The Mind-Body Connection: Grumpy Reflects Upon Mirrors

“Mirror, mirror on the wall, who the hell is that stranger I see, cuz it ain’t me at all!”

Grumpy is thinking about covering up or removing all of the mirrors at Grumpy Villa.

Thankfully, one mirror, the one in the bedroom, is already covered in photographs. The Good Wife says it’s good Feng Shui. Nevertheless, Grumpy is a little creeped out with all of those eyes staring at him when he’s standing in his birthday suit.

But, it’s a one mirror down with several to go kind of situation. Grumpy needs to instigate a plan of action to get all of the other mirrors removed or, at the very least, covered over.

But, why do that you may ask?

Well, every time Grumpy walks past a mirror he sees some other guy staring back at him: a guy he doesn’t recognize as being remotely similar to the dude that he thinks he is. There is a stranger living in his house.

After 40 years of hard bubble gum chewing you my look like this.

After 40 years of hard bubble gum chewing you my look like this.

You see, the person Grumpy sees in the mirror resembles the old uncles he grew up with or his own father, all wrinkly and gray and quite frankly – TIMEWORN in appearance and demeanour. And, the worst part is that the old stranger in Grumpy’s house just stares silently back at him – mockingly.

And, to add insult to injury, ever since his two cataract surgeries restored his 20/20 vision, the crevices on that dude’s face are Grand Canyon deep and Apple Doll majestic.

Many people who meet Grumpy say, “No way! You don’t look like your 63!” which of course, could very well mean that he really looks 83. He surely knows that to his naked eye he doesn’t resemble anything less than a SENIOR FREAKIN CITIZEN.

The bottom line is this: what Grumpy feels on the inside isn’t reflected in what he sees on the outside. Richard Bach wrote, “Look in a mirror and one thing’s sure; what we see is not who we are.” Certainly appearance is deceiving because Grumpy feels like a 20 –something creature of dynamic diversity and spirit.  – ON THE INSIDE.

In that regard, Grumpy is more inclined to agree with the old Cowboy Proverb that states, ““The biggest trouble maker you’ll probably ever have to deal with watches you shave his face in the mirror every morning.”

If Grumpy face was on the cover of a novel on a bookstore shelf his visage would undoubtedly attract those who were interested in exploring geriatric generalities such as regularity, bloating, vision, hair loss and sleeping problems.

However, were they to venture inside and turn a few pages they’d find that the text was all about adventure, romance and daring-do; a kind of pulp fiction that extolls the virtues of freedom, frolic and fancy?

But, unfortunately there are additional hitches to explore in this regard. You see physical appearance also begets and confirms a diminished level of physical dexterity and endurance. Often what that “20-something” mind commands, the senior sinews refuse to enact.

GRUMP’S BRAIN: “Jump over that log!”

GRUMPY’S BODY: “Say what? Nope! No can do!”

RESULT: A face-plant pratfall and a brutally bruised ego.

You have read about many of Grumpy’s misadventures and missteps right here in this space.  He requires a lot of supervision these days.

(AUTHOR’S NOTE: Sharp objects and power tools are under lock and key at Grumpy Villa.)

GRUMPY: “I think I’ll cut down that little tree today, honey!”

THE GOOD WIFE: “Hold on, Grumpy, let me call a few people first!”

BRAINWhat we have here, as Cool Hand Luke would declare, “Is a failure to communicate.” This damn active, vital and dynamic brain is housed in a rusted out derelict of a body with inefficient wiring and a leaky roof. A lot of times those signals get crossed, resulting in many a mishap and for too much mayhem. Without a doubt, Grumpy has the scars to prove this.

Really, Grumpy’s syndrome is a bipolar condition of another kind and of a lesser known description. New age Gurus might call it the mind-body connection. The problem is that, in Grumpy’s case, the mind body connection is in permanent disconnect!

GRUMPY’S MIND: “Oh, geez, I better bend down and tie my shoe!”

GRUMPY’S BODY: “Naw, I don’t think that’s going to happen.”

RESULT: Grumpy slips on his shoes like an eight year old, pre-tied and with the heal support bent flat. He walks like he’s wearing flip flops.

Nonetheless, none of these meanderings have tinker’s damn to do with Grumpy’s aversion to mirrors. The stranger still lurks there – ever aging – not unlike the picture of Dorian Grey. Today the interloper had the affront to have a huge booger dangling from his nose hairs. How dare he mock Grumpy in such a child-like way?

The Buddha suggests, “A person’s inner emotional state will be revealed in his or her physical appearance. The feelings of someone in a happy and optimistic mood can be read in their face; there may even be a skip in their step. In contrast, the painful gait and drawn features of a person weighed down by suffering can communicate his or her inner torment even from a distance.”

Ah, so that’s it then. It is Grumpy’s innermost torment that is so readily distorting his reflection. All the while he thought it was his outermost torment –PUMBA THE FARTING DOG – that had his hair rapidly turning grey?

So, in the interest of public service as well as self-preservation, Grumpy embarked on a research project of mirror shattering proportions.

What can one do to have his/her outer appearance match their inner spirit and mojo such that the stranger in the mirror becomes – less strange?

Now, if you’d like a long list of 50 things to do you can read this detailed article. (JUST CLICK THE LINK)

In the interest of brevity, Grumpy has used his cherry picker to gather the gems he proposes will have the most traction when dealing with his innermost torments.

Wear Sunscreen: A large percentage of the visible signs of ageing (wrinkles, age spots) result from the cumulative effect of ultraviolet rays on the skin.

Or you can stay in the house, sit on the couch, eat a lot chips and watch sports on your big screen. Science has proven that Couch Potatoes don’t have a lot of wrinkles. Things that are round are usually smooth. Grumpy subscribes to this notion, especially in the winter.

couchGet enough sleep: The whole idea of beauty sleep is not a myth. While you sleep, cells are busy repairing DNA damage from the day before.

