Just when you think that you're fine about aging comes news that a cultural icon has been lying about his age for years!
Elmo's birthday was last Friday and he turned 3 ½ again. Now comes the ugly truth: Elmo first appeared on "Sesame Street" or was "born" in 1979.
That makes him 33 actual years old.
Yes, it also means that he lies about his age!
As someone who writes about Hollywood, I shouldn't really be all that shocked. On a daily basis I'm immersed in a business where most women, and now many of the guys, lie about the number on their driver's license. Some just state that they will be "39 1/2 or 49 ½" for basically forever.
Do you lie about your age?
WHO LIES ABOUT AGE
I'll never forget the deal with an A-list actress that you know…and who I don't want to get mad at me, so I'm not going to say her name. Anyway, a few years ago a major national magazine did a profile of her stating her "newly configured" age, which was about seven years shy of her real age.
How do we know? A bunch of her high school graduating class classmates wrote to the magazine saying it was funny that they were in caps and gowns with her but had no idea that she was seven years younger than them at the time.
Pretty funny stuff.
Of course, you can look up any actor or actress on IMBD.com. Are these ages always true? Who knows? The artists often provide the information or correct it. Or they deny it during interviews.
I think it's refreshing when stars are like Michael Caine and proudly announce before you can even ask him, "I'm 78 years old and feeling great, knock on wood."
IS IT WISE TO LIE ABOUT AGE?
I know it's tough in Hollywood, a business that sadly caters to the very young. I love the line from "The First Wives Club" where Goldie Hawn insists there are three ages for women in Hollywood: "Babe, district attorney and 'Driving Miss Daisy.'"
There's an infamous "Sex and the City" episode where Charlotte insists she's going to be celebrating her 39th birthday again…and again. She calls her "faux birthday" ..which actually seems kind of sad.
Of course, many actresses don't mention their age or prefer to be fortysomething. Others delight in giving numbers because they look at least a decade younger thanks to great skin care, going to the gym or even a few nips, tucks, shots and a little filler.
Wait, I'm getting exhausted just thinking of it all. But the truth is there are enough anti-aging techniques out there that no one can really guess ages anymore. One woman's 60 is another woman's 40.
I talked to Dolly Parton over the holidays and she was thrilled to discuss how she's now 66. You could never guess in person if she was in her 50s or 60s.
"I earned all these years. I worked hard for them and I won't let anyone take any of them away," she told me.
For the last few days, I've done an informal poll amongst friends and colleagues over 40 asking if they lie about their age. The results were a bit surprising.
Almost no one I know does lie. "Why lie about it? Why not celebrate it?" said one friend.
"I'm lucky to be here, fine lines and all," said another.
"I've earned these lines and wrinkles," responded someone else.
Personally, I never lie about it because I lost my mom to cancer. She was only 53. With every year, I think that I'm indeed fortunate to be here.
Now let me ask you: Do you lie about your age?