Growing Middle-Aged Gracefully

I am trying to age gracefully, largely because I do not have the money to do so any other way. But in a fit of depression about the marionette lines developing from my nose down to my chin (think Angela Merkel, who has a lot more on her mind than I do), I decided to have a consultation with a doctor about getting Juvederm injections. The consultation was free and you did not have to commit to anything, so I figured, “information is good.” I had been told by a friend of mine who has used the product that Juvederm, sold by the syringe, can make a huge difference in one’s appearance and that one syringe, at $500, could soften lines (the effects of which had the added benefit of lasting over 18 months).

What follows is a from-memory (obviously, I didn’t tape the conversation) transcription of my meeting with this doctor, who was an attractive Russian lady with a very no-nonsense way about her.

Doctor Russian Lady: Please to be telling me what you wish for.

Me: Well, I am wondering about using a filler, and I just wanted to know what the least amount of it I could use is, I mean, the least amount that would make a difference and that wouldn’t look freakishly unnatural. I don’t have a lot of money, so I was thinking one syringe maybe and…

DRL: (Frowning, staring at me, pulls out pad and pen and writes a bunch of stuff down. Shows me what she has written, with the number $1900 at the bottom.) First I am using Botox on gigantic wrinkles on gigantic forehead, and then three syringes of Juvederm on deep creases on face. You are having uneven creases, so I will to be using more on left side of face than right. Also you are having jowls, which I will help prop up and then you are needing injections on thin lips.

Me: (Feeling suicidal, having been previously unaware of just how hideous I am.) Well, um, first of all, I really don’t want to look unnatural. I don’t want puffy lips. And I mean, yeah, they’re thin, but you know, I mean, er, I make jokes about having lips like Heinrich Himmler, but I really don’t think I do. Do I?

DRL: Lips are not like lips of Heinrich Himmler or any other person from Third Reich. By the way, my grandfather died at Stalingrad fighting German devils.

Me: Wow. Well, bless him. My uncle, too. I mean, not at Stalingrad, but…

DRL: Yes, was hero in Great Patriotic War. But the reason you are needing fuller lips is that you are having gigantic forehead and face does not look balanced. Fuller lips will balance gigantic forehead.

Me: Well, I just don’t want those fish lips you see on ladies.

DRL: I am not to be giving you fish lips. Full lips. Like Angelina Jolie.

Me: Well, hers are kinda fishy. Anyway, she’s Angelina Jolie. That’s different. And I really don’t think my forehead is gigantic.

DRL: Yes, is enormous. You are looking like Tweety Bird.

Me: (Close to tears, trying to form sentences…)

DRL: (Sensing, finally, that I am upset.) No! No! Gigantic forehead is good thing. When I was student at V.I. Lenin Institute of Neurology for the Great Soviet People, we were being taught that big forehead is meaning big brain.

Me: I don’t know about that.

DRL: But you are just needing some balancing with fuller lips.

Me: Yeah, but you know, I really was just concerned about my marionette creases. I’m starting to look like Angela Merkel.

DRL: (Stares in disbelief.) You are looking nothing like Angela Merkel. Angela Merkel is dumpy German lady with bowl cut.

Me: Right. Well, I’m glad I don’t look like that, I guess, but I just was trying to make a little joke, you know.

DRL: Ah. Is humour?

Me: Yeah. I just was trying to give an example of someone with those marionette lines. I mean, I feel bad saying that because she is way more accomplished than I will ever be, and she certainly has a lot on her plate and…

DRL: Yes, yes. So $1900 you are looking fresh and with full lips and not fish lips and with no wrinkles on gigantic, enormous forehead.

Me: Right. Well, that is a bit out of my price range.

DRL: I can give 10% discount.

Me: I need more like an 80% discount.

DRL: Please to be leaving.


Would really love to hear what the two ladies I wrote about here have to say about the events in Cologne and elsewhere on New Year’s Eve, especially the fact that the Mayor of Cologne blamed the victims. 

One of the ladies I described in that piece is quite young and goes to slut walks and such. I would be curious to see how she is going to square the circle of her need to portray the wearing of a niqab as something noble, with her (quite justified) belief that rape victims should not be blamed for what happens to them based on their clothing. I’m sure both she and the other woman about which I wrote will find a way to excuse the perpetrators, because leftists, when stuck choosing between Islamism and women’s rights, generally go for the former, oddly enough.

New Year’s Resolutions

  1. Always keep New Year’s resolutions.
  2. Get up early and get right out of bed and meditate for ten minutes before starting day (but only after coffee). Am already doing that this morning.
  3. Lose weight. Get more fit. Before this happens: 
  4. Cut down on wine intake, no matter how stressed I am. Find other ways to handle stress, such as herbal tea.
  5. Do something creative/career-oriented every day, and not just watch old episodes of ’70s TV shows on YouTube.
  6. Be more patient with other humans and also with myself.
  7. Be less gutless.
  8. Be less of a ridiculous person.
  9. Don’t buy any more lipsticks/lip glosses until have used up all the ones I have, which are myriad.
  10. Remember I am lucky to be alive and healthy (touch wood).
  11. Be a better girlfriend to Significant Other, who puts up with me for reasons I will never understand.
  12. Help as many animals as I can.
  13. Try to be as vegan as I can.
  14. Read Finnegans Wake (and don’t put an apostrophe in the title, even though I really want to. Joyce wanted the title that way, and yes, I realize it means something).
  15. Fight my natural introversion and actually go out sometimes to see friends and family instead of merely maintaining relationship with them over social media.
  16. Remember that life is just a bowl of cherries. Don’t take it serious. It’s too mysterious:

It is…not, but try to believe it is! Happy 2016, dear readers.

January 1, 2016

Born on this day in 1449, Lorenzo de Medici, “Il Magnifico.” He wrote — among other things — the following words:

Quant’ e bella giovinezza,

Che si fugge tuttavia!

Chi vuol esser lieto, sia:

di doman non c’e certezza.

If you know any romance languages, you can probably figure that out, but just in case, it says (more or less), “How beautiful is youth (or how beautiful is it to be young)/which nevertheless disappears (runs away)/Be happy all who wish to be/of tomorrow there is no certainty.”

Basically, “enjoy life while you can.”

I am currently reading this book, from which I am learning a good deal. Tim Parks’ non-fiction are always terrific. (Not saying his novels aren’t terrific, I just haven’t read any of them — yet.)

Update: Ok, I just finished the afore-linked Tim Parks book and it includes his translation of the bit of poetry above. His translation is, obviously, better than mine. Here it is: How fine youth is/Though it flee away/Let he who wishes, enjoy/Nothing’s certain tomorrow.