I’m a bit disappointed, not to mention sore in the cheek, that none of you succeeded in earning extra credit with early return of the homework assignment despite a few sorry attempts. I hope for better in the assignments the rest of you should leave n my desk as you depart today.
Within about thirty years of man’s appearance on earth a new problem developed. Nobody talked much about it until after the Stone Age when language was developed to allow casual conversation. The problem was youth, or the loss of it. Adults who had been there since the beginning were finding it hard to get up in the morning without a pain or two. They were forgetting things, like whether they had hunted to the south or north the previous day.
Without language it just remained a dirty little secret. Men were vexed because the women they lived with were not the cute little hairy things they had once been. Women were vexed because the men were trying to remedy that.
Once it was out in the open an active pursuit of youth began. An early result was that there was rumored to be one particular spring where it seemed there were always a lot of young people. Perhaps it was something in the water. A likely pond that fulfilled the gossip was found but shortly thereafter a nose count revealed more old people than young so the youth went elsewhere. The old followed. The young moved on again. So it went up until at least the days of Ponce de Leon. There may still be whack-o’s on that fools errand.
When water seemed not to be the solution, other things were tried. Booze helped some. While its effect didn’t last all that long it seemed to work in the hours closely following midnight. In the end it had little effect but to increase the number of one armed men.
Poultices were conjured. Sometimes they seemed to work though little more than suspicious testimony was available to support one over another. Many worked best at night before interior lighting was discovered. Unhappily other attempts were wasted when men walked into the cave while the poultice was still in place. The sounds of gasps and running feet are not romantic music.
The cosmetic industry stepped into the breach, nudging aside the circus clown union. Women began putting things on me are already questioning that.in e in the chin, most gave up hope that is would work. Only the surgeons benefitted tiontheir faces and lips that a knowing alchemist wouldn’t touch. The alchemists were right. Nothing of real value resulted. The answer though always seemed just out of grasp. The next effort might produce it and the financial returns would be worth the effort once success was found.
Plastic surgery came into existence and again produced only temporary results. Shortly before the navel replaced became dimple in the chin, most gave up hope that this would work. Only the surgeons benefited from the attempt over time.
Over in the men’s department is has only turned in those directions during recent times. There was no reason for them to do so until television ads and sports statistics came along. Men had procured better testimonial writers and PR specialists. They had convinced the world that men only became more distinguished looking as they grew older. They also discouraged careful examination of what the word ‘distinguished’ means.
Recently things have been discovered, but never used, that would bring men back the strength of youth that allowed them to accomplish miraculous sport feats. Those are also a boon to the haberdashery business as head size has increased.
The internet and Photoshop now vie as the penultimate solutions for both men and women. There has been limited, though short lasting, success after success with those. There maybe promise there but some are already questioning that.
What causes all of these solutions to fall short and eludes almost all who seek new ones is a simple fact. They are looking in the wrong places. Youth exists only where there is hope. When do you feel younger than when in new love, no matter your age? When do you feel older than when all hope vanishes, when all promises have been reneged? Hope is the fountain of youth and those who possess it remain ever young.
Those who can maintain love as always new will guarantee themselves eternal youth.
To prepare for next week’s continuation on this subject your homework is to read the first ten chapters of the Kama Sutra.