Thank Goodness I Don’t Look Like Keith Richards Yet

I am finding that old age creeps up on you. You don’t just wake up one day and realize, “I’m old as schnizzle.” It’s more like a series of moments that all add up to the aging process. Thank goodness you don’t wake up one day looking like Keith Richards after a hard night of booze and cigarettes, because I think the shock would be too much.

“WTF?! I’m only 30!”

I’m right there, though, right on the precipice of forthcoming elderhood (my membership to the Stones is still pending).

Take Monday, for example. My much-younger colleagues and I were exchanging weekend stories, and theirs were…muchly much more colorful. They went out to a club on Friday! Then they went to another club! They went hiking early the next morning, then they went bowling at midnight! They stayed out till two AM! They slept until noon and then played video games all day!

What the hell? When did I get so old that I’m tired just hearing about it?

My weekend, in exchange, sounded like an article from Lame Retiree Monthly. I don’t know what’s worse, the level of boredom my weekends entail, or that I so look forward to their uneventful nature. I’m finding the longer I work two jobs, the more I just want to do absolutely nothing on the weekends.

Truth be told though, I’ve never been much of an all-nighter, even in my days of youth and fury. I’d go out maybe once a month, usually to a pub where I’d play darts or chat with my girlfriends. Not one to get wild and crazy, I think I went out dancing maybe five times in my entire twenties. I did a lot of homework during this time.  So maybe I was born old.

And now? I go have crazy fun and stay out that late, maybe once a year? Or when I’m on vacation? Maybe?

The funny thing about this situation is that when I do chance to go out on the town, I have a better time than I did when I was young. And I do this sober. I don’t understand it either. I think you try harder to have fun when you know liquor is never going to be involved again, because otherwise staying sober sounds pretty effing bleak. Sometimes I just try to out-weird everyone else around me, which is pretty entertaining.

Anyway, what was I saying? Oh yes. It’s not like I never want to go out and do things; there’s plenty I’d love to go do! It’s just…none of that stuff is here. For instance, I’d love to dance along the edge of the Seine at midnight in a sequined gown. I’d love to go to the Roman cinema to catch the late showing of a Fellini film. I’d love to go to the theater on Broadway and then grab a coffee afterward.

Southern California nightlife is really lacking, in my opinion. Let’s go to the bar and get wasted! Let’s go to the club, dance, get wasted, then get venereal disease from a random stranger! Seriously, there’s not a whole lot else to do here, unless you’re interested in skinny-dipping in the freezing ocean and then getting arrested for indecent exposure, which I am so not into anymore.

Plus, you know, I have to be at work on Monday, and it takes at least two days for me to recover from a late night.

Maybe I just don’t run in the right circles. Perhaps there’s an underbelly of cultural nightlife in L.A. that is members-only, like the Masons or MENSA. I’d be happy to be wrong about this.

However, seeing as L.A. is home to the cast of The Hills, I’m thinking I’m not wrong.

Ah, those bastions of refinement and intellect.


Photo SourcePhoto Source 2
Adventure Into Domesticland


  • Ericamos

    Nope, not wrong. It sucks here. Every once and a while, I’ll get invited to some art show, but that always ends with, “let’s go to the bar down the street and get wasted.”

  • winopants

    The bar culture is annoying. Its “how many drinks can we pack in before last call.” The only real fun I ever had going out was on vacation, especially Costa Rica. I was non drinking at the time and we’d stay out dancing till 5 am. No way could I have had the energy to do that if I’d been drinking!
    Going out scene in norcal is pretty meh too. We make our own parties when we need entertainment

  • SarcasticNinja

    As someone who lives where warm weather is a myth, I think there are some perks to the Southern California lifestyle. You could go dancing in a sequined gown by the Pacific? Moonlit windsurfing? And hearing the orchestra at the Disney Solar Death Ray Hall must be neat!

    But then, I am also a hermit who stays home most weekends, so I can’t really talk about nightlife.

    • Natalie the Singingfool

      Oh yes, don’t get me wrong, there are certainly benefits to living where it’s mostly pretty gorgeous as far as weather is concerned, only nightlife isn’t one of them. You could wear a sequined bikini at the beach during daytime hours, but then that means you’d have to wear a bikini. Ick. It’s just as well, I do enjoy reading at home a lot more than I probably should. After all, old age is beckoning…

  • Lindsey

    It’s funny, having never been to L.A. (or California at all, really) I’ve always imagined it’s a non-stop cultural feast for the senses, with starlets on every corner and people dancing in the street in perfectly-choreographed unison.


    I’ve always been a homebody at heart, too, and I believe that having adequate bonding time with one’s couch is vital to one’s emotional health. Going out every once in a while’s enough for me. Too much socializing is exhausting for the socially awkward and introverted.

    • Natalie the Singingfool

      There are definitely cool things to do during the daytime, like the touristy Hollywood thing which is still fun even if you live here, beachy activities and museums – for some reason though, nighttime seems to shut down all the fun things (at least in my definition of fun) to do. For one thing, L.A. shuts down earlier than other parts of the world. Places are open MAX till two, and usually they’re only skeezy bars/clubs.
      And I agree with your couch assessment. I have a lot of shows in my queue to catch up on, and a lot of books still to read.

  • Chris Plumb

    The only bar I’ve visited in the last few years is one in our town that has hundreds of old video arcades inside. It gives us something to do other than watch each other drink and say stupid stuff.

    But as my wife and I get older, we find it much more entertaining to invite people over (or visit them) and play board games/trivia and eat lots of food and talk until two in the morning (plus we can do this without paying for a babysitter).

  • marydpierce

    All I can say is, you are NEVER going to look like Keith Richards, no matter how old you get!! Also, I’ve never been one for the bar scene either. Some people just aren’t built for it. I much prefer an evening with a few friends over a board game!!

  • Irene Barnett

    Totally agree – not much culture in LA. But, I’m in Santa Barbara and we are 1/10th the size and are made up entirely of wealthy retirees or college students. Not a lot for us hovering in the middle of those two. Though, they pretty much roll the streets up at 10 around here and that tends to fit nicely with my sleep patterns these days!!!

  • B

    Apropos of nothing, I wanted to let you know that occasionally I need to catch up with pop culture and you inspired me to start the Game of Thrones series after your vacation to the desert.

  • Mod Mom Beyond IndieDom

    I second Mary’s emotion: you are never gonna look like Keith! I got burned out on the club/bar scene having to be in them on such a constant basis when the band was gigging and touring regularly. Coming home reeking of cigarette smoke even though i never touched them and feeling like hell in the morning. I guess I’m old, but nowadays, when I get a chance to go out and do something, there’s a part of me that would rather be in my pjs drinking a homemade cocktail and reading a good book. And listening to Keith on the CD player. 😉

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