Despite my constant carping on the atrocities of aging, I continue to look for reasons to be grateful about being older. A recent newspaper article prompted this one.
The story cited these survey results: One-fourth of teens and one-third of young adults admitted to “sexting,” or sending nude photos or videos of themselves by cell phone.
Isn’t it wonderful that, at the age of sixty-something, we’re not remotely tempted to do this? Think about it—the horror, the horror.
And who would we send these unsightly images to? Certainly not our spouses. They get enough of the jiggles, lumps, and bumps morning and evening. And if we’re single, do we really think we can tempt a potential partner with an artfully posed veiny, splotchy corpus vile? (Don’t bother looking it up. It means “A person or thing fit only to be the object of an experiment.”) I didn’t mean this literally. I just wanted a fancy way to say “a body we wouldn’t want the world—and certainly not a would-be suitor—to be able to view, enlarge, and gasp at.”
I’ll continue to have my photo taken while wearing my most flattering outfit, which is not my birthday suit. What’s flattering is becoming more specific every year. I still expose my neck, but how long will it be before I start tying on a colorful scarf or bulky jewelry to conceal the cragginess and lines? And that reminds me of my late mother, who would put her hand in front of her neck when posing, much like an ingénue of early films. We teased her about it and she took it with good nature, but if she wasn’t wearing a turtleneck or neckscarf, that hand would be splayed below her chin in almost every photo. I try not to emulate my mother in actions that we laughed at, but even if I wanted to, I don’t think the back of my hand would be a suitable substitute for an old neck. But that’s another story.