Fayette County News

Fayette County


I feel bad about my neck, too

Lee St. John, a retired educator, knows better but rarely plays by the rules. Author of four paperbacks and ebooks, she also narrates her own audio books. Her newest book, “SHE’S A KEEPER! Cockamamie Memoirs of a Hot Southern Mess” is due out this year.

OK, girlfriends – let’s get real.
If you are over 50 and haven’t read Nora Ephron’s book, “I Feel Bad About My Neck,” you should. Thank goodness someone is writing about one of the many things that are bothering some of us girls of a certain age.
Let me start off by saying first of all, after 40, I started needing reading glasses. I guess that’s about right. That’s about middle ground, maybe 40-plus more good years. This was about halfway through. My first magnification was .75 on the scale. But now over the last 20-plus years, that number has risen. I don’t know how high the vision number goes – I’ve seen the number four, but I think I am in the threes.
Next it was the aches and pain commercials. I can remember in my 40’s a commercial for a product that promised to reduce muscle aches. A woman that looked just a little older than me was hiking and afterward she commented on her muscle ache and recommended Advil – or was it Aleve? I don’t remember that part because I was so shocked at someone of “our” age needing something for pain. I remember thinking, “What is she talking about? That’s used for headaches.” Then it happened. Shortly after turning 50 I was taking something, too. I thought, “Oh, now I get it!”
Then came the neck. I read Ephron’s book about 10 years ago for the first time because her author picture caught my attention on the back jacket sleeve. She has a turtleneck sweater pulled up and over her chin obviously hiding her neck. I didn’t get that either. Neck? What was she talking about? She was too young to have a neck that bothered her. I mean, that’s for OLD people. She was 12 years older than me and I was in my early 50’s, so she was still young. And then, within a couple of years, mine dropped.
And it wasn’t pretty.
Being a little plump, mine was what I considered the first of two kinds of necks: a pig neck or a chicken neck. It doesn’t matter which one you have, because neither look good. You can’t win for losing. Chicken-neck people are usually thin people who look great in clothes but because they are so thin, when they get older, you see every crease and crevice in their skin and especially their neck. It looks like ties on a railroad track.
Then you have the pig neck people. These are the ones with extra weight where the weight settles in the neck. I try to hide my neck. My favorite pose is placing my hand or hands under my chin as though I am pondering something. Pig neck people really can’t hide their neck because the fat spreads out into the jowls and up towards the ear.
There are pros and cons to being either chicken neck or pig neck. The cons are they are both ugly. Whereas the chicken neck girl is thin and on the whole looks great in clothes, the pig neck person might have pretty and softer skin because there are not many wrinkles in the face because of all the collagen.
I have lost some weight lately and now I am seeing more chicken neck and I am not prepared! I didn’t know to put on all the wrinkle creams at bedtime. I thought I was always going to have collagen!
It’s a lose/lose situation. Tell me I’m not right.
Next time, let’s talk extra skin arm flapping that we thought we’d never have either.