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Seven Squared
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Every year around June I begin to think of myself as a year older than I actually am, in preparation for the 6 month long slide to the next birthday. This brain-training is useful in making sure I’m not caught off-guard on my actual birthday and wake up thinking, “Oh shit! I’m turning 49 today! How the hell did I get so old? And why do my knees feel like they’re 89?”

Instead, I’ve actually been thinking of my age as 49 for a while now, and have gotten used to the idea that I am a mere 365 days away from moving into another decade and have, indeed, already passed into the 50th year of my life. No hyperventilating, no craving surgical or chemical age-reversal (as the man with whom I share my birthday – Donny Osmond – has allegedly done), just two days of birthday celebration and one morning of not having to get up with the dogs at the first streak of pearly dawn in the sky. Although Elmer did bring me a frozen mouse (or maybe it was a mole) as a gift this morning.

In addition to the squeaky clean Mr. Osmond, I share my birthday with Margaret Hamilton, Grace Hopper, Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., Broderick Crawford, Tip O’Neill, Kirk Douglas, Redd Foxx, Dick van Patten, Dina Merrill, John Cassevetes, Buck Henry, Don King, Judi Dench, Beau Bridges, Dick Butkus, Tom Daschle, Michael Dorn, and John Malkovich. Not bad company. Now onward. Next month I’ll start thinking of myself as 50 just to get *that* milestone behind me.

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