Also see A Female Perspective on Aging; Growing Older; For Women Only, Humor For Women Only, and Pretty is as Pretty Does.

Riddle: What's the difference between a terrorist and a menopausal woman? (answer at bottom)


When I'm an Old Lady

(Joanne Bailey Baxter, copyright © 1991)

When I'm an old lady, I'll live with my kids,
and make them so happy, just as they did.
I want to pay back all the joy they've provided,
returning each deed. Oh, they'll be so excited.
(When I'm an old lady and live with my kids.)

I'll write on the wall with reds, whites and blues,
and bounce on the furniture wearing my shoes.
I'll drink from the carton and then leave it out.
I'll stuff all the toilets, and oh, how they'll shout.
(When I'm an old lady and live with my kids.)

When they're on the phone and just out of reach,
I'll get into things like sugar and bleach.
Oh, they'll snap their fingers and then shake their head,
and when that is done I'll hide under the bed.
(When I'm an old lady and live with my kids.)

When they cook dinner and call me to meals,
I'll not eat my green beans or salads congealed.
I'll gag on my okra, spill milk on the table,
and when they get angry, run fast as I'm able.
(When I'm an old lady and live with my kids.)

I'll sit close to the TV, through the channels I'll click,
I'll cross both my eyes to see if they stick.
I'll take off my socks and throw one away,
And play in the mud until the end of the day.
(When I'm an old lady and live with my kids.)

And later in bed, I'll lay back and sigh,
and thank God in prayer and then close my eyes,
and my kids will look down with a smile slowly creeping,
and say with a groan. "She's so sweet when she's sleeping!"
(When I'm an old lady and live with my kids.)

When I'm a Little Old Lady

  (___) When I'm a little old lady
  /` `\ Then I'll live with my children
 / /"\ \ and bring them great joy.
\_/o o\_/ To repay all I've had
  ( _ ) from each girl and boy
  `\ /` I shall draw on the walls
 /\\V//\ and scuff up the floor;
/ /_ _\ \ Run in and out
\ \___/ / without closing the door.
 \/===\/ I'll hide frogs in the pantry,
  || || socks under my bed.
  || || Whenever they scold me,
 ||___|| I'll hang my head.
 |_____| I'll run and I'll romp,
   ||| always fritter away
  / Y \ The time to be spent
  `"`"` doing chores every day.
        I'll pester my children ___
   when they are on the phone. (___)
       As long as they're busy /` `\
    I won't leave them alone. / /"\ \
      Hide candy in closets, \_/o o\_/
            rocks in a drawer, ( _ )
  And never pick up my clothes `\ /`
              from the floor. /\\V//\
      Dash off to the movies / /_ _\ \
        and not wash a dish. \ \___/ /
     I'll plead for allowance \/===\/
              whenever I wish. || ||
    I'll stuff up the plumbing || ||
        and deluge the floor. ||___||
As soon as they've mopped it, |_____|
       I'll flood it some more. |||
         When they correct me, / Y \
        I'll lie down and cry, `"'"`
     ___ Kicking and screaming,
    (___) not a tear in my eye.
    /` `\ I'll take all their pencils
   / /"\ \ and flashlights, and then
  \_/o o\_/ When they buy new ones,
    ( _ ) I'll take them again.
    `\ /` I'll spill glasses of milk
   /\\V//\ to complete every meal,
  / /_ _\ \ Eat my banana and
  \ \___/ / just drop the peel.
   \/===\/ Put toys on the table,
    || || spill jam on the floor,
    || || I'll break lots of dishes
   ||___|| as though I were four.
   |_____| What fun I shall have,
     ||| what joy it will be to
    / Y \ Live with my children...
    `"`"` the way they lived with me!

When I'm an Old Lady

(Mary Ann Hopkins)

When I'm an old lady, I'll live with my son,
and make his life happy and filled with such fun.
I want to pay back all the joy he's provided,
returning each deed. Oh, he'll be so excited.
. . . when I'm an old lady and live with my son.

I'll write on the wall with red, white, and blue;
and bounce on the furniture wearing my shoes.
I'll drink from the carton and then leave it out.
I'll stuff all the toilets and oh, he will shout.
. . . when I'm an old lady and live with my son.

When he's on the phone and just out of reach,
I'll get into things like sugar and bleach.
Oh, he'll snap his fingers and then shake his head,
and when he is done I'll hide under the bed.
. . . when I'm an old lady and live with my son.

When my son's wife cooks dinner and calls me to meals,
I'll not eat my green beans or salads congealed.
I'll gag on my okra, spill milk on the table,
and when she gets angry, run fast as I'm able.
. . . when I'm an old lady and live with my son.

I'll sit close to the TV, thru the channels I'll click.
I'll cross both my eyes to see if they stick.
I'll take off my socks and throw one away,
and play in the mud until the end of the day.
. . . when I'm an old lady and live with my son.

And later, in bed, I'll lie back and sigh,
and thank God in prayer and then close my eyes;
and my son will look down with a smile slowly creeping,
and say with a groan, "she's so sweet when she's sleeping."
. . . when I'm an old lady and live with my son.

