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343 of 376 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enough with denial - embrace it ;-)
I've loved Nora Ephron ever since Sleepless In Seattle and You've Got Mail. Heartburn (which she wrote) turned into a hit film, and so I knew when I saw that she wrote another book again, I thought I'd pick it up. It's a collection of amusing essays all about growing older.
She says that there are so many books out there about what to do after menopause etc, but...
Published on August 2, 2006 by Little Miss Cutey

versus
119 of 128 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Witty, clever but leightweight...
Nora Ephron is witty, clever and has her finger on the pulse of American women everywhere in her delightful book, I Feel Bad About My Neck: and Other Thoughts on Being a Woman. My only complaint is that at 137 pages (and small pages at that), it's a rather lightweight book.

Ephron writes about so many of the problems we women face: hairstyles, maintenance...
Published on December 15, 2006 by Cynthia K. Robertson


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343 of 376 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enough with denial - embrace it ;-), August 2, 2006
By 
Little Miss Cutey (Melbourne, Australia) - See all my reviews
I've loved Nora Ephron ever since Sleepless In Seattle and You've Got Mail. Heartburn (which she wrote) turned into a hit film, and so I knew when I saw that she wrote another book again, I thought I'd pick it up. It's a collection of amusing essays all about growing older.
She says that there are so many books out there about what to do after menopause etc, but none addressed your neck change as you age so she thought this was a cute and funny title.
She talks about maintenance being a second career because a lot of women are pre-empting age. For example, hair dying, botox etc. She talks about her husbands theory of women either being birds, muffins or horses and that is the shape of your face. If you are a muffin, you can have a zillion face lifts and be fine, but other shaped faces - not so much.
She talks more seriously about reaching 60 and start loosing friends. You have to come to grips with reality and realise that we aren't invincible and won't die - it's getting closer to being on the cards.
She also mentions things she wishes she'd known; You can't be friends with people who call after 11pm, Write everything down, Back up your files etc. She's very funny (a very dry sense of humour) and it shows through this book. It's a good read that is sometimes serious but overall will be thoroughly enjoyable and entertaining. If you are a fan of her movies, you will definately love I Feel Bad About My Neck ...
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119 of 128 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Witty, clever but leightweight..., December 15, 2006
Nora Ephron is witty, clever and has her finger on the pulse of American women everywhere in her delightful book, I Feel Bad About My Neck: and Other Thoughts on Being a Woman. My only complaint is that at 137 pages (and small pages at that), it's a rather lightweight book.

Ephron writes about so many of the problems we women face: hairstyles, maintenance routines, raising children, empty nesting, reading glasses, cooking, purses, living in New York City, aging, and the death of good friends. Some of her observations are brutally honest. She talks about how a neck is a telltale sign of aging. "The neck is a dead giveaway. Our faces are lies and our necks are the truth. You have to cut open a redwood tree to see how old it is, but you wouldn't have to do that if it had a neck." She has a refreshing list of "What I Wish I'd Known" including "Never marry a man you wouldn't want to be divorced from" and "The empty nest is underrated."

I' m not real big on make-up routines, I wear glasses all the time and love my poker-straight hair. So some of her musings I found funny but didn't necessarily relate. But where Ephron and I see eye to eye is about reading. "Reading is everything. Reading makes me feel I've accomplished something, learned something, become a better person." One of my favorite chapters is "On Rapture," about the state of rapture she feels when she discovers a good book. She also lists some books that changed her life. The chapters where she discusses reading are the best in the book.

I Feel Bad About My Neck got raves from most of the book critics that reviewed this book. While I enjoyed it, I just was expecting more from Ephron.
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34 of 35 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars WE ARE NOT GETTING OLDER; WE ARE GETTING BETTER...AND MORE TOLERANT OF OURSELVES, August 5, 2006
By 
Sandra D. Peters "Seagull Books" (Prince Edward Island, Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I liked this book from start to finish. It is a fairly quick read but filled with an unusual tongue-in-cheek style of wit and humour. After all, we cannot change the aging process, so why not come to terms and make the best of it. I, too, am approaching that big 60 year and as I was reading this book, kept saying to myself, "Yep, that's me!" The book will win the hearts of female readers, especially those who are going through or already beyond the menopausal years. You are bound to find a part of yourself in here somewhere. Growing older may bring a few wrinkles and a lot of things that once worked now leak, creak and squeak, but life is only what you make it. The author has a way of making you feel that growing old is not all that bad after all. You can't recapture youth, but you can get more than a few laughs from this book - go for it!
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49 of 55 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The truth about aging told with honesty and a liberal dose of humor, October 3, 2006
Never mind the grammatically horrendous title, this is one entertaining book of essays on the subject of aging, most especially as it applies to women. Whether it would be as funny to either: a). men, or b). people too young to know what aging really feels like, is debatable, but I can only say I found it a very deep, thoughtful and quick read.

It's also one that kept me laughing, that is, when I didn't feel like crying. Ephron doesn't sugar-coat, though she does pour on the humor. She lets out her true feelings on the topic of aging, which feels an awful lot like grief in some of her essays. That would make sense, though, to mourn the passing of youth as you'd mourn just about anything you've had and lost.

Though she couches things in humor, she's brutally honest. She's at her most poignant while speaking about the loss of her best friend, who died all too soon after discovering she had cancer. One day they were talking about the fickle and finite nature of life, and the next they were struggling to find a way to make sense of things, and to figure out how to say goodbye. Really wrenching stuff, but the uplift is Ephron's unfailing sense of humor. The optimism of that may be real or faked, but there's enough padding there that the reader can still come away with a feeling things aren't SO bad, about her neck or other, bigger things like death and dying.

