Stay Young and Beautiful

I have a birthday at the end of the month, so even though I’m perfectly satisfied with my current age I will have to relinquish it.  I’m not one to pout, darlings, but the truth is that I’m really only comfortable with aging when someone else is doing it.  

Here’s where this post was supposed to turn away from the narcissism of my own issues about my birthday and discuss more lofty and socially important matters–the tyranny of youth, how to confront aging as a femme, blah blah blah.  But honestly, I’m not in the mood.  It’s just too dreary.

The thought that makes my inescapably middle-aged heart happy is this:  Van is 9 years older than me, so I’m always younger in comparison.  Wasn’t I clever falling in love with an older butch?   But actually she looks so much younger than her actual age that people regularly don’t believe her when she tells them how old she is.   No kidding, a new acquaintance just asked to see her driver’s license!   And she makes absolutely no effort to achieve this youthful glow, whereas I have a whole skincare regime–cleanser, exfoliator, masks, treatments and mosturizer. (Van says it takes me forever to get ready for bed.  Not true, I retort; it’s just seems like forever if all you do at night is brush your teeth! )

But since I’m indulging my narcissism, let’s get back to my story. Looking for words of wisdom and comfort today, I pulled out my copy of Helena Rubinstein’s My Life for Beauty, her 1964 autobiography which is also a beauty guidebook.  For women past 35, Helena advises:  “Sleep without a pillow or allow yourself a flat one only.  This wards off extra chins.”   Extra chins!!!  Good god.

Fuck it. I love my fluffy pillow and do not plan to stop using it anytime soon.  And, although I adore Helena, how reliable is the advice of anyone who says that “the ideal time to exercise in the evening is when you return from work at about 6:00 o’clock”?  Is she out of her ever-loving mind?!  That’s the ideal time for a cocktail, of course.

“To get back my youth,” Oscar Wilde wrote, “I would do anything except take exercise, get up early, or be respectable.”  Exactly.  Time for a Manhattan!


11 Responses

  1. I love your attitude about all this, and I’m right there with you.

  2. I’m aging again on Sunday. I feel ya luv. LOL

    I’m not that worried about it — I never promised Jess I’d be young forever… 🙂

    Hi Tina, I left you a comment on your blog to wish you a very, very happy birthday! Jess will be sweeping you off your feet, no doubt! 😉 xo SF

  3. OMG I totally love you, my femme sister, you’re like the older sister I never had, the one who’s so much fun and loves to live life. Thank you for this post. As always, it’s right on time!!!!


    Love u too! xo SF

  4. Please don’t be offended if I take up the older butch mantra on your coat tails…I like the idea of f*cking the pillow or the pillow f*cking me also. Just so at my edge towards middle age someones always f*cking something in my happy abode. I love it dear that you have a January birthday…I stumbled upon mine in early January-you have won my heart and won a place on The Outskirts blogroll. Cheers, and happy Groundhog Day.

    A very happy belated b’day to you, hostess! Next time you check my blogroll you’ll see I’ve returned the favor. xo -SF

  5. Happy birthday SF. Best birthday ever!

  6. Oscar Wilde is a genius, and so are you. Happy early Birthday, dearest, I hope it’s at least as wonderful as you are!

    Isn’t it true about our loverbirds? Mine is always already in bed, thrashing around hollerin’ “It’s too cooooolllllldddd in here, what are you DOING? Get in the bed!” and I’m like, “Jesus! Can I take my contacts out? And put on some eye cream, and…”

    She also gets FURIOUS if I try and sleep with my hair up. It’s ridiculous. She pitches a fit and tears it out of whatever it’s in and only then can she fall asleep.

    So strange, but what can we do?

    Thx for the sweet words and the comment about you & M, which made me smile. I’m so glad we’re ladyfriends ;-)xo -SF

  7. Wow, what a coincidence (again) my b-day is on Jan 31st! I don’t know I know I shouldn’t be vain about my age…I’ll just finally be turning

    Go ahead, rub it in! 😉 You are, without a doubt, the most amazing 21 year-old I know. The world is your oyster, my dear! xo -SF

  8. oh happy early birthday!!!!

    i’m one of those people that really loves some of the outward signs of aging. I have a streak of gray hair (that is becoming more prominant) and i adore it! i’ve had it since high school but to me it’s about showing where i’ve been.

    you bring up so many interesting topics here—specifically about what it means to age and be a femme, i think this is something that isn’t talked about enough!

    TY Sassafras. I agree about your final point. There’s a great interview with Amber Hollibaugh in the anthology _Femme: Feminists, Lesbians and Bad Girls_, but other than that I don’t know of any published work in which femme and aging is discussed. If anyone else does, please share! And I think it’s great that you embrace the evidence of age including your grey streak. Stay tuned for my next post on this! xo -SF

  9. happy birthday, dear! or, if you’d rather ignore it and let it slip quietly by, i’ll hush. but, frankly, i have yet to understand why one would do that sort of thing. it’s such an excellent excuse for a party! (not that one needs an excuse…)

    and i have yet to hit an age where i look back and think “oh, to be that age again!” most of them you couldn’t possibly get me to go back to! but also, from the perspective of not the one doing the aging, i’ve always had a hopeless *thing* for women older than me. and, though i tend to note butches more, i must admit that age looks amazing on many femmes as well.

    but, as you say, it’s all well and good to talk about someone else doing it 😉

  10. p.s. i certainly vote that evenings are for cocktails

  11. Awesome end quote. And how the fuck do flat pillows result in less chins anyway?? Bah.

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