ImageI wish to make an announcement.

I have two chins.

Yep, that's right. I looked in the mirror this morning, and there it was. My once firm chin betrayed me, snuck out behind my back, and picked up a mate. In the years ahead, I imagine this new chin of mine will drop, and transform itself into a gizzard-like appendage that will flap in the wind. I've seen tools, cosmetic helpers, if you will, designed to firm and tone the facial skin, and counteract the effects of aging, but I'm certain they don't work. Nature is, after-all, a force to be reckoned with. What then, will I do with this new piece of me?


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Jackson Pines and Cranston Dean in residency at Langosta Lounge in Asbury Park
Jackson Pines and Cranston Dean at Langosta


My new chin is part of the aging process and, within reason, I ain't gonna fight it. Everybody goes through it. My Mom certainly did. I remember Mom's double chin, though I can't say at what point it appeared. Mom bought a lot of Clairol hair color, and jars of Ponds skin cream, but if she had additional "cosmetic helpers," I didn't notice. In fact, I didn't notice my Mom aging at all.

Mom was….Mom. She did her daily "Mom things:" she cooked (the best mashed potatoes), cleaned (lots of Pledge), went to work, took my sister and me to the library, and the movies. Mom cared for us when we were sick, shared our sorrow when we were sad, rejoiced with us when we were happy. Her reddish hair (Clairol's version), was always tightly curled thanks to her trusty bobby-pins, and she smelled of Yardley English Lavender or Windsong perfume. Mom wore flannel nightgowns at night, simple clothes and sensible shoes during the day. I know Mom aged – photographs attest to the inevitable – but I will always remember her as young, vibrant, loving, and treasured.

So what if I have another chin? Nothing short of a face-lift will cure it (and that's never going to happen!). Everybody ages. That's a fact. I will simply follow Mom's example, rely on my "cosmetic tools" (my Loreal hair color, my Oil of Olay, my curling iron), and hope for the best.

Maybe someday, if the good Lord allows it, and I truly follow my Mom's example, my kids will remember me, the same way I remember her – ageless.

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Allan Dean

Allan Dean is editor, publisher, and founder of the Atlantic Highlands Herald. Published since 1999 and selected in 2000 by the Borough of Atlantic Highlands as one of their official newspapers, making...