Used to be I skipped right past ads for dentures. Same with Doan’s back pills and the Clapper. Nothing, not anything, appealed to me about these commercials or the old people who appeared in them. I simply didn’t relate to brittle bones and constant pain upon waking. I could still do back bends and pee directly into a toilet, so obviously – obviously! – I wasn’t in the target demographic for these products.
And things proceeded this way for years – me passing happily by any commercial aimed at people over 40 and them silently laughing at my hubris, the way I do at teenagers sunbathing or wearing slutty prom dresses (ONE DAY YOUR SKIN WILL LOOK LIKE A DISEASED LIVER AND YOUR LEGS WILL MELT INTO YOUR FOOT ARCH). (ENJOY THIS FLEETING TIME BUT YOU WON’T BECAUSE THAT’S THE UNIVERSE’S JOKE ON HUMANKIND EVERYWHERE.)
But finally, as all those old people product manufacturers surely knew, I got it, because along came the Chillow. The scenes of a perimenopausal woman profusely sweating the last vestiges of youth out every pore pleased me. I watched and smiled in communion. Why, I got hot at night too! Sometimes my entire body outline was sweat etched on the sheets. And God bless the Chillow! It’s a cold pillow. For when you’re hot. Which for me, is as regular as my period used to be.
I once was cold. You couldn’t warm me up no matter how hard you tried. There weren’t enough sheep in the world to make sweaters for my body. I’d dread going to work because some middle-aged woman always insisted on cranking up the air conditioner. Even under layers and layers of clothing, I shivered. I’m sure that most days, I was three degrees away from a human cryogenics experiment.
Sure I didn’t always dress as warmly as I should, like the one time I wore sockless flats and a coat the thickness of Paris Hilton’s brain in the middle of Milwaukee’s subartic winter. But most of the time, I traveled with portable heaters and an extra bear pelt, just in case. I remember those days fondly.
Because now, there’s no cooling me down. I insist on the air conditioner set as low as it can go. I always need a fan blowing in my bedroom. I forgo underwear under skirts because that breeze feels so refreshing. I even sleep naked, which for an OCD clean person who detests the idea of nude body debris soaking into bed linens, is a clear indicator I’ve fallen into middle age and can’t get up.
The idea of a cold pillow to lie upon really excited me. I even imagined scenarios where I’d buy 10 and lash them to every part of my body. Maybe I could even fit one in my purse. Or under my bra. The sky really is the limit when you’re in the middle of a hot flash and lost youth rage.
It’s hard to think that in 10 years, I’ll be daydreaming about analgesics and Denny’s “Moons Over My Hammy” plate the way I’m now fantasizing about the Chillow.
So you got me, mid-40s, you got me. I was a cocky youngster who eschewed any product aimed at the over-30 age group; and now I hate all teenagers and their pre-diseased-liver skin.
Cool! Cool! Hear that? It’s the Chillow train, b@tches.