Posted by: chlost | January 30, 2012

You look mahvelous!

When I was younger, I thought I would never get old.

Certainly, I thought, I won’t look like an old person.

My teenage years were in the seventies. It was a time of burning bras, wearing hippie clothes, and baby-oil drenched sunning. We were fearless.

The adults in my life tried to tell me. I can remember one comment in particular, which was made to me while I was wearing a very skimpy halter top, obviously bra-less. “Gravity knows no exceptions”, I was told. My friends and I  didn’t believe it. We were sure that we, the golden children of the seventies, were exempt from even the law of gravity.

My grandmothers were both still alive during these years.

I can recall looking at them, both probably in their 60’s at the time, and thinking that they were ancient. Actually, people did look a lot older at 60 than they do now days, but that’s another issue.

Oh, I felt so superior to them. I was disgusted by their arms, their necks, and the practical shoes.  Even the gray hair of one of my grandmothers (my mother’s mother had nearly black hair until she died at age 92-my mother also has black hair with little gray at 81) was something I  found repulsive.  When I looked at their hands, my teenage cockiness knew that I would never have age spots. They were so horrible to see!

Here’s a hint to anyone under 30:  The physical sign of aging which most disgusts you now, will certainly be something which will hit you as you get older.

I know. You are not going to get old.

And I know-even if you do get older, you will never look old.

Trust me.

If you are disgusted by arm flaps at 30, you will have arm flaps in 20 years. Big enough to ventilate a shopping mall.

Those who can’t stand turkey necks now, you are guaranteed to have a turkey neck in the future. You’ll make the Thanksgiving bird sit up and take notice.

If you scoff at being in the sun without protection, you too are going to have age spots. Maybe something worse.

Believe me. That’s how it works.

Every physical attribute that disgusted me when I was younger has attacked me now that I am older as payback for my ungenerous thoughts. EVERY. ONE. It is not a pretty picture.

So, repeat after me………”Old folks are beautiful!  Those arm flaps look wonderful! I hope I look as great as you do when I am your age!”

It’s your only hope. I only wish that someone had told me.



  1. This is hilarious. I’m getting too close to forty and am seeing the beginnings of some unattractive things to come. Hello age spots, double chin, arm flaps, varicose veins and oh, lots and lots of cellulite. Thank goodness I don’t have many opportunities to see the backs of my thighs. My apologies to the rest of the world who may not be so lucky 🙂

    Okay, now I’ll be serious. I think old people do have a certain beauty, even if it’s not gauged by the youthful standards. Their wisdom shines when you look into their eyes and that’s beautiful.

    • Forty! That’s still just baby! I agree that beauty standards as we age change, or shift. The standards of younger people are based on unimportant things. We usually can grow up and see the beauty that was there all along. And I would put money on the likelihood that the backs of your thighs are great looking!

  2. *hugs* to you darlin’! I’m sure you are one of the most gorgeous women your age (which ain’t that much older than me btw) … you must be because you are awesome. 🙂

    It’s funny, I never really looked at “old folks” in a negative way. I adored my great-grandma and would spend hours talking to her … her life was so interesting. She was a wonderfully stubborn and vibrant woman and I’ve always aspired to be just like her. At 88 she came and took care of 3 teenagers for a week when our mom had to spend a bit of time in the hospital. She did all the cooking and cleaning and refused to let us help. Yep, I’m determined to be just like her. 😉

    • Well, thank you! You are so sweet! I also truly admired my grandmothers, but that did not stop the thoughts in my shallow young mind of the physical signs of the aging body. Your Grandmother sounds awesome…no wonder you turned out so great!

  3. Mercy, how true. I was told but didn’t listen. I once saw a woman on the beach with flappy arms,back fat, varicose veins and said to my friend that I would never leave the house if I looked like that. Today I am that woman and the only thing that held true to my young thoughts is that I still won’t be seen in bathing suit like that. Otherwise, I am comfortable. The thing that helps is that my friends look like me or worse.

    • That is just how I thought as I would see it when I was younger (and maybe when I really was too old for that nonsense, as well. I rarely will wear shorts, let alone a bathing suit!

  4. You are not kidding. I don’t remember this but apparently after my grandmother had a varicose vein removed, when I was 2-years of age, I sat in my rocking chair and announced “not me, not my leg”. Not my leg for maybe the next 15-years. I started getting spider veins at 17 and varicose at 20. Thankfully, now that I no longer stand for my job, the situation has not been so bad.

    • My mom had lots of varicose veins…she was a nurse. Your story reminds me of a drawing that my oldest son made of her. In it, she was standing, in a dress, and there were all of these lines on her. He had drawn all of the veins……not knowing what they were, they were just a part of her. From my point of view, she earned every one of those from all of the years of standing. That is a very hard way to earn a living. Glad you are done with that.

  5. I grew a beard over 30 years ago. I think I am afraid to shave it off to see how I’ve changed. I’m sixty. I went bald at twenty seven, but don’t have a problem with that. I’m sure gravity is getting stronger as there is no better explanation for some of the other changes.

    • My husband also grew a beard long ago. He started when he graduated from high school, and has never shaved it. I have never seen him without a beard. My kids have tried to convince him that he should shave it, just so they can see his face. Nothing yet. He also has been bald since his early twenties…..when I first met him, his hair was thinning, but it was to his shoulders! Although gravity works on both men and women, I think its effect is more serious for women.

  6. Every word is true at 66 i know all about it.

    • Hey, 66 is YOUNG! 🙂

  7. I loved your line about the arm flaps “big enough to ventilate a shopping mall.” Gravity always wins.

    • Yes. Yes it does. Always.

  8. Indeed, time is not kind to any of us. And I also thought I’d be immune. sigh. 50 this year. I’m mostly okay with it, but sometimes my son’s arrogant about aging – he of the youthful perfection – makes me tell him, “Time will humble you.” He laughs.

    I sent an invitation to my blog which I had to hide. If it didn’t get to you, email me at and I’ll re-send.

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