Wow, the beginning of a blog can be as exciting as the first day of school. Why blog? Posterity, venting, or reaching out? All cliches in a world that has become a cliche in itself. The millenium generation led us to believe that once we look younger than our age, then we most certainly are. Thus the incongrous statement that 60 is the new 40. Well I have news for you, I am 62 and there are days when I feel like the new 82! The current fad for self esteem and making ourselves feel good above all things that make sense in a normal and sensible world; has proliferated to the aged where botox is the drug of choice for those who want to be the “new” something or other. Old crap that nobody wants is now “vintage” and old age is “mature.” Old folks’ homes are not for old people any more but for “residents,” as if by changing an adjective one changes the noun. This absurdity crosses all walks and shades of life because the world is currently in a social free fall of political correctness that means nothing and has little impact on reality. This blog is for the 60+ crowd; without any excuses or apologies. Let it all hang out ladies and gentlemen!
So I am 62, but I am one of those who seems to be the “new” 40 because very few people believe I am the age that I am. My secret? I have no idea. I have always exercised, ate vegetarian, and worked my butt off as a mother and wife. I went back to school at 54 and got my MBA at 60. My brain kept on working, but I must admit that there are times I forget where I put my underwear. I carry my seniors’ card for discounts which I rarely get because no one believes that I am over 60! So instead of arguing with the bus driver I pay the full fare. When I talk about the Beatles, the Stones, and Peter, Paul, and Mary, I am met with skepticism, then I pull out my records, yes geniune 1967 records, and I get looks of incredulity. “But you have been touched up??” No touching up, not in that botox way. So why is it so important to look young rather than be young?
I have noticed that women are under more pressure to remain looking young. Which is a double standard in a world that worships beauty and aneroxia. A gray hair on a woman is the end of civilization, good scripts in a movie, good job, and a quick trip to the hairdresser for color. Gray on a man is distinguished. I am no different. I literally time my trips between hair coloring days keeping close vigil before the mirror for the first sign of gray. Why? If truth be told I would not want to be young again in today’s world. Too much stress. Then what keeps me going to the hairdresser to remove the slightest hint of age, spend thousands of dollars on wrinkle creams, and starve when I could eat a horse (or in my case bean protein)?
I am going out on a limb and send out a cosmic assumption to the void that as women we have been conditioned to feel inferior if we do not look good. I blame the fashion world for putting out clothes for embryos. Finally, I blame the entertainment industry which puts out movies and shows where people gorge and never put on a pound. How realistic is that? Thank God for Betty White who has emerged as the coolest 90+ woman of this century. She flaunts her age like Samson showed off his six-pack!
No folks, 62 is not the new 40…it is 62, with arthritis in both hands, colds and flus that take weeks to get over, extra padding which I get to see in the mirror every morning, and wrinkles where wrinkles should not be. But give me an hour to make myself up, an hour at the hairdresser, a good support bra, and hell, I am the new 30! It is all perception.