Successful Older Men Don’t “Choose” Younger Women

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As covered in my new release, Urban Dystrophy [@Amazon], older men don’t point a finger and “choose” who they date, unless the woman in question is a prostitute with a voracious pimp.

There are no guns to anyone’s head,  no coercion, no blackmail…and more often than not, no voodoo.

There are simply two people standing in the same space with motives of their own.

But no matter what those motives happen to be, women call the shots. Period. End of discussion.

The last time I felt deceived into believing that I called the shots was back in my 20’s, fueled by piss, vinegar and testosterone in equal measure.

Since that time, things have changed…for the better, frankly.

To say the very least, I’m happy not to be a woman in her 50’s scouring the earth for Prince Charming.

With this in mind, author Renee Fisher recently penned a tongue-in-cheek article titled, “Why Older Men Should Date Younger Women.”

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/renee-fisher/why-older-men-should-date-younger-women_b_6938060.html

In it she posits 10 reasons why such paradigms “work.”

I will list them and follow with a reality-as-I-know-it discussion.

While I don’t have academic credentials working with people involved in age gap relationships, I have at least 3 doctorates in practical experience.

Before I start, allow me to offer some perspective on where Ms. Fisher is coming from…

She begins with “Women over the age of 50 have been complaining ever since their 50th birthday parties that men their age prefer younger women.”

This is what’s referred to as a set-up, as in you’re being set up to see things from a certain perspective, especially if you’re a female Baby Boomer who’s dating experiences mirror hers.

So here goes:

1. Younger women are universally hot and want sex all the time, except when they are reminding you to take your meds, cooking you great meals or sitting with you in front of the TV, watching all your favorite sports teams in action.

COMMENTS: While it is true that young women are universally hot, it has been my experience that sex happens at the same frequency it does in age-relevant relationships. I might also add that i am usually the one reminding the younger women in my life to take their meds, to learn how to cook, and to seek counseling for texting addiction. Nothing’s a panacea. 

2. Younger women can explain all of the latest music, social media trends and technology to you in a way you can completely understand and appreciate.

COMMENTS: My girlfriend is a computer geek, and while I’m fluent in most geek-speak, getting her to explain something is like pulling teeth from a dragon.

3. Younger women would prefer to be in bed by 9 P.M., rather than going out to a trendy club.

COMMENTS: In spite of the obvious satire here, the younger women I’ve known are into health and fitness and enjoy evenings in front of computers, not bartenders.

4. Younger women take a sincere interest in learning everything they can about the ’50s and ’60s and ’70s.

COMMENTS: Why would I care whether or not someone took an interest in my generation’s formative years? All I have to do is keep an eye on my classic rock collection before it ends up in someone else’s classic rock collection.

5. Younger women love to give massages (while they are naked), apply medicinal salves and ointments to you (while they are naked), and are masters at cleaning your ears and cutting your hair (while they are naked)

COMMENTS: The only women of any age I know who do this are paid in cash.

6. Younger women are attracted to men who are paying alimony and/or child support.

COMMENTS: Younger women are attracted to men who can afford to pay their bills, all of them.

7. Younger women become easily aroused by nose and ear hair and reruns of “Gilligan’s Island.”

COMMENTS: Like women of all ages, grooming is something everyone expects to the same degree, and the last I checked, my girlfriend and I watch the same television shows. 

8. Younger women know all the latest clothing styles, but prefer men who wear shorts, black socks and Crocs.

COMMENTS: At this writing my entire wardrobe consists of John Varvatos, Vince and Prada. 

9. Younger women are universally hot and stay that way, no matter what.

COMMENTS: By the time I’m 80, my girlfriend will still be incredibly hot. So yes, she’s spot-on here. 

10. The most compelling reason for the older man/younger woman scenario is the maturation rate of women vs men.

COMMENTS: The suggestion that sexual attraction to younger women somehow denotes immaturity is the same reason our planet hosts billions of human inhabitants.

