I Feel Bad About My Neck and Other Thoughts on Being a Woman by Nora Ephron is a great audio book. Nora Ephron has a great delivery and she is very familiar with the subject matter. Growing old and dying seems to be on Nora’s mind a lot as she was writing these essays. They are both funny and poignant. And I liked all that stuff about the New York Apartment that cost ten thousand dollars a month in rent.
Being a man, and not yet that old a man, I am not worried about my neck. In fact, I could care less about my neck. But as a portrait photographer, I hear everyday many of the complaints that Nora Ephron has about her neck. Once you get old, the neck tells the world that you are old. So Nora has a nice collection of black turtleneck sweaters that hide the offensive neck from public view. I feel sure that it is only women, and very likely only the women themselves, that feel bad about their necks. Most men’s eyes are not drawn to a woman’s neck, young and beautiful or old and sagging to the floor, it doesn’t matter that much. Only, it does to Nora Ephron and other older women.
Nora Ephron wrote When Harry Met Sally and Silkwood and has a number of books under her belt. After laughing out loud at I Feel Bad About My Neck more than once, I will be looking for more of her books. This collection of essays is pretty short for an audio book, only three discs. These little tales are sprinkled with advice, from her mother, from her lawyer, from seemingly random people in her life-most of the advice she later learns is not all that sound. But you never know-do you?
She talks about life and death and renting vs buying. We’re all going to die. We all know this, but none of really believe it. Somehow, they are going to find a cure for death before our number comes up. Only, well, they won’t. The last chapter in I Feel Bad About My Neck talks about the losses we all go through as we get older. Nora Ephron talks about the loss of friends, music, and the world at large as it is handed off like a relay baton to the next generation. But Boomer want to hang on to that baton as long as they can. In fact, you’ll have to pry it from our cold, dead fingers.
At least, that’s the feeling I got from Nora Ephron.