asay on September 21, 2010 at 8:08 pm

    Cindy, all the best people you know have gone there before you so don't worry about the years. As for hot or cool, it's got to be both if you're now a published author with more books coming and everyone telling you how much they enjoyed reading #1. Like they enjoy you. Enjoy this new and unexpected, wonderful time in your life and have a Happy Birthday. Celebrate you!

    • Cindy on September 22, 2010 at 11:42 pm

      Thanks Kathy. Your encouragement and advice is always appreciated. I’m following in your elegant and gracious path.

  4. Cindy on September 21, 2010 at 8:09 pm

    You know I did look good in that fedora and trenchcoat. But remember my Frankenstein arms?

  5. Melanie on September 21, 2010 at 8:11 pm

    Well, then, birthday wishes to two awesome writers! Is it me? I think saddle shoes were cool and I loved both of my Golden Retrievers. And since I didn't get to have hot flashes…yes, I do believe I missed out on one of life's most notorious gifts…I'd say hot is as hot does. Or is that stupid is as stupid does? I do believe the Hallmark tradition and the books of etiquette say that you now have to begin celebrating daily for each year of your life before your birthday gets here. Wishing you every happiness and that you never sober up.

  6. Cindy on September 21, 2010 at 8:48 pm

    Wonderful felicitations. I do recall that those saddle shoes were quite comfortable. Thanks for the lovely wishes. I celebrate every second of every day.

  7. Jana on September 21, 2010 at 9:16 pm

    You are the youngest "formerly 59 year old" I know! If you were a Golden Retriever I would take you in! Happy Birthday to my funniest and most famous neighbor!

    • Cindy on September 21, 2010 at 10:18 pm

      Well I'm almost as much work as your menagerie. I just shed less.

  8. Madelyn on September 22, 2010 at 8:10 am

    Since I am following close behind you, I truly appreciate your blazing the trail and making it look so attractive and fun!

    • Cindy on September 22, 2010 at 9:21 am

      It just keeps getting better or maybe I'm just getting wiser. But every day the sky is the limit.

  9. Danna on September 22, 2010 at 8:27 am

    You are cool, Cindy. VERY cool. And the birthday? Pish…eat cake and celebrate like a rock star. Think in percentages…60% chance of rain…pretty iffy, right? The sun is shining, you're "topless", it's all good! Happy "iffy" Birthday, my friend!

  10. Jacqueline Seewald on September 22, 2010 at 9:17 am

    I subscribe to the idea that you get better in many ways as you get older. And I love both the title and cover art of your new novel!

    • Cindy on September 22, 2010 at 9:24 am

      Thank you. I know that I'm calmer and enjoy every minute of every day, even when being a new author seems overwhelming, the joy of making new friends makes up for everything. That cover really draws in the readers. Could be the cookie:-)

  11. Guest on September 22, 2010 at 9:31 am

    I'm sorry; growing older as a woman is the pits. I can intellectualize all day long; the reality is that if single, the good ones are gone or want younger women, the workplace imitates the dating place in its hiring policies (or is it the other way around), and keeping healthy and fit is no longer natural but requires dedication and hard work; one week off and it all falls down.

    There are many good aspects such as the benefit of wonderful friends, male and female; the wisdom to be more accepting, forgiving and patient; grandchildren if you are so lucky; and the knowledge that no matter what you do people will have to love the real you because that sexy chick is long gone and can't use her looks to get a tire changed.

  12. Pauline Baird Jones on September 22, 2010 at 9:48 am

    I'll wish you a happy birthday now, but I think you'll have one with or without my wishes, because you have a great attitude and a great sense of humor!

    congrats on the new career, too!

    • Cindy on September 22, 2010 at 12:32 pm

      Thanks Pauline. Living life with humor makes life just so much easier. And truly some of my most bizarre life tales end up being pretty funny in retrospect. So much material, so little time.

  13. Betty Gordon on September 22, 2010 at 11:44 am

    Happy, happy birthday, Cindy. My hubby just turned the Big 60 and it's not so bad. When he turned 40, a friend told him he would soon have to wear glasses and sure enough he had to in about a week…mind over matter?? Anyway, good things come with maturity, or so I'm told.

    Wishes for a great writing career…Betty Gordon

  14. Betty Gordon on September 22, 2010 at 11:54 am

    Happy, happy birthday. Wisdom comes with age, or so they say!

    Good fortune with your writing, Cindy.

    Betty Gordon

    • Cindy on September 22, 2010 at 12:33 pm

      Thanks Betty. I do believe wisdom comes with age, plus we forget the things that annoy us. Tell your hubby happy belated birthday.

  15. Lorraine Powell on September 22, 2010 at 1:30 pm

    Warm beats scalding any day and who doesn't prefer a soft eyed golden retriever to a wild eyed greyhound? Also many things improve with age such as writing ability not to mention personality/humanity! Happy sixth decade birthday, I'm right behind ya. Long live your slow steady enduring life fire!

  16. Marcia Doolin on September 22, 2010 at 6:01 pm

    I can only tell you that you will relish your young 60's with great abandon. I think it is true that the older you get the more free you feel–it is quite liberating to experience being in your 60's when you are a 60's child. If you didn't let go then you can now!! You keep having those hot flashes–think of them as being spark plugs. You are on FIRE Miss Cindy, lukewarm does not apply to you.
    As usual your clever writing has me in stitches. Congrats on your first blog.
    Love you, Marcia

    • Cindy on September 22, 2010 at 10:50 pm

      I’m on fire. I like it. And look at you. You are officially a blogger.

  17. Joyce Scarbrough on September 23, 2010 at 10:35 am

    This may be a cliché, but it's the truth: AGE IS JUST A NUMBER! And since we're word people, we shouldn't pay much attention to those left-brain thingys!

    • Cindy on October 3, 2010 at 9:49 am

      Great comment, Joyce. Those numbers are just a date on a birth certificate. I feel as young as ever!

  18. MStJames on October 3, 2010 at 10:31 am

    That really made me laugh. Took me back to my days in elementary school with the thick glasses and ugly braces. I thought I was going to get "cool" braces like everyone else, but mine had a thick wire, a gold cap over one tooth that needed to be pulled down and turned, and they were really ugly. Kids thought they were being funny when they called me four eyes with the grill. Now kids want to flash a grill. Times change.

    Anyway, here is a present that I stole from a writer I used to know. If you don't want to say how old you are, but don't want to lie, just say you are closer to 60 than 50, (people will automatically think 55 or 56) or if you really want to stretch it, closer to 50 than 40. It is a true answer, so let them draw their own conclusions. By the way, I'm closer to 70 than 60. See most people would take that to say I'm over 65 which is true, but the question remains: "How much over?" On a really good day, I might say I'm closer to 60 than 50.

    • Cindy on October 4, 2010 at 8:22 am

      Hi Morgan. Great tip. BTW, since we've already met, I would have thought you were way closer to 50 than 70. Talk about "still hot."

  19. Ellen Thorp on October 16, 2010 at 11:00 am

    What a great post Cindy! Make me Laugh!! I needed that. Thanks so much for sharing.

    skype ellen_thorp

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