On Wednesday my dentist put a new crown on my lower jaw. On Thursday the same dentist put two new crowns on my friend’s upper jaw. I also have a friend who’s spent the past few months getting a dental implant.

This coming Monday a friend will have arthroscopic surgery on her shoulder. The following week a different friend will undergo a shoulder replacement. Mr. Wonderful is about to restart physical therapy for his achy shoulder.

Last month five friends underwent cataract surgery. One of them was also treated for glaucoma. People I know trade war stories about macular degeneration the way we used to swap tips on how to get your child to do his homework.

One friend just had a bunionectomy. Someone else went to the hospital for day-surgery on her trigger finger. Another friend avoids corn, nuts, popcorn and kiwi to keep her diverticulitis in check. 

    Don’t let aging get you down — it’s too hard to get back up.  Anonymous

I brush my hair and notice that my hair is thinning dramatically. I’ve even got a creeping bald spot where my part used to be. Actually, it’s not that easy to brush my hair these days because my gnarly arthritic fingers thwart a firm grip on the brush. 

Almost every man I know is wearing hearing aids. (Or should be.) Some confess that their gastrointestinal tracts are not what they used to be. I’ve heard more about GERD than I care to. And people are popping Nexium and Prilosec like Junior Mints.

Conversations with friends can resemble the television show Jeopardy.  “I have to recommend this great book,” a friend said to me.  “You will LOVE it! It’s written by, uh, um, you know the guy who wrote, oh what’s his name, you know him, he wrote the story about the paraplegic who fell in love with his nurse. Or was it his yoga teacher? Oh, what is his name?”

This condition is called “mild cognitive impairment.” Mild schmild. Between you and me, I don’t know ANYONE my age who’s not secretly sweating, if not agitatedly anxious, that they’ve got early advancing Alzheimers. You’ll spot them eating blueberries by the quart, drinking gallons of ginseng tea and sprinkling stalks of rosemary on everything from scrambled eggs to pork chops.

Every supermarket I go to has aisles DEVOTED to incontinence products.  Half the folk I know have their very own blood pressure monitor. Each RiteAid, CVS and WalGreen in the county features racks and racks of cheater glasses in styles ranging from basic black to designer leopard.

Most of my friends can’t sleep through the night.  If I decide to host a pajama party at 2 AM, I’m guaranteed a full house.

There’s also a lot of really creepy yucky stuff that’s happening to my generation. Food gets stuck in our teeth! Liver spots pop up on our wrinkled hands! Rogue grey chin hairs suddenly sprout! Oh, the indignity of it all!

I have to agree with my friend Anonymous: Time may be a great healer but it’s a lousy beautician.