Monday, January 19, 2009

The Thing About Life is That One Day You'll Be Dead

I just finished reading the book The Thing About Life Is That One Day You’ll Be Dead by David Shields. Sounds uplifting doesn’t it? The book starts out with babies and discussing their development and continues on through adolescence and so on through old age.

Initially, I found the book interesting, that is until I got to the part of the book that talks about how it is all downhill once you reach the age of thirty, at that point I started to freak out a little bit. So, essentially, I’m at the top of my game right now physically that is. Apparently, my IQ started descending five years ago. I’m really not happy that things are going downhill considering that I’m not happy with where they are.

I have never really thought too long and hard about what aging entails, but this book forced me to…unfortunately. Never before have I examined my head looking for my first gray hair, but now that I know that it is nothing short of miraculous that I’ve made it this long without any grays I can’t stop looking. Now I understand what my cousin, who’s only twenty-nine, meant when she said she is paranoid about getting wrinkles and applies massive amounts of anti-aging cream every night.

I’m sure this paranoia is only a phase and within a week I’ll have forgotten that my body is slowly falling apart, but I haven’t forgotten yet and hopefully the small changes I’ve made will stick with me. For example, when I went to the grocery store yesterday I bought (you aren’t going to believe this) Wheat Bread! I know it’s unheard of. I always swore up and down that white bread would be the last thing that I would give up. But, not only did I buy wheat bread, but I made healthy muffins last night. They are apple pecan and I was a bit suspicious considering the lack of sugar and butter and the use of whole wheat flour, but they are damn good!

Maybe this whole eating healthy thing isn’t so bad. I’m gonna give it a little test drive this week. I also did a new ab workout on Saturday and all day Sunday I was walking around like an old lady – it was pathetic. Now my motivation for working out isn’t to rock a bikini in the summer, instead it is in an attempt to age gracefully and not walk around like an old lady and have strange people derisively call me Grandma (and by strange people I mean Chuckles).

Here’s the recipe for the muffins if anyone else is as afraid as I am of their body decaying:

Apple Pecan Muffins


· Cooking spray (or cupcake liners, which I used)
· ¾ cup plus 2 T packed brown sugar
· ¼ cup chopped pecans
· ½ t ground cinnamon
· 1 cup all-purpose flour
· 1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
· 1 t baking soda
· ½ t salt
· ¼ cup canola oil
· 2 large eggs
· 1 cup natural applesauce
· 1 t vanilla extract
· ¾ cup lowfat buttermilk
· 1 Golden Delicious apple, peeled, cored and cut into ¼-inch pieces (which I labeled on my grocery list as GD apple causing me later to wonder why I referred to the apple as “God damn”. I’m smart.)


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Coat a 12-capacity muffin pan with cooking spray. In a small bowl, mix together 2 tablespoons of the brown sugar, the pecans, and cinnamon. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the all-purpose and whole-wheat flour, baking soda and salt. In a large bowl, whisk the remaining ¾ cup sugar and oil until combined. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, whisking well after each addition. Whisk in the applesauce and vanilla. Whisk in the flour mixture in 2 batches, alternating with the buttermilk. Whisk just until combined. Gently stir in the apple chunks. Pour the batter into the prepared muffin pan and sprinkle with the pecan mixture. Tap the pan on the counter a few times to remove any air bubbles. Bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center of 1 of the muffins comes out clean. Let cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Run a knife around the muffins to loosen them and unmold. Cool completely on the rack. I found that this made more than 12 muffins – I filled the tin too much, but it probably should have made 18 muffins.


Anonymous said...

once you go wheat you'll never go back... white bread tastes like paste to me now. especially if you buy honey wheat... it's HEAVEN with pb&j!
the aging thing is definitely scary and i've been afraid of wrinkles since about 19 so i'm hoping i've done enough for all these years to continue to stave them off... good luck!

S. said...

Oh wow, that means my IQ is at it's top game right now....oh brother....

Andy said...

Oh don't be rdiculous! You're still young!! Things go downhill when you get to 40, certainly not 30.

Kez said...

The thing that scares me is that I heard you start to shrink from your 30s onwards. As someone who is five foot nothing, I am a little scared!!!

Anonymous said...

ugh, welcome to my world. taking care of old people in a hospital is frightening. especially when you're like 'hey, you might live ten more years if you didn't eat this but did this instead...." and they're all "I'm old! I'll eat whatever I want."

those muffins sound amazing. yumm.

Dingo said...

Every now and then I'll have a freak out about aging. But not enough to eat wheat bread.

Rachie said...

I do NOT want to read that book. Sounds depressing. Thanks for the heads up!

Jay said...

I've yet to embrace the idea of my own senescence, current grey hairs notwithstanding.

Bayjb said...

I love that in one post you cover aging and muffins. What a combo. I worry about aging but just try to enjoy the ride and let it all come as it may

Elizabeth said...

Those sound delicious! Sometimes I worry about aging, but then I find something else to worry about, like where I put my keys, which leads me to worrying about memory loss, which leads me to worrying about aging.

Kristen said...


Things are only going to get worse for me from here?

I'm almost 35!!!!

Maybe I should just die now and get it over with.

The muffins sound wonderful!