Bridget Jones said a woman starts to feel her age when the fashion of the times comes full circle and she witnesses the ghostly resurrection of all the stuff she wore in her youth.

I'd like to take that a step further and add that a woman feels her age when she absolutely pines for a time machine just so she can travel back and tell her young self to hold onto that collection of high-waist skirts; they will definitely be back in 15 years. While I'm at it, I might as well advise my younger self to scrap the diet, quit the gym and tuck into that L-saizu (L?サイズ, large size) box of Maccha Pocky (抹茶ポッキー, green-tea flavored Pocky), because one day thick legs will be quite the thing.

No, really. Here's how I know. Last week I was walking along with an old friend when he remarked, "Saikin onnanokono ashiwa dondon futokunaru" (「 最近、女の子の足はどんどん太くなる」, "Recently, girls' legs seem to be getting fatter and fatter"). He's right. Ten years ago the media reported with awe about how Japanese women's legs had become so slim at the time of a boom in dieting. So what if women were wasting away from malnutrition? Their gekihoso (激細, passionately skinny) legs had men swooning. Now, however, it looks like we're reverting to traditional standards of beauty, such as shirauo no yōna hada (白魚のような肌, icefish-like translucent white skin), hosoi unaji (細いうなじ, a slender nape of the neck) and yanagi-goshi (柳腰, willowy hips). Leg concerns, it seems, have been trampled on.