Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Advanced beauty

My wife and I have lived in the same small city for more than 40 years.  We do travel and sometimes find a place we like, one that seems to have a good atmosphere, layout, scenery, economy, etc.  Then, we compare that place to where we live.  It's not a fair comparison, since our memories, our relatives, our familiarity have a big hometown advantage.  Then, we look at our town and realize that others visiting or just driving through, would probably not guess the good aspects that persuade us to live here.

Many of my friends are aging, just like me.  As a group, we have health problems, and energy problems.  We no longer walk as fast nor look as good in a bathing suit.  We have wrinkles and scowls and jowls.  Like our town, you might not guess the good aspects of us that persuade our mates and friends to live with us, to enjoy us.  Our society, our mass media and the advertising industry related to the media all stress youth, sexual ripeness, and that sort of natural beauty.  Children and young people can have such alluring skin that it actually seems to glow.  Our skin doesn't glow.  It sags.  Young people have attractive hair and are targeted for all sorts of hair styles, embellishments, lotions and tools.  Many of us have no hair.  If we do have a little, it is wispy and insignificant.

Our group realizes that the next step for us is assisted-living grade beauty and attractiveness: canes, walkers, drooling, tremors, limps, wheelchairs, hearing aids, etc.  We are working on some of those already.  However, like the quiet and unobtrusive beauty of our town, we have quiet and unobtrusive beauty, too.  If you can't see it, get together with one of us.  If you confer with a man, watch closely when one of the women in our group comes by.  He will brighten, smile, come a little more to life.  If you confer with a woman, watch her eyes as she spots one of the men in our group.  She, too, will brighten, become more alert.  She may pat her hair.  

Our group understands biology.  We know that we are no longer in the baby-making business.  We grasp that too much panting would make us gasp for air.  But still, we have eyes for each other.  We can see seven decades of experience and patience and achievement and grace in the faces and bodies in our group.  While we appreciate good cheer and good regard from the youngsters, we realize that we need each other to truly see the beauty we have. 

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