My Younger Days

(Maya Angelou)

When I was in my younger days,
I weighed a few pounds less,
I needn't hold my tummy in
to wear a belted dress.

But now that I am older,
I've set my body free;
There's the comfort of elastic
Where once my waist would be.

Inventor of those high-heeled shoes
My feet have not forgiven;
I have to wear a nine now,
But used to wear a seven.

And how about those pantyhose--
They're sized by weight, you see,
So how come when I put them on
The crotch is at my knee?

I need to wear these glasses
As the print's been getting smaller;
And it wasn't very long ago
I know that I was taller.

Though my hair has turned to gray
and my skin no longer fits,
On the inside, I'm the same old me,
It's the outside's changed a bit.

Signs of Menopause

Menopause Jewelry

My husband, being unhappy with my mood swings, bought me a mood ring so he would be able to monitor my moods.
We've discovered that when I'm in a good mood, it turns green. When I'm in a bad mood, it leaves a big red mark on his forehead.
Maybe next time he'll buy me a diamond . . .

Mid-life Blues

Mid-life is when the growth of hair on our legs slows down. This gives us plenty of time to care for our newly acquired mustache.

In mid-life women no longer have upper arms, we have wingspans. We are no longer women in sleeveless shirts, we are flying squirrels in drag.

The good news about mid-life is that the glass is still half-full, the bad news is that it won't be long before your teeth are floating in it.

Mid-life is when you can stand naked in front of a mirror and you can see your rear end without turning around.

Mid-life is when you go for a mammogram and realize that it is the only time someone will ask you to appear topless on film.

In mid-life you are still a HOT babe, but now it comes in flashes.

Mid-life is when you want to grab every firm young lovely in a tube top and scream "Listen honey, even the Roman Empire fell, and those will, too!"

Mid-life is when you go to the doctor and you realize you are now so old, you have to pay someone to look at you naked.

Mid-life brings with it the wisdom to know that life throws us curves and you're sitting on your biggest ones.

Mid-life is when you start to repeat yourself and your chins follow suit.

Mid-life is when you realize that if you were a dog, you'd need a control top flea collar.

Mid-life is when you look at your know-it-all, beeper-wearing teenage and think: "For this I have stretch marks??"

Mid-life is when you bounce (a lot), but you don't bounce back. (It's more like Splat!)

In mid-life your memory starts to go. In fact, the only thing you can still retain is water.

Mid-life means that your Body By Jake now includes Legs By Rand McNally . . . more red and blue lines than an accurately scaled map of Wisconsin.

Mid-life means that you become more reflective. You start pondering the 'big' questions. What is life? Why am I here? How much Healthy Choice ice cream can I eat before it's no longer a healthy choice?

But, mid-life also brings with it an appreciation for what is important. We realize that breasts sag, hips expand, and chins double, but our loved ones make the journey worthwhile.

Would any of you trade the knowledge you have now for the body you had back then? Maybe our bodies have to expand to hold all the wisdom and love we've acquired . . . anyway that's my philosophy and I'm sticking to it!

What I want in a man, original list:

What I want in a man, revised list (age 32):

What I want in a man, revised list (age 42):

What I want in a man, revised list (age 52):

What I want in a man, revised list (age 62):

What I want in a man, revised list (age 72):

Here Today, Gone Tomorrow

My thighs were stolen from me during the night of April 22nd a few years ago. It was just that quick. I went to sleep in my body and woke up with someone else's thighs. The new ones had the texture of cooked oatmeal. Who would have done such a cruel thing? Whose thighs were these? What happened to mine?
I spent the entire summer looking for them at pools and beaches. I had nightmares filled with cellulite. Finally, I resigned myself to living out my life in jeans and Sheer Energy pantyhose.
Then, just when my guard was down, the thieves struck again. My buns were next. I knew it was the same gang because they matched my new derrière--although badly attached at least 3 inches lower than the original--to the thighs they had stuck me with earlier. Now my rear complimented my legs lump for lump.
It was two years later when I realized my arms had been switched. One morning while fixing my hair, I watched horrified as the flesh of my upper arms swung to and fro with the motion of the hairbrush. This was getting scary. My body was being replaced, cleverly and fiendishly, a section at a time.
Age? Age had nothing to do with it. Age creeps up, unnoticed and intangible, something like maturity. No. I was being attacked, repeatedly and without warning.
For a while my attention was riveted to female upper arms. I studied them from every angle, being careful not to raise mine in public. In private I held them straight out and did endless circles that would have tightened my real arms but did nothing for these caricatures. In the end, in deepening despair, I gave up my T-shirts. What could they do to me next?
In short order, my boobs could hold a pencil. My poor neck disappeared more quickly than the Thanksgiving turkey it now reminded me of.
That's why I've decided to tell my story. I can't take on the medical profession by myself. Women of America, wake up and smell the coffee! That isn't really 'plastic' those surgeons are using. You know where they're getting those replacement parts, don't you?
The next time you suspect someone has had a face 'lifted', look again. Was it lifted from you? Check out those tummy tucks and raised buttocks. Look familiar? Are those your eyelids on that movie star? I think I finally may have found my thighs. I hope that famous model paid a really good price for them.

