Some people never seem to age.
And I don’t mean women who have ‘aged gracefully’ or men who are even more handsome in their 50s than they were in their 20s. I also don’t mean women who have had an alarmingly high number of plastic surgery procedures.
I mean people who do not look a heck of a lot different in their 40s or 50s than you remember them looking in their college days. I’m talking The Picture of Dorian Gray unsettlingly young-looking middle-aged people.
The paradigm figure for this disturbing phenomenon was, of course, “America’s Oldest Teenager”… Dick Clark. Until his stroke in December, 2004, Dick Clark was the poster child for that Fountain of Youth for which people have been searching since the days of Ponce de León.
A dear friend of mine falls into this category. She has not aged since college. Sure, a perfectionist might find a grey hair here (I had my first grey hair at 19!) and a slight wrinkle at the corner of her eyes (my crows feet are deep enough to hold water!)… but by and large, her girlish good looks and youthful charm are enough to make the rest of us loathe her. I swear, this woman has an increasingly disgusting painting of herself tucked away somewhere.
And the worst part of it is… she is JUST AS NICE as she was when she was 20 years old! It’s enough to make you sick. I mean really. Her eternal youthfulness seems to defy the laws of nature and the Almighty. It shakes ones faith in Justice, not to mention The Natural Order of Things. 
My own mother was like this. I remember as a young rōnin marveling over photos of her as a 19-year-old, looking basically the same as she did in her forties. Unnerving.
I am not sure I will ever find the secret location of my dear friend’s painting. No doubt she has it locked away deep in some underground vault, far from prying eyes. I keep inviting her for Sunday brunch, hoping to lure her into unwittingly dropping a hint or clue that might lead me to its secret location.
If, after a lifetime of chasing down stale leads and coming up upon yet another dead-end, I ever do find that painting… my heart races at the mere thought… I can see me standing in front of it, my gnarled arthritic old fingers tearing away at the twine and burlap, hesitating only a moment before throwing the covering aside. Looking at the canvas, my rheumy eyes grow wide with horror and revulsion, my hand clutching my chest, a silent scream on my wrinkled lips as I look at the image of my dear friend… young and pretty as the day I met her, positively glowing with inner charm, a vision of loveliness, as always.
Oh, the horror! The horror!
 Natural Order of Things – (Example re Perfection): Another dear friend of mine, Chelsea. Mid-20s, tall, slender, witty, intelligent, funny, athletic, sweet as jam and gorgeous to the point of being destabilizingly hot. Chelsea has no visible flaws. Now, The Natural Order of Things dictates that no single person can be without flaws. The Divine Plan protects ordinary humans from perfection. We can’t handle it, frankly. So, in its wisdom Nature finds a way. Despite her physical beauty, intellectual superiority, athletic prowess and winning personality… my darling gorgeous friend Chelsea, heaven bless her, is a sweaty klutz. She perspires like she’s getting paid for it and if there is anything breakable within arms-reach, trust me, Chelsea will knock it over, trip over it or in some way render it unfit for use and in so doing restore Balance to the Universe.