Anticipation: Keeping Me Waiting (to be Carly Simon Cool)
Sioux Roslawski’s blog post (read it HERE) stirred up a lot of memories. She talked about Carly Simon’s memoir, “Boys in the Trees,” and about Cat Stevens, James Taylor…you get the drift. In my comment on Sioux’s blog I told her I didn’t know whether to kiss her or strangle her, because it’s amazing how songs take us back.
When the familiar chords and lyrics of Anticipation materialize in my brain I’m eleven again—tall for my age, awkward, boobs struggling to hatch through the baby fat, dreams of being a grownup daily on my mind. I wished desperately to be sixteen, because as everyone knows, sixteen is all grown up. A girl can drive at sixteen and date at sixteen. A girl will be oh-so-sophisticated at sixteen and pretty, with clear skin and a shape like Sunset Malibu Barbie. She might even be transformed to look like Marcia, Marcia, Marcia, God willing, brown eyes turned blue and bushy brown hair straightened to sleek blonde glass by the magic of sixteen. And surely my figure would follow suit and melt off its unfortunate lumpiness. Wouldn’t it? Well, wouldn’t it?
I saved my allowance and asked my dad to drive me to the record store so I could buy the album. My excitement for “Carly Simon/Anticipation” rivaled my purchase of “The Partridge Family Album,” the release of which left me breathless. My adoration of David Cassidy as top idol was immovable, so Carly Simon was no threat to David, but she stood for other things that proved more enduring—the sure knowledge that a woman could be sexy and talented and in charge of her life all at the same time; that she could have less than perfect features and still be beautiful and strong. Compelling. Interesting.
My first thoughts upon seeing the album cover were that I wanted my legs to be long and lean like hers so they might one day fill out boots as hers did, and that Carly had forgotten to wear a slip, bless her heart. Grandma might have been proud of that observation but not of the thoughts that followed, which involved my desperate desire to be as casually cool as Carly Simon appeared to be on that album cover. She wasn’t afraid to stand tall and thwart convention. Her skirt was see-through, for God’s sake!
Sixteen came soon enough, and I learned that while age brings experience, sophistication is not guaranteed. I’m fifty-five and still wondering if I’ll ever grow up, and I gave up on sophistication long ago dahling. Some days I ponder what it might be like to be that kind of Carly-cool, but the opportunity for that passed me by long ago. Sixteen turned to eighteen, turned to twenty-one, and then one day I woke up and cool was no longer an option. I was too busy shuttling kids around, working, building my life and my marriage. All of that is a different kind of wonderful, and I don’t regret those choices. But it’s in my mind that one day, when I’ve grown much older and way cooler than I am now, I’ll don heeled boots and a calf-length gypsy skirt of translucent silk—purple, of course—without the benefit of a slip. I shall walk in public dressed just so, singing Carly Simon songs at the top of my lungs, scandalizing my children and grandchildren. I will leave them all wondering, “What’s gotten into her? And, dear God, what’s she going to do next?”
What song or songs bring you back to your childhood? Which performer was the epitome of cool for you?
Don’t forget to leave a comment! I’m still taking names for the giveaway, five signed copies of Love to Believe. Just leave a comment for your name to be added for the drawing. I’m announcing winners here on Saturday, January 30th, to coincide with the release day. And to celebrate Valentine’s Day, Love Built to Last, eBook version, is only 99-cents through February 15th at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
Have a great day. See you Friday for Observations from the Tub!
UPDATE: The eBook version of Love to Believe is available to pre-order now at Amazon!
Romance is good for your heart! To purchase your copy of Love Built to Last in eBook or Print, go to Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Black Opal Books, Kobo, or AllRomance. Book #2, Love to Believe, will be available for purchase January 30, 2016!
In need of a professional editor? Please visit me at Ricard Writing & Editing for details regarding services and rates.