Friday, February 27, 2009

Mirrors

I seriously try to avoid looking in the mirror these days. I'm not just catering to my aversion to my too big body. I have reached that point that my mother reached - who is that old lady in the mirror? Well, maybe it isn't that bad, but I can't stand to see the wrinkles and craggy lines in my face. My products aren't working as well as I hoped. Where is the "airbrush in a bottle?" That's what I need. I've seen these ads for some kind of mineral face powder - better than going bare or something like that. I don't wear makeup - never have. But I feel the need to cover these damn crags in my face! I saw a new Cover Girl liquid makeup product with Oil of Olay anti-wrinkle potion in it. I went to the store and looked at it, but couldn't figure out what shade to get and didn't want to waste the money on something that would look ridiculous on my skin. Lotion and more regenerating serum is what I need.

OK, so mirrors are not a true reflection of what we look like to others. Did you know that? Something about the reverse image, but what we see in the mirror is not what others see. Have you ever seen the 1/2 and 1/2 images? One side of your face actually looks different from the other. So depending on which side of your face you are featuring, your image looks different. Reversing it in the mirror gives you an incorrect image. I saw this invention of like 5 different mirrors that when the reflections are done right, give you the actual image that is how others see you. I'm not sure I am ready for that unless I can get these wrinkles under control.

I've always thought it strange that our eyes are such intricate organs and can do so much, but the one thing they can't do is gaze upon the being that houses them. I think there is wisdom in that. We pay way too much attention to image and how we look to others. Fashion week coverage demonstrates that. It's not that I don't care how I look, obviously I do. But I want to please myself, not some committee of fashionistas. Although some days I disappoint myself - I look a little ragged as I leave my house. But then I just write it off to midlife free pass and go about my business.

Yes, the midlife free pass is my invention that says, because I am in midlife, I get a free pass on days when I don't have the time, energy, or discipline to look fabulous. I have earned this pass because of my sage experiences and my senior-ish position in society. My wisdom and seniority allow me to be taken seriously and I am afforded the respect I deserve, even if my outward appearance may be disheveled or baggy-eyed. That's my rule and I am sticking to it. Mirrors be damned.

Monday, February 23, 2009

"Single Women Over 50...

Are about as f***ed a demographic as there is"- from the movie Something's Gotta Give

The lament of hetero single women of any age is the lack of quality men. Women who want what they want are likely to go after it. Thus the "woman on the prowl" analogy that is the Cougar Culture. In Must Love Dogs, the 50+ judge sends her picture to the divorced man who had just gone through the wringer in her courtroom. He says, "that's some fine looking Cougar, but I'm benched. I'm out of the game right now." Now what judge in her right mind would do this? Or am I completely naive? I always loved Samantha on Sex in the City because she wasn't afraid to go for it. But I don't think she ever got called a Cougar. There are dozens of websites devoted to this phenomenon - and mostly organized around older women seeking younger men.

A similar cultural phenomenon is MILF - Mother I'ld Like to F***. There are movies, mainstream and porno, dedicated to the sexual escapades of women who have teen aged or college aged kids who are coveted by friends of such children. These women are often portrayed as either hypersexed or undersexed. Either way, they want it and they will take it off a young man ready to demonstrate his skilz. Sheesh.

Such stereotyping makes it hard for any older woman to legitimately hang with a younger guy. There is always the undertone of tawdry. And you know...if the genders are reversed it's just daddy warbucks buying a babe and nobody blinks. For crying out loud - Hugh Heffner, the ultimate geezer, has nothing but 20-something blondes in his bed. God bless him, but if I were posing with young studs, it would be labeled as granny sex and would be ridiculed. I think Hef gets away with it because the women on his arm are always of fantasy quality - bodacious, beautiful, and oozing sexuality. How could he possibly be expected to resist? Of course he has license to keep up this lifestyle. But do older guys get away with big age differences only if the younger woman looks like a bimbo? No.

