If you could live to be 90 and for the last 60 years of it...have either the mind of a 30 year old, or the body of a 30 year old, which would you choose?
This was the question that popped into my head early this Monday morning in the little space of time between drinking the first coffee and feeling the effects of it. Generally, I come up with about 5 - 10 of these philosophical doozies a day. True story. I would never dream of using a writing prompt from the internet. Pffft, that's crazy. These things need to happen organically . Usually I get them during my (scheduled) time of staring and musing (amusingly).
Okay, fine - way to see right through me, Sherlock. I used a writing prompt. Because, yes. I'm often drawing a blank. Sometimes things are so vacuous up there that when an idea makes an appearance, all the other voices get so excited. They smile excitedly at each other, whispering - it's here! It's here! They primp and fuss and put out the good China. Honestly, if I waited for writing ideas to happen organically, I’d only be posting once or twice every three years. I don't have the exact stats, but I'm guessing it takes a little more than that to maintain a blog.
So back to the question. It was a lot of Math for a Monday. 90, 60, 30...what now? But by the second or third cup of coffee, the answer was clear.
The mind, for sure. Definitely the mind, right? Then again...
I woke up frantically patting the bed in search of my index finger this morning. I was convinced it fell off during the night, thanks to some strange, Thai-food induced dreams. When I got up, I looked into the mirror. The lingering effects of Thai-food (puffy, dark-circled eyes), the stress of losing a finger in the night (puffy, dark circled eyes), the general Mondayness of it all (puffy, dark circled eyes), had me reaching for the under-eye concealer and trying to block out memories of recent conversations...
Stranger: Wow! I thought you and your daughters were sisters! Until you turned around and…(smile dissolves. Did not think this one through)
6 year old niece: Are you a grandma?
Mother: You look tired. Anyway, it doesn’t matter what you look like, what matters is what's on the inside.
Sister/bestfriend: You look like death. Get thee to Sephora.
Sephora. Any men reading this might just be unfamiliar, so I will clarify. Sephora is a make-up store/mystical dreamland that can turn you into a beautiful princess (or a drag queen, if that's where you're at). Without getting too specific...you should all be just as grateful for Sephora as we women are (and drag queens) (and proud but straight metro-sexual wearers of guy-liner). For those who don't wear make-up? It's okay, we can still be friends. Just know that at some point I will definitely suggest at least a little mascara. I'll try not to (but I will fail).
Whenever I open the little tube of under-eye concealer, I raise my (puffy, darkly circled) eyes and thank God for Sephora (obviously God was involved here...the miracles that happen there? The biblical name?) I hope that it will never (ever) go out of stock because I just can’t ask for help from the children who work there. They play with all the pretty toys and colours all day, and don’t understand the “need” for under-eye anything, unless it is glitter or ironic blue eye-shadow. When I once asked the "Concealer Expert Associate" about one that maybe doesn’t slide unappealingly into your wrinkles by mid-morning, she scrunched up her cute little nose. Wrinkles? she said, perplexed. Nevermind…
I don't know now! Body or mind?? It really is an annoying question though, right? Kind of like, what if you were a camel? Would retaining water be a concern or a goal? I mean, seriously, writing-prompt internet thingy?? A thought-provoking question should at least be something reasonable! We are all going to age anyway. Except for that rare disease where those poor kids turn into old people with the minds of children. It's probably a safe bet that you don't have that. You might, though. I mean, you know…check with your doctor, of course. I asked mine and she “claims” that finding a grey hair at my age is not a clear sign of me having it. Whatever.
The truth is that I just don’t want to think about reaching age 90 no matter what part of me is still 30. I really just want to think about getting to Tuesday of this week. And when even that is a little much, I want to think about making it till lunch. Then I want to pause and think about lunch for awhile. Then I want to think about supper. Then I think about what kind of snack might nicely bridge the two. Then I think about snacks. Then I get a snack. It’s really good. I love snacks. What were we talking about?
So, my final answer…body or mind? I don’t know. A little of both, I guess. It would largely depend on how closely I resemble a raccoon that day. Besides, there are other options. I could just own it? Be the age I happen to feel that day. Get out there and be all raccoon, who cares. Raccoons are industrious, have cute little people-hands and eat whatever garbage they want. It’s not that bad.
So here’s to lunch. Hope to see you there…(I’ll be the raccoon on the bench outside of Sephora, scarfing back the New York Fries).