“The secret to staying young is to live honestly, eat slowly, and lie about your age.”
– Lucille Ball

It seems that I am not the only one “celebrating” a birthday this weekend: Montreal’s favourite son is turning 80 on Sunday, and we have a nice feature in The Gazette today about him. But I suspect that Leonard Cohen and I and others born at this time some years ago are not exactly “celebrating” the odometer change in our lives.

In fact, I am in total denial, though I confess I have been a wee bit more gloomy than usual this past week, and we September 20something Virgos tend to be an introspective lot anyway — right, Leonard?

But I am also in rebel mode: Right now, I’m thinking about buying a muscle car — a Mustang is the way to go, Gazette car expert Kevin Mio assures me — and scheduling a facelift, and buying a new set of drums so I can join a band, or, hey, maybe becoming the lead singer of that band. Though I won’t be anywhere near as mellow as Leonard is. Think Courtney Love . . . think punk rock band.

You know what I’m sayin’, right? “Raise a little hell!”

Smiles . . . In case you didn’t notice, I’m not aging gracefully.

Fuck that!

And, introspectively speaking, what is age, anyway? I mean, are we not immortal spirits wearing cloaks of flesh and bones? “Immortal” means beyond time itself . . . Immeasurable . . . Ageless . . .

Yes, I know you could argue that the body is not ageless, that it gets old and fails, releasing the immortal spirit into wherever . . . and we could go round and round discussing if the real you is spirit or body . . .

But it hurts my blondeness . . . And if I am going to round and round, I’d prefer to do it in a muscle car, a red convertible, of course . . .

Sigh . . .

Age is a state of mind, some say, which is why my Facebook page says I’m turning 21. Because wanting to be the next Courtney Love and drive a red convertible Mustang is something a 21-year-old might want, yes? Though my Facebook page might as well say I am a trillion and 1, turning a trillion and 2 on Sept. 22 — such is my timelessness . . .

Sigh . . .

I wonder if Leonard will appreciate all the “Happy Birthday” greetings he will be receiving tomorrow. Or does he just want to hole up somewhere and sulk and drink (like I do)? I suppose reaching 80 and still being able to perform as he does is something to truly celebrate. He is an inspiration to me . . . I hope my body holds out to 80, and that I can still perform in my punk rock band.

Or failing that, still work at The Gazette (grins).

Regardless if Leonard and I will appreciate all the well-wishes or not, we will no doubt be gracious and say “thank you” to any who say those two words that will make me, personally speaking, want to retch. I imagine even Courtney would mutter a “thank you.”

So I figured I would head you off at the pass now, and say “thank you” in advance, so you don’t have to wish me a you-know-what. It’s done . . . Yes, yes, thank you!

Now, let’s move on. Let’s rock!

Oh, one more thing:

Dear Leonard, Happy Birthday!! Many happy returns!

– Jillian