Curiosity? Killed NO ONE.

cat-1159540_640They say curiosity killed the cat, and quite frankly, I couldn’t disagree more.  As a matter of fact I’m pretty sure “they” only came up with that expression to keep the cat from asking too many questions.  Don’t you think?  Questions such as:  What do you mean, you’re ripping out my fingernails?  What gives you the right to deny me the joy of childbirth?  Who are you to tell me I can NEVER GO OUTSIDE FOR THE REST OF MY GODFORSAKEN LIFE??

These are the questions I’d be asking, if I were a cat.  I mean, anyone would, if they had any sense at all.  It’s like I always tell my kids:  the one who asks the most questions knows the most.  And while it’s true that ignorance is bliss, let’s face it – it’s also still ignorance.  Which I, for one, cannot abide.

All of which leads me to my recent mammogram.  I know.  Right now you might be thinking, wait, what?  How?  And that’s good, because it shows that you, too, are a curious person.  So, let me explain.

For the uninitiated, I will begin by telling you that a mammogram hurts.  Rather intensely.  The good news is that the pain only lasts for about five to seven seconds and then ahhhhhh, the pressure of the plates is released and you are free.  Repeat 4 times and you’re done, in routine situations; best case scenario, you’re in and out in under 10 minutes.

So.  Like I said, I went in for my annual mammogram a few days ago and somehow, the technician and I got on the topic of people fainting during the procedure.  Because apparently they have.  “God,” I said, imagining.  “That would be horrible.”

“It is,” she agreed.  “Now hold your breath – good.  Relax.  Let’s switch sides.”

“Even worse, though?”  I said.  “Would be if you fainted.  Like while the plates were pressed together, and I was stuck here.”

“That would be bad.  Can you move your arm up a little?”

“Seriously, think of it!  Or, okay, let’s say you had a massive heart attack.”

“Oh, wow . . . thanks a lot!”  The technician seemed a little disturbed, perhaps because I’d asked her to envision her own untimely demise while at the helm of a giant imaging device.  I mean, no one wants to die at work.  Which I totally get.

“Okay, sorry . . . not a massive heart attack.  Just something that has you unconscious on the ground, and I’m stuck here like this.  OWWWWWWWW.”

“Someone would hear you screaming,” she assured me.  “But, I guess it could still be pretty bad, if the door was locked.”

“Oh, God,” I said.  “Is it?  Is the door locked?  What would I do?

“Here,” she said.  “I’ll show you.  See this foot pedal?”

And thus it came to be that I learned how to escape a mammography machine, in case of emergency.  Granted, this would be a pretty rare emergency.  But still, if it happens?   I will not dangle there in excruciating pain, screaming until someone breaks in to set me free.  Or worse, have a massive heart attack myself, brought on by the sheer agony.  No, I will release myself, tie my robe, and then perform CPR on the technician, who will later tell anyone who will listen how my curiosity saved her life.

Well, I mean, once I learn CPR.  Maybe I’ll change the story so she just needed smelling salts.  Or to breathe into a paper bag.  The moral of the story here might be that it’s good I never went into the medical field.

Just kidding.  That’s not the moral of the story.  The moral of the story is that if I were you, I’d keep me away from your cats.  Because, if I get a minute alone with little Fluffy?  (And if I’m not too afraid to get close, see this post for more details on that), I will tell him, listen here, kitty.  Don’t believe the hype – curiosity will never kill you.

On the contrary, and particularly if you are ever getting a mammogram and the technician faints dead away – curiosity will SET YOU FREE.

Oh, and for those of you that are still with me, another interesting fact I’ve recently learned is that the lead blanket the dentist puts on you for x-rays?  It is not bulletproof.

You’re welcome.

She Looks Good For Her Age


“Well, maybe you should quit coloring it, then.”

This is what my husband Jim said to me not long ago, in response to my own announcement that “I don’t have enough hair for that.”  I don’t remember what “that” was and it doesn’t matter anyway.  The point is that he was trying to be helpful by suggesting that a noxious chemical bath every 2-3 months might not be the thing for thinning hair.  He was also indirectly saying, “I will love you even if your hair is the color of a pile of dead kindling.”  Which was nice.  It really was.

Here is something else Jim said to me recently:  “Christie Brinkley looks good for her age!”

So.  Right.

This statement tells me so many things, not the least of which being that Jim clearly does not understand how hair color works.  Or aging.

Especially aging.

She looks pretty good for 75!
She looks pretty good for 75!

I’m fine with getting older, I really am, especially given that my only other choice is to be dead.  It’s so weird to me that people complain about aging; I mean, it seems so ungrateful.  Doesn’t it?  Look at Betty White; she never complains.  She is 94 years old and never quits smiling, as far as I can tell, which is why one of my fondest wishes is to age just like Betty White.  I’m not really a natural smiler, but I don’t think that will be a problem because I’m pretty sure one can radiate enthusiasm and good cheer without making awkward faces all day long.  Just ask my husband, he’s always remarking on how I am the cheeriest and happiest person he knows.  Just kidding.  He’s never said that.  Quite honestly he’s probably never thought it, either.  I’m the thinker in our marriage, he’s more of the eye-roller, but I can understand that.  Because sometimes even I have a hard time caring about what I am saying.

That's my idol on the left.
That’s my idol on the left.

Anyway.  One of the things that keeps me happy as I get older is the knowledge that even though Amy Poehler is a few months younger than me, both Tina Fey and Melissa McCarthy are older.  Also Sandra Bullock and Jennifer Aniston.  Of course, as the years go by I will undoubtedly grow to look older than all of them, because that’s the way it goes when you’re not famous.  Also because, I don’t know, I’m kind of nervous about plastic surgery.  Not that I’ll never try it, but I’m very hesitant – first of all, because people have died during plastic surgery, but just as importantly because, what if it turns out bad?  Or even if it turns out okay, what if you hate the result for complicated and unforeseen reasons of your own?

Me and my squad.
Me and my squad.

Plus, Jim is pretty much against artificiality all around.  He says he wants us to “grow old together,” and by that I know he means “look old together.”  Leading me to another thing he doesn’t understand, which is that a man almost never looks good “for his age.”  You ever hear anyone say that about Tom Selleck?  No.  He just looks good, and I know it, because I’ve said it myself.  Jon Bon Jovi “looks good,” too.  Some people say Tom Cruise looks good, and there I do not agree, because in order to “look good” I think you have to actually “be human.”  And it’s pretty clear that Tom Cruise is not a real person at all but instead some type of L. Ron Hubbard science fair project.  Like Frankenstein’s monster but with better hair and skin tone.

An early prototype.
An early prototype.

So, fine – Jim and I will grow old together and look old together.  And I’m cool with that, I really am, because like I said, I’m going the Betty White route.  So, no, you will not find me posing on a sailboat in a bikini when I’m 60, or even when I’m 50.  Probably not when I’m 45 either.  You will never find me with luxurious golden hair extensions, because I am afraid that similar to acrylic fingernails, they would ruin the hair that I do have.  If I’m really lucky, you will find me at age 94, snuggling up with my great-grandchildren and leaving bright pink lipstick marks on their little faces.  I will have countless untold things to laugh about.  And I’ll still be getting my hair colored every 2-3 months, and probably “set” once a week.  Or who knows, maybe I’ll just say oh, whatever, and start wearing a wig, which is fine too.  Because if you ask me, there’s more than one way to look good for your age.