In this sense, yea, we should probably all be in therapy.

~~~

“When you live as long as affluent men do, as well as they do, you can’t help but expect more out of life. A successful career is one thing, but just because you can afford beachfront property doesn’t mean you want to spend it with someone who reminds you that one day soon you’ll be buried underneath it.” Urban Dystrophy, Chapter 25, May/December.

Top 10 Baby Boomer Myths – Separating Fact from Stereotype

baby_boombers_1373063cI don’t know about you, but every time I see an ad targeting my generation [those born between 1946 and 1964], I feel like an outsider peering into another universe.

The couple above is what most people of the aforementioned generation are supposed to look like – at least the oldest among us. And I suppose that for many, this is relatively accurate.

I don’t know them, but I am told they exist.

Blog-pic-young-woman-older-man-12090169

While I’m not a “tie guy” or corporate raider, this couple more closely resembles my demographic.

With these misconceptions aside, let’s take a closer look at even more of them:

10 MOST COMMON MYTHS ABOUT BABY BOOMERS

1] Boomers are all the same.

Hardly, as evidenced by the disparity of the couples in the above photographs.

In fact, I’m sure THE ONLY COUPLES I know that resemble the first one are in television ads.

2] Boomers are the “Me” generation.

More so than Millennials?  Gimme a break.

70 percent of Boomers say they have a responsibility to make the world a better place, and 57 percent say they try to buy from companies that give back to their communities.

3] Boomers Technically Challenged.

In case people forgot, Boomers were in the workforce during the evolution of computers, email and the internet, and were the first to understand the value of technology.

82 percent of us are online and 64 percent of us have been online from the outset.

Our online activities include instant messaging, downloading music or movies, financial transactions and online gaming…among others.

4] Boomers are winding down with age.

Is this a joke or what?

Most Boomers I know are working more now that they have money than they did before they had a dime.

The typical Boomer in my world goes to the gym regularly, travels a lot (“60 million took at least one trip last year”), and attends live sporting events (“22 million” by most estimates).

I could go on.

5] Boomers are all wealthy

Collectively Boomers are the wealthiest generation in history.

But it also bears noting that only 9 percent are truly affluent (defined as having pre-tax incomes of $150,000 or more if working, or $100,000 or more if retired).

In fact, one quarter of Boomers have no savings or investments at all, which I know is shocking to most of you who read this blog.

6] Boomers are brand loyal and will not switch

Total crap.

Boomers are just as likely as younger cohorts to experiment with new products. They are actually paying attention to advertising for new products, and 61 percent of Boomers agree that “in today’s marketplace, it doesn’t pay to be loyal to one brand,” compared with 62 percent of those age 18-41.

7] You can capture Boomers with mainstream advertising

Boomers are paying attention to advertising, and 66 percent say that ads have gotten more crude in recent years and another 67 percent say they are less likely to purchase a product if they find the advertising offensive.

23 percent say they consider ads that are geared toward their age group insulting.

Can you blame them?

Turn on any news channel and all you hear about are pocket catheters.

8] Most Boomers are married empty nesters

Only about 1 in 4 Boomers fit the profile of married with adult children who have left home.

37 percent of Boomers still have children under 18 in the home – and one-third of Boomers are single.

Doing the math, that’s tens of millions.

9] Boomers are downsizing their homes

Few Boomers I know ever downsize anything.

Despite the image of older consumers “winding down” as the years progress and simplifying their lives and homes, just 6 percent of Boomers are planning to be living in a smaller residence five years from now.

Moreover, 76 percent plan to live in either a same-sized (their current home or a new home of the same size) or larger home, often much larger, usually with an infinity pool and outdoor hot tub.

10] Boomers are retiring early

Contrary to much of the attention given to the first Boomers’ turning 62 this year and being eligible to take Social Security benefits early, in reality very few Boomers are planning to stop working entirely when they reach retirement age – only 11 percent.

And of those Boomers who know what they are planning to do when they reach retirement age (some two-thirds), 72 percent plan to work either part (65 percent) or full-time (7 percent) after they reach retirement age.

SUMMARY

Most of what you read about Baby Boomers is grossly inaccurate, and this is surprising given the fact that so much effort is put forth marketing to a generation holding the lion’s share of wealth.

When I watch commercials targeting my generation, I just assume it’s target the generation before because I simply cannot relate.

This is not about denial, by the way, though I’m sure there is an element of that in everything we say, do, and feel.

With all of this in mind…

HERE ARE THE 10 MOST COMMON REALITIES OF BABY BOOMERS [LIKE ME]:

1] We tend to date, and, sometimes marry, women much younger than ourselves.

2] Relevance is our crucible, therefore we never stop working, achieving…having something interesting to say at cocktail functions. 

3] We’re sensitive to stereotyping and won’t spend a dime on anyone who doesn’t respect our sense of cultural sovereignty. 

4] We still listen to Zeppelin, but aren’t opposed to new music that involves musicians playing actual instruments.

5] Many of us can kick your butt in the gym.

6] We don’t mind someone else picking up the tab even if we can buy and sell them a hundred times. 

7] Shaving, waxing and laser hair removal are all considered normal maintenance regimens to most of us.

8] 100% of us own notebook computers, desktop computers, Iphones or Droids, Ipads or mobile readers, and bluetooth-enabled headphones.

9] 99% of us drive at least one of the following 5 automobiles: Land Rover, Jaguar, Mercedes, BMW and Porsche.

10] Among my generation, testosterone supplementation is beginning to rival water consumption.

