The medical profession refers to me as a geriatric mother, I’m socially accepted as being middle aged and chronologically approaching the big 40. So it was with a certain amount of bemusement, I overheard a Victoria Beckham size sliver of conversation while at a delightful dinner with several of our friends recently.
‘… She’s so young, she’s 30..’
I momentarily revelled in her words (I’m 38 1/6th thank you Oil of Olay!) and then Boom! registered the cynicism, so obviously not intended as the compliment I had lapped it up as. But see there’s a fundamental problem with overhearing a conversation, they’re tricky to contextualise without knowing the before and after. So I roller dex’d through our table chat and pondered over what we’d all been sharing; laughing raucously, drinking like we were dehydrated, I’d just discussed the details about my Brazilian blow dry. Our friend has misheard me and expressed his excitement at my Brazilian bikini wax. Same country, more painful process. And then the conversation degenerated. Now I may never come to know Camille Grammer, sorry, our dinner guest’s motivation for discussing my age but I don’t have to be Mystic Meg to draw a conclusion. She either thinks of me as terribly childish (I hope so), wants to know where I buy my moisturiser (I don’t think so) or she’s ageist (I know so).
So today’s blog is inspired by age and the preoccupation women seem to share with the inevitable multidimensional process we have very little control over, unless your name is Demi Moore. Why are some women so excessively concerned by age that it drives us to become jealous, fearful and envious of youth? Boo!
Question: When you see a younger woman what do you think? A/ Nothing B/ Absolutely nothing or C/ The Bitch is going to steal my husband, job and record collection? You may laugh, but around the world it seems there are many C boxes being ticked. Walk down the Avenue here in Greenwich CT and you will note the female youths sporting army issue riot shields while their more senior counterparts assume sniper style positions. From high up vantage points, way above L’Escale, (the cougar hang out of choice) they single out the young ones and cause general annoyance. Like an itch or bad rash, they share notes on being insecure, washed up and generally being so self indulgent they forget they once enjoyed a youth. But hey, some people are so self-important they think they deserve a birthday twice. Fox news and the Daily Mail both recently reported how women over the age of 50 felt they were becoming the invisible generation. They are probably correct. If I’m faced with a whingeing moaning mini, then I would imagine them invisible too.
Consider this point for a moment, could it possibly be our attitudes that are aging us vs. the physiology of our actual years? Moaners, I have no time for; fun, interesting people, of any age, welcome. I happen to pay little attention to a person’s age, (unless you happen to be breaking the law I might add). I’m currently most concerned about the size of your and my ass (I just had a baby so give me a break) and what I’m going to eat for dinner. My babysitter is 15, my friend’s age’s range between 23–73, my partner is 53 and I have a mental age that is progressively degenerating. You enrich my life? Welcome to my team. All the people in my life were chosen for their personalities, characters, values and morals. I view age merely as a number serving no other purpose, almost like a brand that has been cleverly marketed. It offers individuals, who aren’t intelligent/capable of making their own choice, to be spoon-fed a plateful of judgements and preconceptions. If you are the kind of person who purchases a Burberry or Hilfiger branded item of clothing, purely for the personality and image you feel it creates for you, one day, you may too be diagnosed as an age discriminating candidate. If instead you make your selection based on the cut, quality and fit of the piece, I’d bet you a squirt of my friends Botox, you’re the type of person who cares little about a person’s age and more about their personality.
Are you still with me?
(For any old farts reading this, please press the grannies nose at the top of the screen and the audio will begin and the words will become larger)
Let’s start with my babysitter who is 15, she’s a juvenile, surely not responsible enough to look after my most precious little boy? Then there’s my partner aged 53, with a 14-year age gap, some may question whether we’re at different life stages: him being an old fart. My babysitter is CPR trained, has the nature of Mother Teresa and proactive character of Mark Zuckerberg. My partners goal in life is to work smart, have fun and to be happy, we share exactly the same sentiment and our babies arrival was most definitely not sponsored by Viagra.
Camille Grammer from my new favourite TV show; The Housewives of Beverly Hills, is age preoccupied and I’m betting would answer C in my survey. She believes she was traded in for a younger model. I beg to differ. The ex Playboy model with a recently accrued settlement of $50m following the demise of her 12 year marriage believes her husband, Kelsey traded her in for youth. She made the statement 3 hours after emerging from hair and makeup, clothed head to toe in designer apparel and donning sufficient jewellery to make the Bank of England look cheap.
Fact: Kelsey’s fiancee, Kayte, is several years younger than Camille, so technically she’s correct, but in my opinion, aesthetically, his fiancee is not as visually rewarding as the first lady of the Hills and her body doesn’t score as many points as the super toned Camille’s. So my question. Did Kelsey really leave Camille for a newer, improved model or has he made a serious faus pas and ended up with a lemon? With 2/3 of the aforementioned points in Camille’s favour it begs the question of what does Kelsey see in Kayte? On paper it would appear the only thing Kayte has in her favour is her youth. But really, is age something that creates a sizzle between us or is it our energy, personality and positive attitude that makes us truly attractive as individuals? Maybe Kayte is more down to earth, more giving, less materialistic and more loving? Could I be psychic and onto something?
One of my favourite Camille quotes refers to Kelsey’s desire to live in NYC while he works on Broadway (to pay for their lifestyle as he is the sole breadwinner). His motivation is the commute from NYC to LA would be too tiring for him and would she mind uprooting to be supportive for only a short amount of time? Camille is filmed walking around the 3500 sq ft apartment he chose and is overheard referring to it as too small for her needs. Keep it real girl, too small, for what? All your playmates to come over from the Mansion. What do you need for a family of four, oh and staff of sixteen? Buckingham Palace? Camille may be so overly preoccupied by Kayte’s age; she failed to consider she might have been traded in for a more grounded woman with a genuine personality and a more positive, less cynical outlook than her own. Let’s consider for a moment what we know about Kayte Walsh, Kelsey’s fiancée. She does seem to have vivaciousness about her, a magnetic energy, and a positivism that certainly makes me want to pull up a chair and have a chat. She smiles with her eyes, a sign of sincerity.
Camille on the other hand: she likened herself to Jesus. I made my point.
So for any old bags out there that are concerned about the whippersnappers in your life, I have a suggestion:
Crack a smile, get out of the way of yourself, life is fun. Come join my riot shield and me in L’Escale for a lemonade. We all, just may have fun together.