Also, while you are sleeping you aren’t doing all those other bad things that age you – sunning, drinking, and over dieting. You can be like a mushroom, totally in the dark, snoozing your wrinkles away.

Resolve to eat more oily fish: None of us consume enough essential fatty acids, which as well as helping our brains to function more smoothly are considered vital to keep skin-cell-membranes in good health and therefore stop the skin from getting too dry.

Grumpy prefers rubbing fish oil directly on his skin. WARNING: Where Grumpy goes, cats tend to follow. Bring back COD LIVER OIL though and Grumpy will require full restraint to consume it. Grumpy doesn’t need any oil in his liver because he keeps it well lubricated.

Drink plenty of water: It won’t hydrate your skin directly, but it will improve the way your insides work and good gut health is AAAcodsoon reflected in glowing skin.

Peeing more often also keeps you out of the sun and only steps away from the sunscreen, lotions and creams stacked there in the medicine cabinet. Hydration has never been a problem at Grumpy Villa as the house is always well stocked with cold consumable liquids.

Take up yoga: Yoga devotees usually look remarkably youthful – and if you can’t beat them, why not join in and see if it works its magic for you.

I agree – Grumpy does look a lot younger in those cool tight yoga pants. You just have to turn away if you’re offended by the lumps, bumps and protrusions. They are not Lulu’s Lemons.

Take up meditation: If you can learn to achieve the odd patch of focus and stillness in your life, it will help. Relaxing your face as you concentrate on your breathing will ease the lines of tension and worry that we all develop with the years.

Grumpy calls this “sleep” and Grumpy is all in for more sleep. That’s why they called that gal, “Sleeping Beauty”, right! And, truth be told, a sleepy Grumpy is a Happy Grumpy!

Eat more good bacteria: Taking acidophilus, a probiotic supplement, every day will enhance levels of good gut flora, which should soon result in healthier-looking skin.

I agree. Look at any toddler that eats dirt, boogers and bugs. Their skin is as pristine and wrinkle free and, well, you might say “as soft as a babies’ bottom”. That’s exactly how Grumpy wants his face to look. He’ll be sure to crack you a smile.

Have your eyebrows shaped: Having your eyebrows professionally shaped – and possibly tinted creates a defined brow and opens and lifts the eye area.

The Good Wife is always trimming Grumpy’s eyebrows to remove that rogue “long lock” that often dangles below his nose like fishing line. I think you can add nose hair and ear hair to this list. Sometimes an old guy’s face looks like a poorly trimmed Chia Pet.

Get a great haircut: Updating your hairstyle can be enough to make you look years younger. Cosmetic surgeons will often send would-be clients off for a makeover; frequently, a haircut will give them enough confidence to skip the scalpel.

Grumpy has been cutting his own hair with scissors for many years. Hence, his perfect coif when he disembarks from the Clown Car. Maybe a change from the Bozo look will work for him. Grumpy thinks Daniel Alfredsson looks younger with his hair cut shorter, don’t you. He’ll just have to get the Good Wife to unlock the scissors drawer.

Cut down on alcohol: Not only does drink have a dehydrating effect on the body, but it dilates the capillaries, which leads to a rosydrunk flush on the face (not in a good way) and has a general inflammatory effect on the body that encourages ageing.

Of course, Grumpy is researching this claim more thoroughly – one beer at a time. He thinks he needs more data to either prove or disprove this claim. He’ll get back to you shortly.

Don’t diet too strenuously: The other place where the loss will really show is in your face. You don’t want to end up looking gaunt – even the word itself is “ageing”.

A good synonym for “gaunt” is the word “haggard”. Grumpy and the haggard look go hand in hand. Sometimes he looks like a homeless person. And, luckily Grumpy still enjoys the seafood diet – whenever he sees food he eats it.

And finally, have more sex: Studies have found that couples who make love frequently look more than 10 years younger than the average adult who has sex less often. The current thinking is that the pleasure derived from sex is a crucial factor in preserving youth.

Hey, I don’t know about that old guy in the mirror but Grumpy surely is willing to try anything if it works. He’ll let you know the results of his research in this regard once he creates sufficient data to be analysed. I’d say, give him about a week!

AAAAAAAETAll of these suggestions are almost ET-ish in the sense that, by letting your “heart light shine through” you will gain a glowing outward appearance of youth and vitality.  Grumpy agrees that that is a good thing.

But, despite these ruminations, he has also come to terms with the appearance of that guy who mocks him in the mirror. After all, that dude is a distinguished looking gentleman, ruggedly handsome, who exudes a lifetime of experience in the lines of his face. He is stoic and strong in appearance. He’s the kind of guy you trust and in whom wisdom tempers his advice with clarity and meaning. He could be your Grandfather, your pastor or your member of parliament.

If you met him you’d be inclined to address him as, “Mr. Grumpy.”

And, guess what, all of this distinguished old guy stuff creates a great disguise for Grumpy. You see, his “20-something” mind can hide behind this grandfatherly camouflage and run amuck, explore the fun side of living and generally create havoc without responsibility. Sometimes it feels like High School all over again. We all need more Déjà vu in our lives!


And, Grandbabies surely do help you with all of this. Keeping me young at heart!

Yee Haw to that!

Isn’t that the key my friends? Isn’t the answer blowing in the wind?

Remember, you will always grow older but no one is telling you that have to grow up! And, I’m thinking, isn’t it time to show that person you see in the mirror a “good time” or two. Then and there, I truly believe, that both of you will look and feel a whole lot younger.

Today the old guy in the mirror confirmed that very thing.


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