~~~

Is Madonna Really Wearing a Mouthful of Grills?

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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-3336303/Madonna-sports-chic-fedora-bizarre-teeth-grills-enjoying-Spanish-Thanksgiving-lookalike-son-Rocco-duo-sport-hair-style.html

No one would accuse Madonna of being a slouch, resting on her laurels and so on…

She works incessantly, travels the world tour after tour after grueling tour.

But no matter how much Madonna tours, she is still 57, not 25.

Hello memo.

The harder she tries to be chronologically seamless, the farther away she lands.

Racing with the devil is a fool’s errand someone who loves her obviously neglected to mention.

Grills? Seriously?

If my 83-year-old mother wore grills, I’d have her committed.

But for Madonna, it’s an unintended tragic pantomime she can afford to ignore.

Delusion, after all, isn’t against the law.

But even Madonna can’t buy back the bad press.

Sadly, she’s become an embarrassment to the Baby Boom.

Not her accomplishments, not her work ethic, not her contribution to the world of Pop.

But everything else.

If my generation’s greatest fear is maintenance of personal dignity, Madonna is our crucible.

So again, it’s all about money, honey, delusion notwithstanding.

The Most Annoying People In The Gym […and a few good ones thrown in for good measure]

Old-Guy-LiftingI found this article on t-nation.com about gym etiquette amusing, so I thought I’d share it with you.

Most of it targets the behavior of all age demographics, so I’ve slightly twisted it in the direction of the Baby Boom.

Many are cliches pushed to the extreme, but many cliches are extreme without having to be pushed at all.

Here’s the article:

