You Look Good for Your Age!

Yesterday, I was (as usual) whining about menopause. (This time to my hairdresser.) But I added – what can I expect, I’m almost 54.

“NO”, she howled, looking astounded. “I would never have guessed you were out of your 40s. Wow, you look really good.”

Hmmmm. First of all, I do think I look my age, whatever that means, and I couldn’t care at all. If you guessed my age as 53, I’d be perfectly fine. Of course, what does 53 look like anyway? (And for that matter, what does it look like to still ‘be in your 40s’?)

At what age is it no longer a compliment to ‘look your age’? Certainly, everyone is happy with 18, right? And 21. I remember loving 23 – 26. I do, though, currently have a young friend who’s bummed about turning 27. 27!!!

I remember first lying about my age in my early 30s, when I wanted to date a 28 year old guy. I believe I shaved off a few years.

Not anymore – I’ll be 54 in June. It is what it is.

Going back to my hairdresser and her, “Wow, you look really good” Why does looking good equate with looking younger? How many times have we heard someone say, ‘she was a beauty when she was young’? Why can’t we be beauties at every age?

I’ve never been wowed by women who clearly try to look younger. I’m sorry Jane Fonda – to me, my grandmother was more beautiful at 80 than you are. (Just my personal taste. Every woman should do whatever the heck she wants. I just wish society was encouraging about loving our aging selves just as we are.)

So, when someone says – ‘WOW, you look great for your age’ – should we ask them to apologize? 🙂



The Age Gap; Dating

I have always assumed it’s easier for a man to age than a woman but don’t know if I’m right.

Certainly, in the world of dating, it sure looks cushier for the guys. How often do we see an older man with a younger woman? Take George Clooney. Before he married his wife, Amal, he dated a series of young starlet types. When he married Amal, everyone applauded his ‘finally age appropriate’ choice. However, Amal Clooney is still 17 YEARS YOUNGER than her husband. No one raised an eyebrow. Instead they praised him for skewing older!!!

Imagine, if a 50 year old actress dated men 20 plus years her junior (like George did pre-Amal.) COUGAR!!! I admit that I would assume it wouldn’t last. That the guy was just using her for her money and fame. Don’t we all know that no young guy wants a much older woman?!!

And yet, I assume that Amal married for love.

Donald Trump is 25 years older than his wife Melania. No problem. France’s president Emmanuel Macron is 25 years YOUNGER than his wife. It’s all you ever hear about when reading about them, particularly her. When she’s interviewed, she is asked over and over about the age gap. Does anyone ask Melania? No, in fact, most people assume she’s getting a little old for her husband’s tastes!

If you read my blog regularly, you may remember my conversation with my accountant who is exactly my age – turning 54 this year. When I looked at my taxes and joked that I need to find rich man, he said that I’d have to find a guy in his 70s, because all his rich single friends are looking for women in their 20s!!!!

I wonder why this is? Anyone have any ideas?

I would like to add that I have NO interest in a boy in his 20s or young man of 30; however, I don’t want to have to scout nursing homes for dates!

Age and the Male Gaze

When I was younger and lived in NYC, I loved to go to bars alone. I’d bring books and notebooks and read and write and people watch. Usually, I made friends with the bartenders and regulars. Often, I became a regular.

I actually preferred going alone to going with friends. I’d sit at the bar and strike up conversations if I felt like it and kept quiet if I didn’t.

I met a fair amount of men that way, including one guy who became my boyfriend for 4 years.

Sitting at bars as a single woman kind of helped my self-esteem, because I would get hit on a lot. Men always talked to me. Having spent so many years feeling fat and ugly, it boosted my ego that anyone noticed me.

Fast forward 15 to 20 years. Last month, I got take-out at a restaurant. While waiting for my order, I sat at the bar, which was filled with guys of all ages, sitting alone.

Each looked up as I sat down. Not one looked again, let alone spoke to me. It was busy and my order took a while, so I looked around for someone to talk to, but no one looked back at me.

It hit me that nothing has changed. Nothing, but my age. I have NEVER sat at a bar without someone engaging me. Wow, I really am in my mid-50s!!!!!

Does it bother me? I am pausing. Mostly, I’ll say no. I love to sit and daydream. No one at the bar actually looked too interesting to me. AND, I am 54 – an age where heads don’t turn like they used to. It’s kind of comfortable and relaxing and pressure-free.