There is something to be said for the finely honed knowledge, experience, and technique of an older woman. Maybe my bod is not finely toned, but it works and can provide satisfaction. I know how to give and receive and enjoy it! I have a young friend and yes, sex is part of our relationship. But it is not the mainstay of our relationship. We have much in common and enjoy similar activities. We are intellectually compatible. Being sex buddies is a nice perk. Some men like larger women, or blondes, or Asian women, or older women. Age should not disqualify women from the dating pool. Not every guy may want to be with an older woman, but it should not be seen as taboo. Do I have to look like Samantha Jones to be "allowed" to be with my younger guy? I shouldn't, but that is how it is portrayed.

I've been single now for a while. I don't expect to be in a serious relationship, but am open if something comes along. My younger guy wants a younger woman for the long haul. I get that. I don't really have an interest in men my age unless they have the same ageless outlook that I have. I would love to find a nice 30 something guy who knows where he's going, is not interested in having a conventional family, and will relish what I bring to the relationship. I'll keep looking.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

skin care products

Whoa. I have been cruising the skin care aisles looking for products that will work with my skin. I believe that women our age are definitely being targeted. I'm surprised they don't employ barkers to hawk this stuff. I just wanted to find a facial moisturizer that would do a little something to even my skin tone, blend away wrinkles, and "brighten" my skin. I saw that in an ad. I am not sure what that means, but "bright" sounds young, doesn't it? I went to Target, CVS, the supergrocery, Walgreens, etc. I found the land of Olay - where I can spend big $ on very scientific sounding dermatological tested ingredients that promise to lift skin, remove wrinkles, and make me look like Christie Brinkley - well not really, but she is my hero.

I used to use a Ponds anti-aging towlette. $5 and did a nice job getting rid of the wrinkles. After a few years, my skin began to get more sensitive - not really dry, but sensitive. I can still break out if I put something goopy on my face. My mother told me that breakouts and blemishes would be gone by the time I was 19. She was waaaaay wrong. So I looked for something else and came upon a L'Oreal product called Age Perfect for Mature Skin. I was sure this was for the nursing home crowd or at least the Mah Jong League. But they had a nice cream based cleanser with "micro-beads" to gently exfoliate. It sounds like a spa treatment, so I went for it. Oh, and the price is right - $8. I love it. I guess my skin is mature. Cleanses, exfoliates, wrinkles be gone, and does not dry the skin.

One day I noticed my forearm and wrist. It looked like my skin was bunching up and hanging. WTF? It almost looked paper-y. You know what I mean - old lady skin. AAAAACCCCCKKKK! Back to the store to see if there was a firming body lotion that would regenerate my skin's youthfulness, elasticity, firmness, and make me look like I am not an old lady.

Luckily, I found a wonderful product - made by Vaseline. It comes in a lavender pump bottle and does wonderful things for my skin - including banishing that aging, saggy look. The only quibble I have is that it smells like tea when you put it on. The price you pay for beauty, but it won't break the bank. A large pump dispenser is about $6. I want to look fabulous, but I am only willing to lay out so much cash.

Next, I am going to tackle the puffy bags that are under my eyes. They must be banished!

Who am I?

I am having a blast. I reached the big 50 and it doesn't matter. I have done more since I was 45 than I did before reaching that age. I have read endless accounts of women who say the same thing. There's a reason they call it 50 and Fabulous.

Now the younger ladies may believe this is all a way to live in denial. I thought that when I was younger, absolutely dreading the march of time. But you know, life is what you make it. I love to have fun and so whatever age I am, that's what I do.

I am sharp, dynamic, reasonably attractive, very aware of the world around me, engaged with people and events, and committed to the things I believe in. I am a teacher, a mentor to an elementary school student, an activist, member of several nonprofit boards, politically active, sexually active, culturally aware, and boast a bevy of committed friends, colleagues, and a network around the country. It's all good.

I wanted to write a blog just for us gals over 50 who have a lot of life and don't act our age. I am not a cougar, because I am not a predator. I am not promiscuous, but I am a flirt. I am, however, writing this blog with a nom de plum - it's the only way to be really truthful without putting other people's privacy in jeopardy.

I keep it real, keep it fun, and hope you enjoy my musings.