https://www.t-nation.com/powerful-words/10-most-annoying-people-in-the-gym

~~~

1] The Misplaced Crossfitter

After enough testosterone supplementation, many Baby Boomers – both men and women – re-emerge as adolescents and hit the gym like banshees, attempting complex exercises like box jumps and weighted wall balls they see performed by people half their age on Youtube. They attempt to perform them publicly as if no one will notice the sad realities of their efforts. I witnessed one 50-something guy jumping up and down like a Wallaby in what appeared to be a trance. When I asked him what he was doing he just smiled and hopped away. I discovered later on that he just received his first testosterone injections a week ago, and like someone stuck in Purgatory for 30 years, was euphoric over his discovery of a portal back to planet earth.

2] The Phone Zombie

Many older guys use gyms as workplaces. I’m still not convinced they aren’t suffering some psychiatric disability, the whole thing a pantomime played out using a dead phone. Relevance is found in some of the most unlikely places. Whatever the issue, they are certainly consistent, and therefore, memorable. In fact, offering even the vaguest description will elicit a knowing response. In deference to one man in particular, he is having an actual conversation with someone on the other end of the line, but he is so often on the phone that he is now clinically deaf.

3] The Newbie Steroid User

Most of these people begin a steroid regimen to drop body fat without having to spend hours in a gym. They also hope to revitalize their flagging sex lives which certain physicians’ promises of restoring them in exchange for $30,000 a year. Most of these people drop out of sight when their PSA levels rival the national debt and/or they lose a pile in a market downturn.

4] Just About Anyone Doing a Kettlebell Swing

Most older men have no idea what the hell they’re doing in the gym. Without help from a personal trainer, they are like cattle on the edge of a cliff in a hurricane. They’re painful to watch and there is always the temptation to offer guidance. But it has been my experience that guidance is often perceived as a kind of narcissistic wound to men of hubris and resources accustomed to people’s fear and respect in the workplace. Physicians who should know better are some of the worst offenders, as usual. I could get into the irony here.

One old dude threw a cable grip in my direction.

5] The Dumbbell Rack Blocker

I am guilty of this. There are times when I use one end of a dumbbell rack to perform single-arm pulls. But I am also aware of who’s around me. If I see someone lingering near the rack, I’ll move. The point is that many gym newbies [read: older guys who’ve spent their lives in offices and are now on gym floors at the insistence of their primary care physicians] are slow on the uptake, and even indignant towards anyone expecting them to budge.

6] The Bros

I work out around a bunch of older men and women who were – at one time or another – gym addicted. Most of us are now in recovery, but this still doesn’t stop us from spending two hours a day enabling one another. We make a lot of noise when the weights get heavy, but the experience is cathartic, and, in our minds, fine as long as we don’t technically kill anyone.

7] Mr. Octa Set

Some guys attempt to commandeer a 1000 square foot area of the gym in order to perform a particular routine. Most of them are the usual suspects: Affluent and entitled Boomers who are used to having things their way. Fortunately for people like myself, I am comfortable ignoring their boundaries and leading them back to therapy without much in the way of tact.

8] The Crappy Personal Trainer

At my health club there are a few personal trainers who spend more time discussing personal issues with their clients than training them. But this is not the fault of the trainer. When a client is will to pay $100 and hour of someone’s time, they run the show. Of course, the trainer can always fire the client, but it doesn’t make much financial sense as you can imagine. I do happen to know certain personal trainers who won’t train clients that aren’t serious, but I have found that they tend to work less hours.

9] The Talker

My gym caters to an affluent clientele, many of whom are trust fund babies who’ve never held a job, and therefore, have no concept of boundaries. The rest are either psychiatric outpatients or narcissists who’ve never seen a therapist.

10] The Creeper

True story: One day I was in the gym on the stretching mats when I noticed an older man with his junk on full display. A woman next to me happened to notice it at the same moment and immediately deflected her young daughter’s attention avoiding what would inevitably become full blown PTSD. Anyway, I’m not certain whether such men are exhibitionists or just plain senile. I can envision a police interrogation where the officers just shake their heads when the man starts babbling incoherently about the stock market when questioned about a sexually perverse act. Long story short, I reported the incident to the management and I’m told that he now wears undergarments.

 

Okay, so here are three of my own Pet Peeves:

 

 11] Old Ladies With Too Much Perfume

This one is self-explanatory, but thankfully easily remedied over a private discussion with management. I have, at times, felt almost enveloped in what smells like scented mustard gas as my lungs cry out for mercy at the handiwork of a mortician.

12] People Who Read Newspapers While Performing Leg Presses

At more upscale health clubs, this is a commonplace practice. The idea is to be in the gym as directed by one’s primary care physician while also getting a little of what the client wants, which is to not be there at all.

13] People With Antisocial Personality Disorder

Maybe it’s just me, but I see health clubs as urban ecosystems that run according to the sum of their constituent parts. Saying hello is not going to kill anyone. It’s common courtesy if nothing else in an environment filled with people you see every day.

With this in mind, there is one particularly cross older man with a distended midsection that he attempts to conceal with 5x t-shirts pregnant emblazoned with messages of anarchy. He never speaks, never blinks, and always stares straight ahead like a zombie zeroing in on a kill. This guy typifies APD and should be referred immediately to the nearest psychiatric facility. Thankfully, the only other people who come across even remotely this way are cross fitters who relish the outcast model.

 Okay, now for the most awesome people in the gym!

11] Elderly People

Older men and women who go to the gym religiously have the respect of everyone. I’ve never heard a single negative comment or complaint unless the person in question farts, in which case the whole age thing comes up.

12] The Quiet Beasts

Most bodybuilders I know are quiet beasts. They are men of few words [in the gym], focused, serious, and only cordial under duress. I don’t particularly like them [in the gym], but I do admire their determination.

13] Women Who Kick Ass

There is nothing more inspiring than women kicking ass next to us. Taking this a step further, I would prefer a gym filled with nothing but buff women in tights. I mean just for the inspiration and all.

14] Fat People

It’s hard to beat on a fat person when they’re in the gym trying to climb out of their bodies. It’s a Promethean task no one takes on unless their lives depend on it.

15] Injured and Disabled People

God bless these people for getting back into the world and fighting for their dignity. They’re a lesson to all of us to be thankful that a couple of inches off the waist is all we have to accomplish.

A FINAL COMMENT ON OLD PEOPLE IN THE GYM

Everyone understands the inherent grumpiness seen in the aged, but no one appreciates it. From a psychiatric perspective, you have to understand that many of these old men were once “somebody:” Heads of companies, surgeons, lawyers and so on. They had the respect of their peers and their community. No one questioned their validity, their relevance. This is why many men refuse to retire. The rest face a downhill slalom into invisibility and irrelevance and what you see in their sour demeanor is the loss of something they spent their lives building. I feel sorry for these men. While they go to the gym to stay physically relevant, they’re dead everywhere else.

Time to Get Tough: A Midlife Note to Myself

ferrell-old-1_2790746bOkay so by now everyone knows the world is pretty much screwed.

The brighter among us keep our TV’s off, our laptops tuned to celebrity gossip, and our televisions glued to re-runs of “Friends.”

The rest [myself included] tune to the news which by design provokes anxiety, which enable networks to sell advertising at top dollar prices.

Anyway, I’ve been traveling around a bit and it’s a cauldron of anxiety.

Logically, the odds are in my favor, but still I allow my emotions to row the boat.

This kind of thinking is why some of the world’s greatest art was created by depressives and drug-addicts.

30 years ago [longer, actually], the problems of the world were an abstraction.

Now they’re dinner guests.