Still, it was fun, back in the day, to go out and flirt. You never knew who you might meet or talk to or have fun with. Each night felt like a new adventure. And that boyfriend of 4 years was a great guy who helped me through a very tough time.

Yet, here I am — older, wiser, way more stable and settled and – just fine. What did I do that night at restaurant? I made friends with the bartender, a great woman who was really an actress. I went to her play the following week – it was so good and so much fun. She’s smart and funny and reads a lot. I have been dying to make new friends.

So, I guess I did have an adventure afterall!


Is anyone else tired? I’ve had long days, sinus headaches, bad sleep and hot flashes.

Would anyone else like to just take a break? Could we crawl under the covers until winter is over (don’t get me started on not having power for a week!)

And yet I know so many people with soooo much energy. Many of the folks I work with come in at 3 am and work ceaselessly for at least 12 hours. And they’re fine! How do people function day after day after day with four hours of sleep? They all have families and lives….and they’re cheerful!!!!!!!!

Not me, I’m ready for a nap as I write this. And I’m NEVER cheerful on not enough sleep. I could, however, star in any number of zombie movies.

(I know my sister is reading this and is mouthing “exercise, Mel, exercise”.)

Is there else out there, even someone who eats well, exercises, loves their families and friends and still….feels hopelessly tired?

Going Home

It’s been a week without power at home. It’s been a week of (not)sleeping on my friends couch. My displaced kitty not eating and mewling for the first few days. Living out of a suitcase and trying not to take up space. Eating weirdly for me. Showering when convenient for my friends.

I will miss them.

Lack of (electrical) Power and Food

Our power is out at home – no electric, heat or water – and the electric company says it’s out until Thursday. I’m staying with friends, who are generously letting me sleep on their couch, which I really, really appreciate.

However, I’m a little ‘off’ with food. I’ve lived alone in my own apartment since college (many years ago), and I’m just used to my own refrigerator.

I’m not exactly sure what to do – my friends have a very full refrigerator and love to cook and eat – they spend most of their time in their kitchen. I don’t want to get in the way.

They are so generous and continuously offer food, telling me that I am welcome to anything and everything. However, they don’t eat like I eat. The fridge is filled with pasta in cream sauce and ribs and sausage and pepper and pie, etc. There are no veggies or light fare at all.

Is it rude to bring my own food? In some ways, I’d rather just stay out of their kitchen.

So far, I took myself out to dinner Saturday and got a salad bar. And out for lunch Sunday and had soup and salad. Still, eating out I find I end up eating more than I would when I’m home. (Forget about how expensive it is – I consider myself to be in a state of emergency :-)) Also, I figured I’d give my friends some time to themselves.

I did eat with them last night – cheeseburgers and macaroni and cheese and coconut custard pie. Not a green vegetable to be found. We had a lovely time, and I don’t mind eating such heavy stuff occasionally (and I am incredibly grateful for their hospitality.) But still, my body’s not it’s usually absolutely comfortable self.

Add to it, that everything is ‘off’. I’m sleeping on their couch, and not sleeping well. At all. When I’m just simply exhausted, I sometimes think I’m actually hungry. Or I look to food for energy when I normally wouldn’t.

So, everything feels a little weird out of my home, my comfort zone. What am I going to do about it?

Nothing. I’m going to be fine, no matter what. I’m too busy to worry anymore about it. Hopefully, power will come back soon. ‘Cause what I really, really need is sleep!

More on Aging

Per my last post about going gray, I guess I looked in the mirror yesterday and my long bouncy hair seemed wrong on my wrinkling aging face. Like when an older person with a smooth lifted face has super wrinkly hands. I’m simply not 30. or 40. or even 50 anymore.

And that’s fine. I am who I am.

A naysayer in my head tells me my age is a serious problem, because I’m single. Men want young stunning women, the voice screams. Will I take myself out of the game if I go gray and stop caring so much about the way that I look?

And yet, I haven’t meant anyone while blonde and bouncey, or even…younger, soooooooooo what’s the difference?

Truth is I’ll be 54 in June, and I have absolutely earned every gray hair and wrinkle and laugh line. Might as well embrace them.