Everybody complains about their license and passport photos. You stare into the camera, don’t smile and end up looking like you’re being booked for a felony. My friend believes in putting her best face forward, especially when it’s a photo of herself that she has to show to someone else on a fairly regular basis. With all ID photos there are some accessory restrictions (no sunglasses on head, no baseball hat), but there is no law that says you can’t look good and wear makeup. So in keeping with this, she proceeded.
My friend—who I also mention in my book I OPRAHED—who prepared for her driver’s license photo with fresh makeup and a turtleneck to camouflage her neck recently had to renew her passport. She invoked the same philosophy as she did with her license photo. She’d have to look at this photo for many years, and she was in her very late 60s. The new passport picture would last for 10 years, at which point she would be so old she simply would no longer care.
This time she went to the Lancome counter at Dillards for a professional makeup job. Then she went to her hairdresser for a blowdry of her newly highlighted hair. Again, she chose a high neck shirt of a flattering pastel color. She looked in the mirror approvingly before setting out for the photo at her local post office. The first shot did not make the cut and she rejected it. The second was phenomenal; even the clerk said, “It looks like a fashion shot!” Beyond pleased, she sent in the photo along with her passport renewal form. When it arrived back, she opened the passport book and was stunned to see a glamorous, beautiful woman who looked maybe 50 years old staring back at her. Now she had a dilemma. Whenever she handed over her passport while going through security or customs, the agent would look at her, and then at her photo, and then back at her, wondering if she’d had a rough year. But now she had a reverse dilemma. Would she have to put on a full face of makeup and blow dry her hair for every flight? Would she have to live up to this photo? She felt boxed in to a corner. She thought she maybe should have gone with the basic mug shot—much less stressful.
We have become a nation of menopausal Munchkins; followers of the wizard–Dr. Oz. We connect to him. It’s the sound heard round the world or at least in the United States; educated, middle-aged women, waiting on line in pharmacies buying up Green Coffee Bean Extract, the touted fat-burner. I went into the CVS and asked for the latest weight loss product, Raspberry Keytone. A woman next to me interrupted with ipad in hand and careful notes on the latest Dr. Oz show. Was there something I’d missed? Which one should I buy—Raspberry Keytone or Green Coffee Bean Extract? Should I buy both?
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It’s hard to explain this cult following. We have fallen in love with the infallible, Dr. Mehmet Oz. I am convinced that if we pursue his advice on health issues, we can all live to be 130 years old. If I eat a shot glass worth of pine nuts a day, add fiber to my diet, drink pea protein power shakes, do Yoga, and take a fat-burner supplement to control my weight I will arrive in Munchkinland? If I do not, will I experience the Apocalypse? I have a cabinet full of these supplements, I ‘m just too old to remember what they’re for. Well, gotta go; I’m off the see the wizard, the wonderful wizard called OZ because because because . . . It’s time for his show and I don’t want to miss a thing!
Is Dr. Oz really a wizard? Does he have all the answers? What makes us believe him? How many of you follow and heed the advice of Dr. Oz?
Let’s say you are going on a much deserved vacation—perhaps out of the country. Let’s say you don’t have your own company so you can leave without something falling apart in your absence–others can carry on your job. You have an opportunity to really “get away from it all.”
But can you? Is it possible for you to go without checking emails and Facebook for a few weeks? How tough are you? What are the chances you’ll be missing something major? Your closest friends and family members can most likely reach you by phone in the event of an emergency. Will you lug around your laptop and/or i pad? We have become communication addicts. Addicted to minute-by-minute updates from friends. “Hey, I’m at the mall.” We think we have to “like” what they say and leave a comment. But why? Do we care that our friend is at the mall? Can we live without the endless baby and wedding photos? How about the links sent including tips from the pros like how to clean your lampshades: To clean your fabric shades, use a fine brush or a lint remover on your lampshade to remove any accumulated dirt and dust. Who cares? We are overstimulated with useless information.
When you have a chance to get away, take it and use it to restore your sanity. Give your brain a break. Read a book. Learn something new. Give people a chance to miss you. Disconnect and enjoy your vacation.