~~~

I bring all of this up because as we age we feel the pressure of life from the front end, rather than the back the it used to be when we did dumb shit like jump off of 50-foot cliffs into a tiny pools of water just for the hell of it.

The key is to balance the pressure, but as those of us in this particular chapter of life know, easier said than done.

What can I do versus what should I do?

What I do know is that feelings of vulnerability are a recipe for disaster for older men used to being on top of the world.

It dismantles us piece by painful piece – if we let it.

So I don’t let it.

I want to life life full and hearty, but with an eye on reality – my reality – our collective reality.

Remember, the only difference between youth and adulthood is ignorance.

If you can see yourself and the world around you objectively, you can use it to dissuade yourself from doing the aforementioned dumb shit so you can focus on doing fun shit that doesn’t kill you prematurely.

In the end, you have to be tough enough to accept what is so you can walk away with enough wind at your back to see life the way you did when you were immortal.

Observing a Day of Silence and Solidarity

PARIS, FRANCE - JANUARY 12:  French troops patrol around the Eifel Tower on January 12, 2015 in Paris, France. France is set to deploy 10,000 troops to boost security following last week's deadly attacks while also mobilizing thousands of police to patrol Jewish schools and synagogues.  (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***

PARIS, FRANCE – JANUARY 12: French troops patrol around the Eifel Tower on January 12, 2015 in Paris, France. France is set to deploy 10,000 troops to boost security following last week’s deadly attacks while also mobilizing thousands of police to patrol Jewish schools and synagogues. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

What Constitutes “Wealthy” to Urban Boomers

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Living paycheck to paycheck while making a combined $500,000 a year is considered “normal.”

No Seriously.

Financial Samurai ran an article not long ago titled “Scraping by on $500,000 A Year.”

It was a good start in defining “wealth” against “expenses” in big cities.

