Middle Age a Hairy Issue
by John Norberg, humor columnist s

I felt apprehensive the other day.

I told my wife I was thinking about having a mid-life crisis.

Wife: "Again? You've already had several mid-life crises. You are over your limit. You're really only supposed to have one. If you're going to have any more, it'll have to be a late mid-life crisis. Or maybe you should think about having an early old age crisis."

Actually, I don't think I've even reached mid-life yet. I think I'm still in my mid-to-late younger years.

Middle age isn't something you see in yourself. Middle age is something you see in other people.

Middle age is what you admit to when you're actually starting to get old.

The start of middle age is difficult to define.

But here are some possibilities I've considered:

Middle age begins when you start frequently misplacing your glasses.

Middle age begins when you need to wear your glasses to see well enough to find your glasses.

Middle age begins when you discover you are actually wearing the glasses you're looking for.

Middle age begins when you find yourself hooked on the History Channel.

Middle age begins when you spend a half-hour enjoying a Time-Life cable TV infomercial for greatest hit music from the 1950s. You remember every song. And you call the number and buy.

Middle age begins when you tell people not to call you at home too late. And you mean 9 p.m.

Middle age begins when you realize your kids are starting to get middle aged.

Middle age begins when your doctor is younger than your kids.

Middle age begins when you notice your friends have gray hair.

Middle age begins when a great weekend is built around a long nap.

Last month while we were traveling out of state I turned on the local morning news to get the weather.

What I saw was shocking.

It was a news story about men trying to impress women by getting hot wax treatments to remove unwanted hair. At least some women have done this for years. But men?

The men were getting hot wax treatments to remove unwanted hair from their chests.

I think chest hot waxing is for younger guys. Older men aren't worried about removing hair on their chest. Dying it, maybe. But not removing it.

Older men have different concerns.

So I think I've discovered the true marker for the start of middle age.

Middle age for a man begins when he hears about hot wax treatments for removing unwanted hair.

And he wonders if it will work on his ears.

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