Thursday, October 29, 2015

The Aging Face

Looking in the mirror has not been getting any funner as the decades add up. The actual mirror, not the metaphorical mirror -- that one has never been friendlier and more forgiving. But those are some serious "Duke Ellington" bags under my eyes that I see in the actual one.

Here's some strong writing about the aging of faces from Alyssa Pelish at the Smart Set website:
As I considered the changes in my own face, my eyes were soon drawn to the lines in other people’s faces, as if searching for a benchmark of normalcy, a point of comparison. What I discovered, though, was the variability of a phenomenon I had never before bothered to notice. Some brows, I now saw, were entirely furrowed, really ploughed-in deep parallel lines that never even began to fade when the eyebrows lowered, as if that fairy Queen Mab who hectors sleepers had driven a team of oxen back and forth over the course of many nights. On the face of a still pink-cheeked colleague, the three vertical slashes across the brow seemed to me like scars, the marks of some violent accident. Others, still, bore only faint traces, the sole suggestion of age on a youthful face — and my eyes would flicker back to these less certain marks, waiting to see if they did in fact belie age in a person who otherwise seemed untouched by time. So many faces appeared more cobwebbed than lined, while others seemed momentarily smudged — as if the vaguest impression of their own palm had remained upon their forehead. How unfixed the face was. How perpetually the lines of age would continue to shape it.

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