Drugging America – One Advert At a Time

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“Pharmaceutical companies have seized on the decline in testosterone levels as pathological and applicable to every man. They aim to convince men that common effects of aging like slowing down a bit and feeling less sexual actually constitute a new disease, and that they need a prescription to cure it. This is a seductive message for many men, who just want to feel better than they do, and want to give it a shot, literally.” From op-ed contributor [New York Times] John La Puma.

As I have written about exhaustively, “Low-T” as it is referred is has become a meme for institutionalized drug dealing in America.

~~~

This year alone, the FDA has issued a number of warnings to physicians and male patients regarding the use of testosterone drugs, which they say may increase the risk of heart attack and stroke. They’re currently urging doctors and drug makers to warn patients about the potential life-threatening risks they pose. The FDA also wants doctors to prescribe testosterone only to men who are suffering from low testosterone caused by a medical condition confirmed by laboratory tests.

But these days are are no tests, just questions:

PHYSICIAN:

How can I help you?

PATIENT:

I’m feeling a little sluggish and my sex drive isn’t what it used to be.

PHYSICIAN:

Let’s start you off with 1 cc of testosterone a week and shoot me an email to let me know how you’re feeling.  

PATIENT:

Thanks, Doc. It’s nice to finally meet someone who gets it.

~~~

With billions in profits on the line, the objective is to bring testosterone supplementation mainstream, like taking a daily multi-vitamin, or prescribing Adderall to people who can’t read the encyclopedia Britannica backwards without falling asleep.

For those who may be squeamish about needles, the industry has introduced a plethora of innovative drug delivery systems:

1. Transdermal Skin Patch: Androderm is a skin patch worn on the arm or upper body, applied once a day. This may cause severe itching and fluid-filled blisters.

2. Gels: AndroGel and Testim are most commonly used and come in individual packets of clear testosterone gel. It’s applied once a day and absorbed directly through the skin. AndroGel, Axiron and Fortesta also come in a pump that delivers the prescribed amount of testosterone. Natesto is a gel applied through the nose. These gels may leave skin red, irritated or itchy.

3. Testosterone Stick: Similar to an underarm deodorant, it’s applied directly to the skin.

4. Mouth Patch: Striant is a tablet that is applied to the upper gum twice per day. It continuously releases testosterone into the blood through the oral tissues. Men may experience an unpleasant or bitter taste in the mouth, difficulty tasting food, stinging or swelling of the lips, and gum pain, tenderness, swelling, and irritation in the mouth.

5. Injections and implants: Testosterone can also be injected directly into the muscles or implanted as pellets in the soft tissues. The body will slowly absorbed the testosterone into the blood stream. Side effects include inflammation and pain.

6. Testosterone pills: Two of the more common formulas are called methyltestosterone and testosterone undecanoate. Some evidence has shown that oral testosterone may cause damage to the liver.

You can’t beat that.

Of course, all testosterone therapy options have annoying side effects, including:

• Increased risk of heart attack and stroke
• Stimulation of prostate tissue
• Serious blood clots
• Hair loss
• Acne or oily skin
• Mild fluid retention
• Breast enlargement
• Increased risk of blood clots
• Worsening of sleep apnea
• Shrunken testicles
• Increased aggression and mood swings
• Decrease in sperm count

