Tuesday, July 15, 2008

This Day and Age

For most of my life, people have thought I looked younger than I actually am. I was a scrawny, late blooming kid, so I was almost always mistaken as a tween in my teens. My twenties were filled with continual cardings at bars and restaurants. Even when I hit 30, a woman in Hawaii mistook me for a teenager—thinking I was my older sister’s daughter.

But lately, my years have been catching up with me.

When I was 29, people thought I was 23. Recently I asked a stranger to guess my age and he said 29…a mere 3 years younger than my real age…and really I think just an attempt to flatter. 26 would’ve been a fantastic compliment, 29 seemed like he just didn’t want to say 30.

On Saturday, I was hanging out at my sister’s house playing Wii Fit with my nieces. I had never played before, so the game took me through a series of fitness assessments in order to set up my player profile. First it asked for my birth date and height. Then I had to stand on the balance board thingee and it weighed me and calculated my body mass index. So far, so good.

When it asked me to demonstrate my balance skills, I thought I had it in the bag. My normal, standing-still balance was almost perfectly centered. However, when I had to shift to match up with some moving bars on the TV screen, I was definitely far from skilled.

Based upon my performance and the previous body stats, the game calculated my “Wii age” as 51. Fifty-one! Twenty-one years older than my actual age.

“I want a do-over!” I shrieked over my nieces’ laughter.

So they let me go through the setup process again. And this time, my age was determined to be 37. Still 5 years too high… My sister hopped on the balance board after me, determined to beat my score. She is 10 years older than I am, but after she went through similar tests and exercises, the game aged her at 34—8 years younger than her real age. What the hizell?

It’s weird when you still feel like a kid inside but you see saggy tummy skin and crows feet staring back at you from the mirror. And now, thanks to the wonders of technology, we have video games to contribute to our lackluster age self esteem.

The same day I played Wii, my sister and I went hiking with my 13-year old niece, Nanny Dobie (Note: That is not her real name but when she was 2 years old, she called herself that for a period of time). We were complaining about the cellulite gene in our family, when Nanny piped up to my sister and said, “What do you care? You’re married—it doesn’t matter what you look like anymore.”

Ah the sage musings of youth. Maybe I’ll keep the wrinkles, back fat and further-developed grey matter after all…


Anonymous said...

So when I did WiiFit - it calculated me at "60" - I guess you and I are closer in age than I thought! And besides - aren't you the one that says "60" is the new
"40"! Maybe you would want to post your "tummy face" photo from
4th of July!

Nanny Dobie said...

Fyi I did not just say, "What do you care?" I followed that by saying that she doesn't have to date anymore, and it's not like dad's gonna divorce her for having cellulite or something. Because I would never just not care what I looked like anymore after I got married.

Anonymous said...

I'm glad I don't have to worry about cellulite!

Wow, that was awkward said...

Once you hit your 30s, I see no problem with sucking at video games.

Your niece is wise. However she may be on to something having to do with those ginormous divorce rates!!

geekhiker said...

Okay, let me get this straight. You're feeling bad because of a silly computer program testing balance on a video game console? Let's see here: you've rock-hopped up creeks before without breaking your skull open. I'd like to see the Wii do that. Hell, I'd like to see the PROGRAMMER of the silly thing do that.

Trust me, you're 'lookin good, don't worry about it, move along. :)

laura said...

you're young at heart...that's all that counts...for everything else there's botox and liposuction. kidding of course..you look great! but I know what you mean...it's depressing to feel youthful on the inside and then catch a glimpse of gray hair and wrinkles in the mirror and realize you're getting older! Look how good big sis and amomymous look...you've got nothing to worry about.

Lara said...

That's like when Tiina and I went to Disneyland and someone asked if I was her mom...she's 29! REAllY?! WTF?! That would make me 45 if I had her when I was 16, when I started being able to have kids :)

Anita said...

The Wii is one of the best inventions ever! Ben and I always talk about having a website called Wii-njuries (probably taken already) ever since he broke my sister's ceiling fan after an attempt at a hard serve in tennis. Your post is definitely categorized as a "Wii-njury" of the ego. :)

The Coconut Diaries said...

I think your niece has a future in talking suicides off ledges

Mel Heth said...

AMOMymous - I almost posted the tummy picture but I thought it would scare all of my readers and they'd never come back.

Nanny - I'm glad we raised you right. Now go get back on your balance board.

Wow TWA - Yes, there probably is a correlation between the rising obesity rates and the divorce rates in this country...

Geekhiker - Uh why are you single again? Seriously?

Laura - I wish I could get on the Bochelism bandwagon - it'd make this whole aging thing a whole lot easier...although I wouldn't be able to move my face to be happy about it...

Lara - I'm sure that person had like 20/180 vision or something. Or they were drunk.

Anita - I LOVE that idea! I bet there are tons of people with Wii-njuries! Pride and physical. You should do it!!

Coconutdiaries - Hahaha I know, right? She knows just how to make us all feel better.

You've Got To Be Kidding Me said...

I'm 37 and unmarried. Remind me not to go to your niece for therapy!