New Barbie

Introducing the new, improved MIDLIFE BARBIE: Now at long last, here are some NEW Barbie dolls to coincide with her and OUR aging gracefully. These are a bit more realistic . . .

Old Lady in the Mirror

A weird thing has happened. A strange old lady has moved into my house. I have no idea how she got in. I certainly did not invite her.

She manages to keep out of sight for the most part, but whenever I look in the mirror to check my appearance, there she is hogging the whole thing, completely obliterating my gorgeous face and body. I have tried screaming at her, but she just screams back.

I think she is stealing money from me. I go to the ATM and withdraw $100, and a few days later it's all gone. I certainly don't spend money THAT fast, And money isn't the only thing I think she is stealing. Food seems to disappear at an alarming rate--especially the good stuff like ice cream and cookies. But she'd better watch it, because she is really packing on the pounds. I suspect she realizes this, and to make herself feel better, she is tampering with my scale to make me think I am putting on weight, too.

She is also going into my closets and altering my clothes so they don't fit. She fiddles with my DVR so it does not record what I have carefully programmed.

She gets into my mail before I do, and blurs the print so I can't read it. And she has done something really sinister to the volume controls on my TV and phone. Now, all I hear are mumbles and whispers.

She has done other things--like make my stairs steeper, my vacuum cleaner heavier and all my knobs and faucets harder to turn. Lately, she has been fooling with my groceries before I put them away, applying glue to the lids, making it almost impossible for me to open the jars.

She has taken the fun out of shopping for clothes. When I try something on, she stands in front of the mirror and monopolizes it. She looks totally ridiculous in some of those outfits, plus, she keeps me from seeing how great they look on me.

Just when I thought she couldn't get any meaner, she proved me wrong. She came along when I went to get my picture taken for my driver's license, and just as the camera shutter clicked, she jumped in front of me! No one is going to believe that the picture of that old lady is me.

Answer to the War in Afghanistan

Take all American women who are in menopause, train us for a few weeks, outfit us with automatic weapons, grenades, gas masks, moisturizer with SPF15, Prozac, hormones, chocolate, and canned tuna. Drop us (parachuted, preferably) across the landscape of Afghanistan, and let us do what comes naturally.

Think about it. Our anger quotient alone, even when doing standard stuff like grocery shopping and paying bills, is formidable enough to make even armed men in turbans tremble.

We've had our children; we would gladly suffer or die to protect them and their future. We'd like to get away from our husbands, if they haven't left already. And for those of us who are single, the prospect of finding a good man with whom to share life is about as likely as being struck by lightning. We have nothing to lose.

We've survived the water diet, the protein diet, the carbohydrate diet, and the grapefruit diet in gyms and saunas across America and never lost a pound. We can easily survive months in the hostile terrain of Afghanistan with no food at all!

We've spent years tracking down our husbands or lovers in bars, hardware stores, or sporting events . . . finding bin Laden in some cave will be no problem.

Uniting all the warring tribes of Afghanistan in a new government? Oh, please . . . we've planned the seating arrangements for in-laws and extended families at Thanksgiving dinners for years, trust me, we understand tribal warfare.

Between us, we've divorced enough husbands to know every trick there is for how they hide, launder, or cover up bank accounts and money sources. We know how to find that money and we know how to seize it . . . with or without the government's help!

Let us go and fight. The Taliban hates women. Imagine their terror as we crawl like ants with hot-flashes over their godforsaken terrain.

I'm going to write my Congresswoman. You should, too!

Don't Mess With Mature Ladies

A mature (over 50) lady gets pulled over for speeding...
Woman: Is there a problem, Officer?
Officer: Ma'am, you were speeding.
Woman: Oh, I see.
Officer: Can I see your license please?
Woman: I don't have one. I lost if four years ago for drunk driving.
Officer: I see...Can I see your vehicle registration papers please.
Woman: I can't do that because I stole this car,
Officer: Stole it?
Woman: Yes, and I killed the owner.
Officer: You what?
Woman: His body is in the trunk if you want to see.
The Officer slowly backs away to his car and calls for back up.
Within minutes 5 police cars circle the car. A senior officer slowly approaches the car, clasping his half drawn gun.
Officer 2: Ma'am, could you step out of your vehicle please!
The woman steps out of her vehicle.
Woman: Is there a problem sir?
Officer 2: One of my officers told me that you have stolen this car and murdered the owner.
Woman: Murdered the owner?
Officer 2: Yes, could you please open your trunk, please.
The woman opens the trunk, revealing nothing but an empty trunk.
Officer 2: Is this your car, ma'am?
Woman: Yes, here are the registration papers.
The officer is quite stunned.
Officer 2: One of my officers claims that you do not have a driving license.
The woman digs into her handbag and hands her license to the officer.
The officer examines the license. He looks quite puzzled.
Officer 2: Thank you ma'am, one of my officers told me you didn't have a license, that you stole this car, and that you murdered the owner.
Woman: I bet the liar told you I was speeding, too.

Answer to riddle at top of page: You can negotiate with a terrorist.

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