Imagine stumbling across a graveyard of lost words, delicacies the world squirreled away and forgot to retrieve when spring came. The Phrontistery is such a place, offering delicious nuggets to savour each day on April's A-Z journey. Let's eat.
ACRASIAL (adj): Ill-regulated; ill-tempered
When I was younger, I used to look forward to being elderly. It seemed a time when I could indulge my anti-social whims with impunity, free from the tyranny of good manners and make-up. I had grand plans of driving 80 km/hr in the fast lane on the expressway, meandering through the grocery store express line with too many items, and railing against the good-for-nothing world to everyone around me.
The seniors of my limited acquaintance were relishing these perks of advanced years, so I was surprised to read a study that suggested they were an unusually acrasial bunch. According to researchers, people get happier with age. It's not a coincidence that silver hair is a rare sight in the prison yard.
Since it appears I'm unlikely to lose all sense of common courtesy and turn into a menace of society after all, that just leaves the make-up. One of the best parts of aging must be the freedom from measurement against an impossible standard of beauty. At 80, you can be considered a pin-up if you've put on matching clothes and a little lip gloss. You can enjoy a blue sky day at the beach in your bathing suit without worrying about anyone comparing you to a Victoria's Secret model.
Looking at the wreckage of my figure after two babies in the last three years, it strikes me how lucky I am that the only standard I've ever been shooting for is "reasonably attractive." After an unfortunate ugly duckling phase from age 8-17, I enjoyed a brief few years where guys actually whistled at me on the street.
But I always knew that I was no competition for the silky smooth haughty blondes stalking past me on campus and in the club. An escalating eating disorder was arrested in its tracks when I saw a girl so tiny that I knew I'd have to remove ribs to look like her. Since I don't like playing when there's no hope of winning, that was the end of my hunger headache days.
When I watch The Real Housewives of Anywhere, I feel sorry for the women trying so desperately and unsuccessfully to freeze time, with no end in sight. It must be awful to have your entire identity and self-esteem invested in an inevitably fading beauty. I'm glad I live in a world where I'm allowed to age with happiness and grace, wrinkles soft in the sun.