It all started when I was watching Big Bang Theory and I saw Sheldon in his 73 shirt.
I was born in 1973, so I ordered myself a copy of Sheldon’s, just for fun. It is reminiscent of Dr, Seuss’s Thing 1 and Thing 2 shirts, so when I wear it to a gig, the bass player calls me Thing 73.
Well, last week was my mom’s 73rd birthday. I thought it would be cute if I was wearing the 73 shirt when I picked her up for brunch. She chuckled. When I got home I snapped a selfie of just me. Now I don’t wear makeup, but I took one look at that thing, slapped some concealer on the dark circles under my eyes, and retook the selfie.
I posted the selfie on Facebook with the following text: “Went to Acre with Mom for her 73rd birthday.”
I thought all my Facebook friends knew me well enough to recognize me, but there’s one woman I’ve never met in real life who commented, “Wow I never would’ve guessed her age! Hope I look that good at 73!”
Okay, folks, I’m FORTY-FIVE.
There’s a reason I don’t use a picture of myself for my Facebook profile pic, and the reason is that when I did use my photo, and when I posted my feminist comments on public pages, I’d sometimes receive a disparaging remark about my looks from a man-troll.
So I already struggled with my self-esteem, I mean what woman doesn’t in our society just a little? I mean, I don’t mind being 45 and I don’t mind looking 45, but it doesn’t feel great to be asked if I qualify for the senior discount. But no! I was going to be part of informing people! I was going to be the change!
So I went to Twitter. Twitter, for those who don’t know, is where you can fix society with one tweet.
I wisely posted my picture again with the following text. “Took this of me for my mom’s 73rd. Someone said she looked great for 73. I want to hide away, but no. This is what 45 looks like. #NoMakeup #NoDye #NoBotox.”
I realized the #NoMakeup part wasn’t strictly true, but with only so many characters allowed on Twitter, why quibble?
There. Fixed society.
Logged in the next morning. Someone retweeted me! Here we go! I clicked to watch society changing! I clicked to see history in the making! I clicked for real women everywhere!
There was my tweet. There was my picture. There was the retweeter’s quote. “This is what a no-makeup person looks like at 73!”
I give up. I’m just going to tell people I’m 73. Don’t I look amazing?