This is partly a book about fighting the aging process, but not entirely. All the creams and surgical procedures are mentioned, and Ephron will tell you what she's done and what she hasn't, but that isn't the main point of the book. The point is aging isn't a walk in the park. Not only can an aging person all but feel the world passing on to the next generation, but she must also face that along with losing some of the people she cares about. Aging means time passes, and as time passes both good and bad things happen. You may choose to focus on the good or the bad, but ultimately aging is a struggle, pure and simple. It's a struggle physically, mentally and emotionally, and that's all there is to it.
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Imaginative Writer Actively Combats Aging at 65 . . . with Self-Deprecating Humor, May 25, 2007
By 
Donald Mitchell "Jesus Loves You!" (Thanks for Providing My Reviews over 124,000 Helpful Votes Globally) - See all my reviews
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I think Nora Ephron could write about the telephone book and make it entertaining (one brief section in this book about parenting proves the point). Here's an example. Most writers don't want to think about aging. If they do, they want to prescribe "solutions." Nora Ephron has a different idea: Simply describe aging as something we foolishly try to stave off (pretty unsuccessfully) by sharing her own experiences.

That concept is best captured by her essay "On Maintenance" that describes in detail the time, money, and effort she puts into trying to look as good as she can. I'm reminded of a conversation I had with my cousin (who in her more naive days was a beauty queen) who always looks terrific. When I complimented my cousin on her appearance once, she replied, "You have no idea how much more effort it takes every year." Now, I do!

The essay "I Feel Bad About My Neck" is very funny. I don't think I ever look at women's necks . . . but now I know that some women do. Apparently it's all downhill after 43. The essay ends with the irony that Ms. Ephron cannot do anything about her neck without a facelift, and she's not a good candidate for a facelift.

I also liked her essays about how we fall in love with concepts, places, and people . . . for no particularly good reason. But that temporary embrace is soon replaced by another one that will probably be even more satisfying. Although not described that way, you get a sense that she views her prior two marriages much in the same way. This concept is beautifully explored in "Serial Monogamy: A Memoir" (about her affection for various cookbook authors), "Moving On" (about her 10 year delight in a large apartment in New York), "The Lost Strudel" (her desire to recreate happy experiences through food that's no longer easy to find), and "Me and Bill: The End of Love" (about her feelings about Bill Clinton as a leader).

Some of her essays border on being rants. I found those the least appealing. These include "I Hate My Purse" and "Blind as a Bat."

Vignettes are powerfully shared. I loved her humorous take on probably being the only White House intern JFK didn't make a pass at and her expert explanation about why typing was irrelevant as an intern in the JFK White House in "Me and JFK: Now It Can Be Told." She also does vignettes brilliantly in "The Story of My Life in 3,500 Words or Less."

She ends with thoughts about dying, and humor fails her. But "Considering the Alternative" is the section where you see the real woman most clearly.

Writers will love her mother's advice: "Everything is copy." The older I get, the more I realize that's true.

Those who like to fall asleep with a smile will find it makes sense to read one essay a night before turning off the light.
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111 of 132 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious and true, what a combination!, August 21, 2006
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Nora Ephron verbalized my thoughts about purses and especially necks. What happens overnight? Suddenly you look in the mirror and realize, "Omigod, it's my grandmother's neck!Who drew those lines?" Thank God for winter, I used to hate it but how else can you wear turtlenecks everyday? I am considering volunteering for Antarctica for the summer so I can live in polarfleece.This is so humour filled but also validating. We are all in this together and I swear, I will be buried in a turtleneck
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars The title must have made it a Nationwide Best Seller, January 10, 2007
By 
As said, it must have been the title, and the first couple of chapters that made it a best seller. I kept having to urge myself on to keep reading, because, somehow, I simply couldn't relate to much of what she wrote. My expectation was that as a woman, I'll relate to anything she said. But this book talks about living in NY experiences (which I appreciate very much as I love NY), but can't relate to it. Also, it's a priveledged life, again, someting I can't relate to. The last few chapters I forced myself to read, the last two I simply skipped as I was too bored.

42-year old in MD
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52 of 60 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars What Happened Nora?, August 10, 2006
By 
Nancy L. Dalton (Belton Missouri, USA) - See all my reviews
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I am sorry I wasted my money on this book. I looked forward to reading this book and bought it the first day it was available. I am fifty and thought I could use a light read and a little laughter. What I ended up with were the boring ramblings of Nora's life. I felt like she threw together a few days of journaling and published it. I didn't laugh out loud once. Let's be real we have all heard funny stories about hair in wrong places and mid life short term memory. I kept waiting for something funny and it just went on and on and on.......
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56 of 65 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Now I feel bad too., August 29, 2007
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I wish I had read some of the reviews before wasting valuable summer reading time and money on this. It seemed like endless pages (amazingly only 139) of complaining about things that are well within someone of her means control. If it is such a burden to keep your hair dyed, stop dying it and learn to love it gray. Hey, you know what, if you're over 60 we all know that its not your real hair color anyway. No one cares if you hate the time it takes to get a manicure, most of us don't care or will never see your manicure, please don't bore us any further with your petty whining. This book depressed me. Thankfully the next book on my reading list was Jen Lancaster-now she was funny, same topics, appartment hunting in the big city, hair dying, but way, way funnier.
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30 of 33 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Too much brevity, August 15, 2006
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I admire Ephron but could not help wondering, in the few minutes it took to read, why this was published as a book when it seemed more a witty article. Women over sixty are already clued in to her insights,i hope. Its appallingly short.
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