Then there’s the link between Testosterone and Prostate Cancer, but who’s counting?

~~~

The truth is testosterone injections should never be the first line of defense when it comes to treating low T.

What many men don’t realize is that testosterone is a lifelong therapy. Once you’re on these therapies, a physician monitors your levels every 6 months or even more frequently. It’s critical to explore all your options and look to natural methods, as opposed to jumping into replacement therapy.

But I’m wasting my breath here because I’m not a physician, and therefore, have no idea what the hell I’m talking about.

All I do know is that if you have an actual condition that could benefit from testosterone supplementation, by all means go for it.

But the point of this and other articles is that everyone is now taking testosterone to be bigger, badder, better than they were before. They do it for the edge it gives them over mortals. The allure is hard to dismiss.

They also have a battery excuses at their disposal to justify the drugs.

Here’s the biggest:

Testosterone decreases by 1 percent each year after.

Then there’s…

• Increase in belly fat
• Weight gain
• Low to no sex drive (we certainly can’t have that)
• Fatigue
• Risk of depression
• Irritability
• Mood Swings
• Low energy
• Bone density
• Increased risk of diabetes

Who wants any of those when a simple prescription can alleviate all of them?

Personally, I follow another regimen:

1. Limit alcohol intake: Even drinking moderate amounts of alcohol can cause testosterone levels to plummet.

2. Reduce stress: be mindful of factors in your life that create stress. Mental or physical stress can quickly depress your levels. The stress hormone cortisol suppresses the body’s ability to make testosterone.

3. Cardio: High-intensity exercise can cut stress in half but don’t overdo it. Injuries and fatigue are sure signs that your workout may lower testosterone.

4. Zinc: The mineral zinc is important for testosterone production. Look to protein-rich foods like meats and fish. If you decide to supplement zinc, stick to a dosage of less than 40mg per day.

5. Vitamin D: This is a big secret when it comes to healthy testosterone levels. Foods like shellfish, tuna, salmon, egg yolks, beans and others work great. You can also look into taking vitamin D supplements, 1,000-2,000 IU per day (that’s what I personally do) and monitor your levels after that. Vitamin D levels should be between 30-60.

6. Limit Sugar: When in doubt, say no to sugar. Testosterone levels decrease because sugar leads to a high insulin level.

7. Healthy fats: Foods like olive oil, raw nuts, coconut oil, grass-fed meats and avocados are essential for building testosterone — 50-70 percent of your diet should include healthy fats.

Having said this, i can personally attest to the fact that testosterone coupled with a whole new array of drug cocktails absolutely, positively provide a bigger, badder edge.

I could lift more weight, sleep less, have more energy, lose belly fat [like, all of it], get lean while building muscle…and on and on…

There’s a reason professional athletes look the way they do no matter how much they travel, how little they sleep and how hard they play.

But most people aren’t professional athletes, which is lost on everyone but professional athletes.

SUMMARY REMARKS

I’m sure that most people think the world I talk about is fiction, that I either have a vivid imagination, or I’m completely insane.

This simply cannot be in the real world.

Boys grow up to be men who get married have children and then retire and die long before they’re technically dead.

This is considered normal.

But in my world there is no such thing as growing up when you can afford not to.

The point is to age well.

Death itself s irrelevant because you don’t have to put up with the indignity of falling apart.

When you acculturated to think this way, drugs are a no-brainer.

How Gold-Diggers Parse Love

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The following account is real.

I bring this to you not because it news, but because it’s not:

~~~

Man:

Did you ever really love me?

GD:

Honestly, the first year of our relationship I was very much in love with you. We traveled all over the world, stayed in beautiful hotels, dined at great restaurants. It was wonderful. Then your business went downhill and we stopped doing things.

Man:

We stopped traveling but we still did things. 

GD:

What things? We mostly stayed at home and watched movies.

Man:

So you were in love with the lifestyle.

GD:

You were the lifestyle.

~~~

Understand that many men are simply incapable of falling in love with any woman who doesn’t satisfy an exacting set of physical standards.

The problem is that gold-diggers have those standards etched into the fabric of their DNA, so they hold all the cards.

And people wonder why so many affluent older men become trapped in vicious cycles of defeated expectations, as they try to get “perfect” women to love them for who they are.

In my world, fortunes come and go every day, mostly under these circumstances.

Aging is a weird thing. We learn more about a lot of things, but the basics never change: love, lust, money, but in the reverse order.

 

Super Ripped, Super Shredded Men Over 50 – and Reality

Fess6

Just so you know where I’m coming from, I’ve been active in the fitness lifestyle my entire life.

In fact, it could be argued that fitness interfered with my personal and professional life on more than one occasion, and over a period of many, many years.

Thus, to suggest in any way that I’m an outsider where this is concerned is naive.

I’ve been in this world, know the player-profiles, understand the mindset.

So let’s get real.

By the time you’re my age [60], things change. You can no longer pack on dense muscle while bleeding fat. It isn’t going to happen –– not naturally.

This means you’re going to need extra help, like testosterone supplementation coupled with 3 or 4 other pharmaceutical agents designed to “compliment” one another.

One helps build strength, another cuts inflammation…you get the point.

Going down this road is a conscious choice many men make when mortality is beating down the doors and there’s nothing left but an aging body.

The psychological profiles of these men are all similar: They are most often vain, arrogant, entitled and filled with rage.

Why?

Because there is nothing else in their lives to help mitigate the attrition.

They’re left with a disintegrating asset, rather than an expanding mind and soul; and asset on a collision course with destiny no matter how many syringes they jam into their bloated veins.

Do I feel the psychological pressure of mortality?

Absolutely. I feel it every day of my life, which is why I have a life beyond my physical body.

I know this is a shocking revelation to many, that there is anything at all worth exploring beyond the physical.

Surprise surprise.

My creative pursuits alone are a full time job, not to mention my relationship, which also includes two dogs and two cats as big as dogs.

This scenario is what most refer to as a balanced life, which does pull time away from workouts, perfect eating and regular blood work necessary to monitor elevated liver enzyme and PSA levels while on steroids.

In this sense, fitness can become ab addiction like alcoholism or drug addiction or sex addiction or gambling addiction or any of the other addictions that raid the dopamine mines and turn one’s life into a living nightmare of emptiness.

http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/science/2013/07/what_is_dopamine_love_lust_sex_addiction_gambling_motivation_reward.html

For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Newton’s Third law of Motion

But I’m not here to beat up on men who take care of themselves. Hardly.

I think men should take exemplary care of themselves, but to understand that we are all human, and to expect results beyong what the body will naturally deliver will require more than a healthy lifestyle.

Go back to the blood test. If it’s normal, the rest is up to you and the genetics you were born with.

But no matter what your genetics have to say about it, age is the Supreme Court of physicality.

You’re not getting out of life unscathed.

We all pay the price, which is why it is so critical for all of us as older men to have lives outside of the gym.

In the end, there is nothing more pathetic than an aging man with nothing to show for himself but low body fat and a dark tan.

Now you know why so many of us are punchlines.

“Manorexia:” It’s Not Just Women

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For nearly a decade celebrity jeweler Stephen Webster, 56, pictured with Christina Aguilera, fought a private battle with anorexia [and depression].

At his lowest point, Stephen Webster, who is 5’10” tall, weighted 112 pounds.

By comparison, Mick Jagger, who is 5’10” tall, weighs 161 pounds.

I’ll let you ponder that for a moment…

~~~

Okay, now that you have that image firmly in your head, you should know that after fighting through his disorder, he is now 154 pounds.

Hardly robust, but not on a feeding tube.

