Grey Hairs

I’ve always been a big birthday person. I like celebrating people’s birthdays. I like celebrating my own. I never really got down in the dumps about getting older. My philosophy was always to be grateful to make it to each successive year, to celebrate my progress in life thus far, and to count my blessings. And for god’s sakes, I’ve had grey hair since I was 23. Who am I trying to fool?

That was my philosophy until I became obsessed with True Detective. Because, you see, being obsessed with True Detective means that I’ve been reading about the director, Cary Fukunaga. And in this obsession, I’ve learned that Cary Fukunaga is 36 years old. 36 YEARS OLD. As in, two years older than me.

The only appropriate response to to that fact is asoiehga;wiehga;sodihga;wlejga;bdoiau?!

We all know how young Lena Dunham is. I know that there are many people my age or younger who are far more successful than I am. Somehow, for the most part, it doesn’t bother me. I can still rationalize my way around it – Lena Dunham’s style isn’t my style, but more power to her, that sort of thing. But True Detective is just too good. It’s too good. It’s a show that haunts my dreams.

You get out of film school and you feel like you can take on the world. You’re young. You’re a wunderkind, a prodigy, an enfant terrible. Then, a few years pass, you make a movie, it makes the tiniest of waves and then the ocean settles again as if nothing happened. So you enter your young turk years. Still in the game, still working, slightly older, slightly wiser. A few more years pass. You see your friends with Real Jobs become executives, buy houses, travel to Belize (for some reason, everyone’s going to Belize). Meanwhile, you’re still pounding away, feeling like a kid, debt mounting, wearing that old, goofy dress that used to say you were too focused on your work to care about your looks, but that now says that you shop exclusively at Forever 21.

I was lucky enough to marry a man whose business eventually took off and allowed us to start a family together, and I am well aware of what a privileged position I’m in, especially as an artist. I’ve been through my starving years when it was between buying groceries or paying rent, and believe me, I’m in no hurry to go back. At the same time, I hope that I’m still hungry enough to be fueled by great work, inspired by fellow filmmakers still chasing the dream, and wise enough to know that the the journey and the work still count for something, even if not all of us get to make our own personal True Detectives.  Maybe an All About Steve?

Maybe some of us will be lucky enough to be doing what we love well into our golden years.

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