Wednesday, January 10, 2007

I Feel Bad About My Neck (copy)

By the time you read this article, I will have added a zero to my existence on earth, and become middle aged. Fortunately, I have spent most my life laughing: unfortunately, I have the lines to prove it. I thought I was okay with the milestone—well, until I read Nora Ephron’s new book, I Feel Bad about My Neck.

Apparently, the neck of a woman begins to morph around the age of forty-five—a magical time when v-necks mysteriously vanish and turtlenecks, mandarin collars and scarves appear. Remember the funny scene in Something’s Gotta Give when Jack Nicholson asks Diane Keaton, “What’s with the turtlenecks? I mean it’s the middle of summer.”

We know Diane’s secret: young, smooth skin becomes, turkey waddles, Greek columns, or swollen butterflies as we age. My neck is exhibiting the early stages of what I like to call the classical period. Picture a large, marble, Palladian column with polished surface, such as found in Venice, Italy. Now, add thousands of years of sea breezes and summer suns. The result, a chalky pillar with huge gaps between the sections, becomes less classical and more shabby-chic.

Considering the options, wearing clothing to downplay the area is a viable solution. Author Ephron continues to say the offending neck cannot be “fixed” without a full-blown face-lift. Why not skip the expensive procedure and buy a stylish choker instead?

For twenty weeks this book has remained on the bestsellers list for a good reason. Ephron’s point of view on aging is priceless. The neck business is just the first chapter. There are 15 chapters dealing with aging, parenting annoyances, and cooking disasters. Her chapter on cookbook history is lost on me, but I thoroughly enjoyed the imaginary conversations she carries on with the chefs. Just what would you serve Craig Claiborne if he came to dinner?

If the Ephron name sounds familiar, it is because she co-wrote movie favorites, When Harry Met Sally and Sleepless in Seattle. She also wrote the book and screen play, Heartburn, which told of her divorce to Watergate journalist, Carl Bernstein.

Don’t let the title scare you away. This book can induce laughs from a variety of woman, no matter their age. As my new age indicates, I’m pretty much on the downhill slide, so why not buckle-up, raise my flabby arms, and go down laughing?


Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday! So how did you celebrate the big day? Hopefully with lots of books!

Anonymous said...

I confess that I have never read a tome written by Ms. Ephron. However I may at some point.

maggie moran said...

Iliana, it's Happy Bookday for me!

Paul, she is one funny woman. ;)

Anonymous said...

I agree wholeheartedly with the "Happy Birthday!" wishes...also, thanks for the great review. I loved the novel "Heartburn" but have not yet gotten to this one. I look forward to it!

Lotus Reads said...

lol, what a wonderful review! Guess, we can't avoid aging, so we might as well get a few laughs out of it! :) Must hunt down the book.

maggie moran said...

Nonanon, thanks for the b-day wishes. She also gives a little movie trivia. I didn't have to read the lines from When Harry Met Sally. Knew 'em verbatim! :D

Lotus, she has a chapter on "consider the alternatives," a phrase that pops up everytime you say the slightest remark about getting older. I got a lot of CtAs at the partee. ;)

Anonymous said...

I've heard a lot about this book. I'll have to put on a turtleneck and go out looking for it!

maggie moran said...

LOL Lynne! You will look very Keatonish. ;)

Booklogged said...

Happy Bookday and/or Birthday! I saw the author on Oprah. She was very down-to-earth and funny. Will put this on my TBR list. Very nice review.