I had a extraordinary epiphany recently. It caused me to shake my head in wonder at its stunning simplicity. And, more than anything, at why it had taken me more than 30 years to have this notion. The thought being: I was, day in and day out, creating my own wrinkles as surely as if my face was made of clay and my hands those of a sculptor. Allow me to explain.
I am constantly propping up my head with my hands, cupping my fingers around my chin, leaning a cheek pensively against my palm. And when I say constantly, I mean like every two minutes. I could be waiting for a website page to load, or scrolling through my email, writing a note, reading a book - anything that doesn't require two hands - and my unoccupied left hand will find its way to my face. The result of these postures is that I am unknowingly pushing my skin into folds, creases and wrinkles.
I got my first wrinkle when I was around 27. I don't mean a faint whisper of a fine line to come. I mean a crevice. It was - and still is - above my left eye. I have always regarded it as a bit of a curiosity, wondering vaguely how it had come to be formed. Is my left eyebrow perpetually shooting up in some kind of quizzical expression? I am pretty sure I never do that. No, the culprit is my left fist. You can see exactly what I mean by the picture above, which was captured by our photographer Amy E Fletcher while I was hanging around waiting for a shoot to get set up. Its a pretty typical position for me, has been for most of my life starting with slumping across school desks and over the years it has resulted in a pleated forehead.
Now that I am aware of this, I am, of course, trying to stop myself. Short of sitting on my hands this is easier said than done.