Here’s the aforementioned article:

http://www.financialsamurai.com/scraping-by-on-500000-a-year-high-income-earners-struggling/

~~~

In any major metro area of the United States, a reasonably priced older home in a reasonably nice neighborhood [read: reasonably nice, not top of the line] starts at around $1,000,000.

Anything less is either a small condo or a tear-down.

I know, right.

In order to qualify to purchase one of these homes, you’ll need an income of approximately $300,000 no matter what anybody tells you to the contrary, including yourself.

It also warrants noting that 6000 ft. lots are priced somewhere in the $850,000 range, and with construction costs for a custom home on the same lot running about $1,200,000, you have to double your earnings.

You’ve now in over 2.1 million and haven’t forked over a single electricity bill, not to mention property taxes that will run in the $55,000 range…and I haven’t even started calculating the cost of a gold-digger.

This is why so many homes around here [and in places like, say, Beverly Hills] are held in family estates, and then gifted to offspring in the form of nest eggs.

All the kids have to do then is cover are property taxes and upkeep, which means they can get by on $250,000, as long as they don’t have kids, own $100,000 cars, or take vacations.

Hell, private school education alone rivals property taxes, so you can see where this is going.

No wonder people who earn $500,000 consider themselves upper middle class.

Of course, if they earned $500,000 in income and had 5 million in a diversified investment portfolio, then they’d most likely consider themselves upper, upper middle class.

Doing the math, they’d be looking at a yield around $400,000 on the 5 mil taxed as capital gains, and $500,000 taxed at 39%.

Now they could take three vacations and still save the $7300.00 at the end of the year.

As for Financial Samurai‘s breakdown…

FS-500K-Student-Loan

Interesting breakdown, but that “$7300” left over wouldn’t have a shot in hell of making it to the savings account for most people I know.

Why?

Because 3 vacations a year for a total of “$18,000 a year” is a joke. It’s easily twice that amount.

Round trip business class tickets alone from Houston to Los Angeles are in the $1500 range per person.

Hotel rooms in the “One king bed, no sitting area” will run $685.00 per night, with small suites starting in the $1700.00/night range at places like the Beverly Wilshire in Los Angeles.

You also must accept the fact that miscellaneous expenses are going to fall in the $1500.00 range even if you don’t happen to wander into Barney’s.

You can see where this is going.

HOW THE “AFFLUENT” SEE REAL WEALTH

The following is a letter copied verbatim from the web from a very successful couple.

While some of it may shock you, it’s representative of how many in my general demographic see real wealth.

“I have no idea how anyone could live on $500,000 a year. I make $1.0 million a year as an equity partner in a large international law firm and through real estate investing. My wife makes $1.5 million as a cosmetic surgeon. We live in DC. We have 2 kids. After all of the taxes, childcare, mortgage payments, car payments, etc., we are literally living paycheck to paycheck. Our house is about 2.5 million, nice but not exorbitant. We each drive 911s and we have a farm in the country and a house at the Eastern Shore. Again- nice, but hardly movie-star living and there are many people who have much nicer farms and shore houses than we do. I think that to live comfortably in a high priced area like DC, you really need $4 million a year. This will allow you to save some money and live an extremely comfortable life style. Fortunately, we are relatively early in our careers– early 40’s. Within the next 3-5 years, we will be at $4 million. There really is not a moment to lose in this game if you want to live comfortably without worrying about money.”

You can’t make this shit up.

Now you know why $500,000 a year is chicken scratch.

LESSONS LEARNED

1] Be an equity partner in a large international law firm or investment house.

2] Be a successful plastic surgeon.

3] Be an a-list celebrity.

4] Be a world-class pro athlete.

5] Be a member of the lucky sperm bank. 

Louis Vuitton Appeals to Upscale Baby Boomers With Music

Bowie

http://superhypeblog.com/music/how-louis-vuitton-appeals-to-upscale-baby-boomers-with-music

Baby Boomers are the generation born between 1946 and 1964.

If you’re a member, you’re somewhere between the ages of 51 and 69.

