Enthusiasm, Not Anti-Wrinkle Cream

Middle-aged women have attracted my attention lately, perhaps because I am middle aged. Astounding is the length to which middle-aged women go in the hope of reclaiming even a hopeful fragment of their younger selves.

In a drugstore aisle recently, looking for some simple hand lotion (Oh no, are my hands dry because I am middle aged, or just because winter humidity is low? Do people notice how dry my hands are?), I encountered a distraught woman frantically reading the labels of one package after another of various promises of youth. Unable to resist, I leaned her way and suggested that she not worry and choose a lesser-cost one because they all worked about the same. She immediately smiled and looked more relaxed, and I may have added more youth to her in that moment than what all of the magic bottles together could have done.

If I really believed that women did this for themselves and enjoyed the end result, I'd leave them alone and not comment. But the data suggest otherwise; they are trying to impress others and they never rest contentedly. How could they when paying $42.99 for a tiny jar of transient moisturizer?

We are all getting older, precious few of us are in as good a condition as we were twenty years ago, and all of us exhibit some level of visual wear. So no use fishing for feigned praise for lack of aging and no use trying to reverse it with pseudopharmawizardry. Instead, carpe diem, give up the fight and the stress that eats you faster from the inside than UV cooks you from the outside, and do something truly pleasurable: have enthusiastic sex.

You want your middle-aged partner to still like looking at you after all these years? Then be enthusiastic. Subtle wrinkles are invisible in dim light, anyway. And when your partner sees a women who still wants to play, he sees youth. Trust me on this one.

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