So, good.

~~~

Men of my socioeconomic demographic are often found at the gym, if only because they appear to live in them.

Most are in their late 40’s to early 50’s because that’s about as far as you can push back on the aging process and still land on your feet.

By the time you hit your late 50’s, you can land on one foot, but it’s not as pretty.

Having said this, anyone who’s spent a lifetime keeping fit will tell you that at least a tinge of obsession is necessary to maintain it.

For myself, eating is usually a nightmare.

Let me phrase this another way: For myself, eating is something I have lodged firmly in my head from the moment I wake up.  

It’s not like it was back in the day when I looked forward to a breakfast of half and half over Frosted Flakes and two whole eggs over easy in actual butter, which I also applied to toasted white Sunbeam bread.

I know. Great right?

Now it’s 6 boiled egg-whites and a bowl of steel cut oats with almond butter and a banana.

If I ate the first breakfast for a week I’d die on the gym floor.

First, I need good carbs, ones that burn slowly, hence the oats.

If I ate the first one my blood sugar would spike, then crash…me along with it. And if that didn’t do me in the saturated fat would.

See, blood sugar becomes a big deal as you age, particularly for men like me who workout a lot.

While I am not diabetic, I do experience bouts of hypoglycemia when i don’t take in enough calories to carry me through an intense workout.

For more on hypoglycemia, click here: https://www.med.umich.edu/intmed/endocrinology/patients/Hypoglycemia.htm

I experienced the same thing as a young man, but now I’m more conscious of it, as I am of everything else because I feel more physically vulnerable than I did back then.

This is what I refer to as age-acquired neurosis.

So not only am I not eating anything I feel like putting in my mouth in an effort to avoid all the aforementioned problems, but I also want to keep my body fit and trim.

Now the plot is as thick as pack ice:

1] I think about when to eat so that I have the energy necessary to fuel my workouts.This alone is exhausting.

2] I carefully consider healthy food choice alternative, which is also a pain in the ass. 

3] I want to maintain a healthy appearance, which is predicated on the previous two line items. Now eating is kind of like a second job.

Back to Stephen Webster and many others like him, physical appearance can become an obsession after a while because it’s so hard to maintain.

Add an addictive personalty, ambition and vanity, and you’re completely and utterly screwed.

I know men at my gym who are on the hamster wheel, working out 3 times a day in race to beat time.

They never do.

Most of them are anorexic and in complete denial.

They eat just enough to get through their grueling workouts and them eat again to get through the next one in line.

They have no personal lives. And their interactions with others is limited to discussions about workouts and diet.

I’m sure you know a few yourself.

Pity them. They are in pain even if they don’t realize it.

Their bodies are shutting down, their lives have burned down to an ember of balance.

In this sense, they’re already dead.

If you think I’m being overly dramatic, check out Stephen Webster’s struggles for yourself:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-3328368/My-10-year-battle-MANOREXIA-s-not-just-women-Celebrity-jeweller-Stephen-Webster-reveals-despite-gilded-life-tortured-fear-eating.html

OVERVIEW

I will always dance delicately near the edge in order to meet my needs without falling off the cliff.

It’s a struggle we all face as we age and want to live healthy, balanced lives.

Some turn to “youth-enhancing” drugs to help maintain their strength and low body-fat without having to severely restrict their diets, but they are killing themselves in other ways as they swap one addiction for another.

Average people have no idea what I’m talking about.

But I don’t know any of them.

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.

Why [some] Middle-Aged White Americans Are Dying Before Their Time

BBmLL3U.img© Credit: Peter Hince/Getty Images Man at Sea Side Holding Bottle of Beer, Mid Section Credit: Peter Hince/Getty Images

What you’re looking at is a cliche that massacres every tenet of urban survival.

You know what I’m talking about.

This notwithstanding, I know very few middle-aged men who look like this guy.

Most of us have too much self-respect to allow ourselves to fall into complete ruin.

I might also add that I live in a very small world, given the the preponderance of obesity in America.

http://www.msn.com/en-us/health/medical/middle-aged-white-americans-are-dying-more-than-they-should-be/ar-BBmLBvP?li=BBgzzfc

In a nutshell, this study [see article] concludes that middle-aged Americans, classified as those between the ages of 45 and 54 – emphasis on those with less education – were more likely to die in middle age due to suicide or alcohol and drug poisoning.

The culprit, according to the study, is the 2008 financial collapse.

But the study also found that black, Hispanic and all other older Americans (65 and up) have continued to see longer lives.

Why is this?

The article doesn’t address it, but I can: Money.

In other words, if you weren’t screwed completely in 2008, you’re probably going to live a long healthy life.

6 KEY ELEMENTS

It’s been my experience that 6 key elements must be in place in order for an older man to stay at the top of his game.

…and all of them are tangentially related to money.

So here goes [surprise surprise]:

1] Financial security

Notes: Money is always thicker than blood. It’s first in line followed closely by everything else.

You’ll need enough to cover the cost of a nice place to live, a reliable car, a health club membership…and, of course, Whole Foods.

The rest of your life can take care of itself if Whole Foods doesn’t break you first.

2] Supportive wife or partner

Notes: If you’ve been married a long time and your wife is out of shape, she will probably want you to be out of shape so she doesn’t have to worry about being dumped.

This is a bigger problem than you might imagine and a bigger hurdle than many of you will even want to consider after seeing #1.

3] Healthy lifestyle

Notes: Wife/partner or not, a healthy lifestyle is the only way to age well. Not aging well is not worth the ride. It’s also 10 times the cost.

4] Culture group that supports and encourages your objectives

Notes: People who live healthy lifestyles tend to hang around others who share their values.

If the group you’re in begins to remind you of your own demise, find another group. 

Remember, life doesn’t give a crap what you do. It only sees the bottom line.

Any psychiatrist will tell you this for $200.00, but you’ll have to be able to fork over $200.00, plus additional therapy if coping with not having enough becomes a problem.

5] Comfort with technology

Notes: Generally speaking, the older men I know are very comfortable with technology.

While this may stand out as incongruous with the previous 4 bullet points, it’s everything but.

While technology helps keep us relevant, being on a first name basis with the people at the Apple store can be as expensive as gambling addiction.

6] Don’t isolate

Interacting with others is crucial to one’s mental health.

Some guys talk about leaving everything behind and heading off into the sunset on a wing and a prayer.

Of course, Icarus tried the same thing and it didn’t end well.

icarus_mcalister1

I guess he couldn’t afford therapy.

How Success Changes Middle Aged Men

Male Grooming Arnold Ferrier Photo Bill Morton

Male Grooming Arnold Ferrier Photo Bill Morton

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2893083/Would-let-husband-shave-chest-growing-trend-middle-aged-men-wives-say.html

As you will note in the article [above], chest shaving has become commonplace.

It’s also one of many manifestations of what many middle-aged men do once they have achieved a considerable measure of success.

Without that one element [success], there is no rationale for self-idolatry.