So juveniles by today’s standards.

Many of us sit squarely in the middle, which means we’re either in – or fast approaching – our 60’s.

We’re in shape, financially independent, technologically savvy.

What better than to appeal to an affluent demographic that has become increasingly larger and more important as our population ages?

In an historical context, we’ve set new precedents, as people our age were, at one time, either dead or walking billboards for Mr. Rogers.

That was then.

Now, thanks to designers like Louis Vuitton [and others, like John Varvatos], we can finally buy clothing that feels the way clothing felt back in the days when we were young, rebellious and filled with hope and promise.

It was a brilliant move.

Louis Vuitton has strategically positioned itself as a classic, upscale choice for the affluent Baby Boomer generation.

No wonder my wardrobe collection looks a lot like it did back in 1978.

Brace yourself for an Aspen makeover, as people start looking a lot like they did back when when they couldn’t afford it – not to mention good concert tickets to see David Bowie.

Okay, so in addition to Vuitton, here are my top favorite designers for men [in no particular order]:

Vince

Alexander McQueen

Belstaff

Dolce  & Gabbana

Armani

Prada

Gucci

James Perce

John Varvatos

Maison Margiela

Saint Laurent

Hudson Jeans

Ralph Lauren [Black label]

…and of course, Converse.

Do’s and Don’ts for Men Over 50 [According to the WWW]

joe-perry-nice

Pooled from the WWW come the do’s and don’ts for older men, not that anyone pays attention to any of it…myself included.

Nonetheless – because I’m asked about it all the freaking time – I offer you the list:

APPROPRIATE:

1] Dye hair

Note: I started dying my hair at 18 and still do. Nobody cares.

2] Hair trimming

Note: I had to Google this. I assume it’s similar to a haircut.

3] Leather jackets

Note: I have 23, but only wear 6 of them.

4] Cardigans

Note: I had to Google this one just to see Mr. Rogers.

5] Sweater vests

Note: See #4.

6] Hair replacement

Note: No big deal. Many men I know do touch-ups on the hairline, some on their eyebrows.

7] Graphic tees

Note: Right on.

8] Cowboy boots

Note: Sure. But not in my closet.

9] Biker boots

Note: I have 5 pairs.

10] Get an annual physical

Note: Who doesn’t get an annual physical?

11] Dress for comfort

Note: In other words, dress like a teenager when we feel like it? I do it all the time.

12] Own and wear more than one pair of jeans

Note: I’ve lost count.

13] Use moisturizer

Note: I have so many damn products I have to use a Magic Marker on the products to remind myself of the order in which to use them.

14] Date women close to their age

Note: Seriously? The last time I dated someone close to my age was when I was a teenager. My girlfriend at the time was 17, which is 11 years younger than the woman I currently date.

15] Wear a good watch

Note: I don’t wear a watch, but have no problem with people who do.

16] Embrace baldness

Note: Embrace baldness if not embracing it means lacquered comb-overs and baseball caps that people begin to suspect are sewn into your scalp.

17] Be a silver fox and let gray go

Note: With enough money nobody will notice the color of your hair anyway.

18] Occasional jewelry besides wedding band

Note: Some men can pull off wearing a lot of jewelry. Others can’t. If you know yourself you know where you stand.

19] Sandals, no socks

Note: How about no sandals, period?

20] Flip flops

Note: See #19.

21] Baseball caps

Note: Sure. Why not? Just not all the time, unless you’re The Edge, in which case it’s totally fine.

SIMPLE-THE-EDGE-14-09-10-U2-Wallpaper22] Converse type sneakers

Note: If you don’t own Converse sneakers, I’d see a therapist.

NOT APPROPRIATE:

1] Spray tan

Note: What they’re referring to, I assume, is something along the lines of George Hamilton, so no.

2] Have/grow a soul patch

Note: I once had a soul patch, then I didn’t, then I did. Billy Bob Thornton looks good with one, but I’m still on the fence about mine.

ep408-own-master-class-billy-bob-thornton-3-949x5343] Face-lift/mini face-lift

Note: If it looks natural, why not? Over-indulgence never goes unnoticed, and not in a good way.

4] Wax eyebrows for shape

Note: Finally, I agree.

5] Wax chest, back, legs or armpits

Note: Agree. Shaving it all is less painful.

6] Brow lift

Note: Why the hell not? See #3.

7] eyelid surgery

Note: I actually knew someone who’s eyelids were blinding him, so he had them lifted. See #3.

