/ˈfɔrti/[fawr-tee], noun, plural -ties, adjective
1. a cardinal number (a cardinal sin??), ten times four.
2. a symbol for this number, as 40 or XL (lovely) or XXXX.
3. a set of this many persons or things.
4. forties, the numbers, years, degrees, or the like, from 40 through 49, as in referring to numbered streets, indicating the years of a lifetime or of a century, or degrees of temperature: His office is in the West Forties. Her parents are in their forties. The temperature will be in the forties.
5. amounting to 40 in number.
Origin: bef. 950; ME fourti, OE fēowertig (c. OFris fiuwertich, OHG fiorzug, G vierzig).
...and then I found this while looking for a poem that grabbed my sentiments:
How to Celebrate a Fortieth Birthday
A fortieth birthday is the official commencement of middle age (again, lovely), even though most Americans don't make it all the way to 80 (can I bury my head in the sand now?). The reality hits that half a life is over, and although it's tempting to lament the loss of one's youth, and mourn the fortieth birthday, it's also true that there is a lot of life left, and depending on circumstances, it is often the perfect time to try something new. The following suggestions will help to celebrate rather than lament this momentous occasion.
- Attempt an extreme sport. Examples include scuba, bungee, or sky diving. I thought the idea is to KEEP living.
- Build a nest egg. -working on it
- Clean out all the closets. Include the garage and the attic. There are probably lots of mementos awaiting rediscovery and removal. -am trying to downsize for other reasons (see # 13 ).
- Drive on Route 66. If you're in the USA, this is a great and leisurely way to celebrate. Alternatively, drive across your country or do it on a motorcycle. -I'd like to see the CA Redwoods someday.
- Eat the worm. -uhh, ummm ...I have (teenage years -WHAT was I thinking!)
- Expose the wizard. Visit a talk show or movie set. no desire
- Forgive your mother and call your father. Take them out to dinner. It's about time you finally understood they are only human too. Am gaining understanding/thankfulness more and more everyday.
- Get back in shape. At the very least, join a gym. ha
- Give a really great toast. Recall the great things life has given you. -not one to make myself the center of attention.
- Give up on your extra marital affairs. Okay, so you don't have any but if you do, quit immediately and rediscover the love at home. pretty sad this one is listed... obviously doesn't apply here.
- Give up road rage. In fact, give up all rage. I only have wee moments few and far between.
- Go fishing. Get out into nature and discover why it is relaxing, rejuvenating and calming. Love nature and get out in it as much as possible.
- Have a baby. There's still time provided you are healthy and energetic. It's a great reason to remain that way for the next 20 years too. ha.. I sure hope so, because I am pregnant.
- Host a dinner party. Or throw an Oscar party or a Super Bowl party. No. I'm too busy and, like I said, I'm pregnant.
- Indulge a little. Do this by buying a $50 bottle of wine, a piece of real art, a car that costs more than $50,000, or a jewelry box full of jewelry. You've GOT to be kidding... a car that costs more than ?!? ..I'll indulge and pay more toward the mortgage or, maybe even, get a massage.
- Investigate the key tenets of a few major faiths. Pick one. We all need something to believe in. Hmmm.
- Learn something new. Try out new activities like a foreign language or the tango. No, they need to learn English.
- Learn to work your own VCR, DVD player or master a mass-transit system. Enough time spent relying on others to assist you. This is the manual reader in the house.
- Meet a new friend. Choose a friend of a different race and a different religion than you or reacquaint yourself with an old friend. Have.
- Move into the house of your dreams. Do this even if it's the house you're living in now, the house your children grew up in. If so, renovate or shift the furniture around. Spend more time there. Am in the house of my/our dreams- love it too.
- Pay off all your debts. Or, at least, pay off your credit cards or your student loans. -see #15.
- Pierce something other than your ear. Consider getting a piercing elsewhere, or get a tattoo. Geezus... some Hollyweird liberal must have written this one.
- Play a new computer software program. Borrow it from your kids and forget to return it. Too busy doing this darn thing.
- Play poker. Keep that straight face as long as you can. I'm good when I have... well, so I thought- my other half says no.
- Quit your dead-end job. Want to do it another 20 years? No? So, apply for a promotion, or take a sabbatical or go somewhere new to work. The time is now! Oh I did this 5 years ago.
- Learn new lyrics. Read the lyrics of one classic rap song, one popular country ode, and one rock anthem. Am pretty good at remembering lyrics, but coughed when I read "classic rap song".
- Rent the classics. There aren't any more excuses for missing them. Other than time being spent doing other stuff.
- Ride a roller coaster (again). Yeah, this sounds like a good one to do someday.
- Ride in a limo. Get the entire works - the champagne, the music and all. Just sit back and enjoy the ride. I would just have a hard time enjoying it... just not my thing to enjoy or spend money on.
- Serve on a jury. If you're asked, of course. I have never tried to get out of jury duty... maybe they smell my opinion coming, cause I've never been picked.
- Show gratitude. You can do this many ways but a great way is by sponsoring a poor child. Call me a skeptic with those types of programs. I'd rather go straight to the child/family... and have.
- Sleep under the stars. Choose a balmy night, a good sleeping bag and a friend or two to join you. This IS a fun thing to do.
- Stop smoking, finally, at long last. Stop other bad habits too. Enact a two-drink maximum or kick the all-day caffeine habit. Eehh... don't do any of those things... my habit is chocolate. It's a toughy to kick, but I did the whole 14 months I nursed our daughter.
- Stop speeding. You're getting too old for that and your eyesight isn't as good as it used to be. What's your hurry now? Driving faster to the end? Not a great idea and you want to see 50 don't you? Don't you? I completely agree and am getting better.
- Take a cruise. If you've been putting it off for "one day", today is that day. I am NOT getting on one of those disease incubators of a sardine can.
- Take center stage. Try out for a movie, a play or a choir or sign up to teach a class. Perhaps in time.
- Take up a new sport. Squash anyone? Squash sounds so good right now.. little butter, tad of salt... yum!
- Try your least favorite foods. Taste buds change and you might be pleasantly surprised. Now would be the time as I am hungry.
- Visit a new place. Visit a new country, a new state, a new city or go somewhere that makes people scratch their heads, wondering why you went there! Would like to visit NY just for a day or so, then I can appreciate the simple outdoor life even more.
- Write. Write a book, an article, Part One of your autobiography, a website or a blog. Or write a wikiHow. Here we are.
...then I found this. While it doesn't express my sentiments exactly, it was still worth posting:
by Kevin Griffith
At times it's like there is a small planet
inside me. And on this planet,
there are many small wars, yet none
big enough to make a real difference.
The major countries—mind and heart—have
called a truce for now. If this planet had a ruler,
no one remembers him well. All
decisions are made by committee.
Yet there are a few pictures of the old dictator—
how youthful he looked on his big horse,
how bright his eyes.
He was ready to conquer the world.
What?? ..."he WAS ready to conquer the world"... I'm still ready... let me just take a nap first. Then, maybe if/when the 2nd child gets to, say, around 2 or three, I'll start feeling like my old self again and will resume "conquering".