There was a brief window of time, in late 2004, when I could almost consider myself attractive. Physically attractive, I mean. I was eating well and exercising well. I had a bunch of great friends. I earned more than I needed to get the bare necessities of life and spent some of the rest on fun stuff like road trips to Seattle with a friend to see a band I really liked. I even had a pet cat who mostly liked me.
Look at that guy. He’s smiling. He’s got some hair (don’t look in the back, there’s a balding spot that’s only going to get worse as the years roll on; within a year, he’ll be just shaving his head rather than trying to fool anyone). It’s 10 days until his 40th birthday; the last, carefree days of being a thirtysomething.
Would that Brian tell us he’s happy, or would he have other concerns? I suspect that he would not admit or commit 100% to being happy. But try as I might, I can only think of a handful of things he could possibly be worried about—which is easy, since I was once him, and he eventually became me.
I would like to talk to him, though. Hear him out. Listen to his worries and his cares. Buy him a drink and shoot the shit. 2004 was an election year, wasn’t it? That was the year Bush won his second term, right? That has got to be one of his (our) biggest concerns right there.
Hold the phone, wait up. I can find out what 2004 Brian was thinking about because this very blog goes back before that date! Hang on, let me browse the archives…
Financial matters, paying off my credit cards and becoming debt-free. I made it, too, for a short while. Veiled metaphors about the woman I was dating at the time. Some political stuff. I even found the post I wrote about the night that picture, above, was taken.
None of those posts have titles, because back when I was writing them, Blogger didn’t have that option. They’re all called “Untitled” now, and it’s confusing. It’d probably be a lot of work to go fix that, though. I’ll leave it as an artifact of the passing of time.
Other marks of the passing of time: I used a FlexCar to drive to Seattle. FlexCar was a car-sharing service that became ZipCar, which then got bought or became something else I’m too lazy to look up right now. Still, a worthwhile service, though I don’t have need of it since I have bought a cheap and somewhat reliable car for myself.
Also, iPods. Remember iPods? I was just talking about music, wasn’t I? iPods were one of the many ways I kept music going around me, allowing me to put a soundtrack to my life. I loved my iPods. From the posts, it appears I named one of mine “DeadSexy”. That’s obviously before I settled on naming all my computer-y devices after authors (I’m writing this on Gygax, for example, which is my Windows desktop I built myself).
Turns out, 15 years ago wasn’t that long ago. I can still relate to that Brian. He’s earned his smile; I’ll leave him to it.