Sometimes circumstances catch one so unawares, it’s impossible to know how to respond.
And so it was just recently, when I was finishing some errands that included picking up overpriced and likely ineffectual facial moisturizer. (All facial moisturizers are, of course, overpriced and likely ineffectual.)
Fun fact: According to Statica.com, 47 per cent of Canadians spend between $100 and $499 per year on skin care products and the other 53 per cent are men…Er, that’s not right. Eleven per cent spend $500 or more and everyone else spend less than $100.
Standing at the counter with debit card in hand, the clerk leaned forward in a confidential manner and practically whispered:
“Do you really need this today?”
It made me wonder. Was I looking particularly wrinkled and haggish, as if I needed an emergency application of face cream?
Or was the attendant suggesting there was something wrong with my purchase, a left-wing conspiracy, perhaps, pushing the idea that women don’t actually need beauty products to be beautiful.
“It’s only,” she went on, and no longer in a hushed voiced but more of a bellow. “If you are 55 you would qualify for our seniors’ discount, but you’d have to come back later this week, when it’s seniors’ day.”
There are very few occasions when I am rendered completely speechless, and fortunately for all involved this was almost one of those times.
I merely stated that I am not 55, and then left with my moisturizer and as much dignity and speed as possible.
For crying out loud I won’t be 55 until sometime later this month.
And there is nothing wrong with being 55.
It’s just an age that is smack in the middle of a decade full of rapid, bewildering and painful changes in both mind and body for which one isn’t quite prepared
It’s like puberty in reverse.
To the point, 40 years ago I would have been buying acne cream.
About a month ago my family doctor confirmed my body is proceeding in the ordained fashion.
I complained of experiencing unusual muscle pain of late.
She nodded with understanding and said this is when I need to use and tone my muscles as when a woman is PM (that’s postmenopausal NOT postmortem, like I originally thought) she loses one per cent of her muscles every year.
This is very concerning, naturally, as it means by the time I am 155 I won’t have any muscles left at all.
There is nothing wrong with being 55. Anderson Cooper turned 55 this year.
So did Faith Hill, Tim McGraw and Keith Urban. 1967 was a heck of a year for the country music industry.
Chef Gordan Ramsay is 55. Julia Roberts, Pamela Anderson and Nicole Kidman are all 55 too.
But I bet no one offers them a seniors’ discount card at the cosmetic counter.
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