~~~

Obviously, all of this is complete crap.

Nobody cares what others think about what they do but themselves.

This notwithstanding, it either works or it doesn’t.

The good news is that it won’t take long for you to hear about it if it doesn’t.

Cantankerous Senior Syndrome [CSS]: Tough Talk to the Undead

0dbef4f2-9a57-44d4-9668-abadca21328bIf you’re a cantankerous old coot, stoop-shouldered, brittle and in competition with cyanide gas for personality of the year, I’m not surprised.

Chances are your career is in the rear-view mirror; your wife of 50 years no longer recognizes the fearless and inspired man she once married; and the creeping specter of invisibility and irrelevance shadow you like ghoul with a scythe.

I bring this up in response to a recent encounter at my health club with a member of the undead.

Note: The following is a true story and one well worth broaching with a psychiatrist should you happen to find allusions to your own psychopathology in any of it.

~~~

Courage and perseverance have a magical talisman, before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish into air.” John Quincy Adams

~~~

“Once upon a time …” Jacob Grimm

~~~

Subtlety is not one of my virtues.

But I am also not without compassion, empathy or remorse.

So while I’m not a particularly soft touch, I’m no sociopath.

To wit, the other day I found myself at the gym doing some lower back exercises when I noticed to my immediate left an older gentleman performing an exercise that, to be perfectly honest, defied explanation.

He was bent over at the waist holding two rubber grips, attempting to perform what I assumed to be bicep curls.

Mindful of the crusty and often paranoid nature of many such men, I made friendly inquiry into exactly what it was that he was trying to accomplish.

“Are you working your back?”

“No! I’m working my biceps as you can see!” he said with a huff.

I have to admit that I don’t do well in situations like these.

I was trying to be helpful and his response to me didn’t sit well.

Most people would take the hint and drop it, but I’m not most people.

I went in.

“You realize you’re working your back with those limited motion pulls, right? Your biceps aren’t even engaged.” 

With that, I thought the man was on the precipice of a seizure as his face turned a dark shade of scarlet.

“I teach physical therapy! I know exactly what I’m doing!!!” he yelled like a man at a Devil’s Crossroads.

“Really?” I went on.

“Then don’t you have the vaguest idea what you’re doing?”

He threw down the grips and stormed off back into his own Private Idaho, I assume.

What he failed to appreciate was the fact that I acknowledged him at all.

~~~

I bring this up because many older men die long before they’re technically declared dead by a coroner.

You can hear it in their voices, see it in their fading stature and presence, feel in the acerbic tone of their discourse.

Whatever once stood firm is not translucent, vaporous almost.

This man was no more than his late 60’s, and yet came across as a man dragged by his ears straight from Purgatory to endure another day of irrelevance in broad daylight.

Life does not have to be this way.

I know men 10 years his senior who stand tall, push hard, maintain relevance in every way.

They do not crumble under the pressure of years, but rather, they take stock of their blessings and carve them into lasting monuments that light the way for succeeding generations.

I have never heard a single criticism or missive from a young man or woman about any older person who maintains dignity and strength in the face of time. Never. Not once.

They are the way forward for all of us, to follow as beacons of hope while navigating the passage of years.

I honor all of them. Hats off.

This is what aging is supposed to look like, to be.

This is its gift to us all.

On a related note, there is a 78-year-old man [guy] at my gym who hangs out with the rest of us in a way that feels almost timeless.

Has he had his share of ailments over the decades? Yes.

As he said to me, “I may have been through hell and back in this lifetime, but what I learned from all of it is that none of us are perfect, but almost as few have the courage to persevere.”

Amen to that.

POSTSCRIPT

Aging is a bitch.

Nothing works the way it once did.

Joints ache, muscles take longer to heal.

You look in the mirror and see the lines, the changing face of time.

These are things that none of us can escape.

What we can escape is how we approach the war, and yes, a war it is.

life is not for the faint-hearted.

And while youth and beauty have their own unique merits, no one ever appreciates it until it’s gone.

And by then, pray you have a mentor who can help you get through it one piece.

In the end, I guess you could say that my attempt to contribute something to the aforementioned man’s life on that gym floor is the same contribution I attempt to make on the lives of men half my age.

Getting older is a time in life for sharing, for giving back, for making the world a better, more inspired place for everyone.

Irrelevance, like I said, should not be the job of the coroner.