Yes, I should have gotten a flu shot, but I didn’t. Please don’t tell my mother. I told her I did just so she’d leave me alone.
Aging Lesson #1: No matter the age of your mother, LISTEN TO HER.
I figured that because I was feeling so low, I might as well watch television that met me in that space. So, I decided to take advantage of the need for mindless television and select some good not-so-real reality television.
Yes, I spent an entire day watching the Real Housewives of New Jersey, New York City and Miami.
My inability to change the channel or fall asleep despite a high fever was surprising. These shows are like soap operas without the memorized scripts and bad acting. In this world, when one woman punches another woman in the face (an event I watched unfold with the Miami wives), it is a wonderfully real punch. And the beauty is that all of us watching really wanted to punch the same woman.
Aging Lesson #2: No matter what your age, a good punch can be the best medicine.
After spending three hours listening to women scream at one another, I realized that even though our hearing dims with age, somehow I am less tolerant of loud. These women made Roseanne Bar sound like Georgette on The Mary Tyler Moore Show. I never did figure out exactly which topic would cause the escalation in volume, because it happened at such random times.[Housewife walks up to a lunch table to meet her friend for lunch.]
Housewife at Table: Oh MY GAWD, IT’S YOU!! HOW ARE YOU SWEETIE? YOU LOOK FABULOUS!!!
Who would think that this greeting requires the same volume as, “OH MY GAWD, YOU ARE NOT EFFING TALKING ABOUT MY FAMILY. ARE YOU EFFING TALKING ABOUT MY FAMILY?”
Aging Lesson #3: Once you hit 50, screaming is an unnecessary energy drain. Plus, you tend to start choking when you try to yell, which takes away your power. “YOU EFFIN TALKING ABOUT MY — cough–cough–cough– FAMILY?”
My final lesson came from the poison that many women inject into their faces. The land of Botox robbed every housewife of the expression that should have accompanied their anger. The positive thing was that every fight surprised me because they didn’t actually look mad and then BOOM, there was a punch. The bad part was that I had to listen really closely to the inane dialogue to understand why the escalation had occurred.
Aging Lesson #4: Botox might get rid of wrinkles, but it also robs your face of personality. Wrinkles are a wonderful map of all of your life experiences.
So, my day with the flu was not wasted. I sat down with the garish, loud Housewife Yodas, and they taught me all about age.
Because the producers of these shows have created hours about cat fights, the housewives do not get Dame statuses. But they did teach me all about aging, though not one of them would admit to it.
The housewives don’t age.