“Don’t let yesterday take up too much of today. Forget about things. Move on. It’s a new day”
— Chance the Rapper via Twitter
As I rolled over this past Monday, and asked my usual morning question “Alexa what time is it”? I was startled to hear “It’s Labor Day! Quick get out of bed and get ready for fall! Summer is over”! I was stunned and quickly realized she hadn’t said that at all. I mean there is no actual alarm for fall only the one in my head.
As a kid growing up in Chicago, Labor day signaled so very much, endings and beginnings. I remember my friend Linda and I, traipsing to Montrose Beach on Labor Day weekend, no matter the weather, and being struck by the ghost town that our beloved beach had become by then. A lone lifeguard or two; life guard stands on their side preparing to be stored. But, yet there we were huddled, often in sweatshirts, shorts and flip flops, chilled trying to eek out the last day of summer, as we poured over Seventeen Magazine ads that showed all the new back to school clothes. It was so conflicting, sitting at the chilly beach while coveting plaid skirts and sweaters. We were often one of a handful of kids scattered on the desolate beach, yearning for one more hot summer day, that seemed to never be, especially on Labor day.
This started me thinking, had I done everything I wanted this summer? Or the summer before, or the one before that? Being in a seasonal city, you seemingly have to pack everything into summer, before winter hibernation. Summer in Chicago is brief and fleeting, and perhaps that is why Labor day is such a demarcation. I asked Alexa … “Alexa have I done anything I had planned this year… much less this summer”!? Alexa responded “I can’t seem to find that answer for you” (damn you Alexa!) So I did a self check to see where I am, since I had decided I was gonna make hella changes, and told you I was, when I wrote Bringing Sexy Back.
Reflecting over the past three years (that would be a bit longer ago than when I wrote that damn blog) I can say “Hell yeah”!!!! Nobody was relegating this Broad to the shelf! Did I reinvent myself? Turns out I didn’t need to. I reached inside and pulled out that kid from the Labor Day beach setting, slapped her on the ass and said “get with the program”! I moved from the burbs to the city; I gave up my highway to hell shopping trips in favor of online shopping, where nothing seems to have limits and everything magically fits; went back to fuck me pumps; lost some friends, made some friends; went out with friends; dated; gained some weight, lost some weight; went on a trip to see film locations for my favorite show, The Walking Dead; reconnected with my cousins; took advantage of all Chicago has to offer over the summer; festivals, shows at Wrigley Field, even clubbing; and then the lakefront where I even took sailing lessons. Over all, I have stepped out of my box and comfort zone, not just over the summer, but winter, spring and fall and done things I have done before and things I never thought I would, like having a sticker on my phone that says “I Love Dick”, and at my age…
Yes, summer gives a sense of freedom and easy living, thinking anything is possible, so fit it all in before Labor Day, or not. Those girls huddled on the beach looking at fall clothes, were wise beyond their years, because who said Labor Day had to mark the end and be sad?
I am going to trade my flip flops for those new snake skin boots, and my bathing suit cover for that fringe jacket, and hit the streets because like the start of the old new school year… the days after Labor Day can be whatever we want them to be, exciting and new.
Alexa, what time did you say it was????? “Time to walk on the wild side”