~~~

I know this guy in the restaurant business.

When he started out, it was all humility; dressing down, shaking hands, strung out in the quest for relevance.

Then over time and a lot of hard work, his efforts paid off.

He became the proud co-owner of a successful string of hip urban bistro’s with lots of national notice.

Eventually, like others of new-found success, he upgraded his car, his home…his lifestyle.

But something else happened as well: He changed his appearance. All of it.

His once thin frame now boasts long, lean muscle wrapped in a bronze glaze.

His chest, arms, back and legs are completely shaven.

His clothing went from $16 Haynes 100% cotton Tees to $180 John Varvatos V-Neck Jersey Knits.

His Timex “Ironman” was replaced with an assortment of bracelets of various materials and designs; the accouterments of celebrities, rock stars…and wealthy older men who don’t have to care what you think of them, which is how you know they’ve “arrived.”

Gone are the days of the obligatory handshake with a smile.

That’s also been upgraded to a certain vibe of self-righteous aloofness suggestive of someone who now resents how much ass they had to kiss to get to where they are, and now its payback time.

~~~

Without success, older men fade.

They don’t have the fuel to propel change.

In this sense, success is like a transfusion.

While average people adapt to circumstances and resign themselves to an average existence, successful tend to men stand out in crowds.

Even those who practice humility cannot hide the lining of confidence that follows them wherever they go.

In a way, they’re like beacons of hope in an otherwise paralyzing existential nightmare.

And people wonder why The Kardashians are America’s first family.

Is Izabel Goulart the Preferred Female Physique of the Successful Older Man?

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Victoria’s Secret model, Izabel Goulart, 30, 5’9,” 117 lbs.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-3250622/Supermodel-Izabel-Goulart-puts-cheeky-display-tiny-bikini-frolics-beach-Rio-Janeiro.html

Disclaimer: What older men claim to prefer in terms of physical proportion in women –– and what they actually crave behind closed door are often two entirely different things.

This aside, according to the vast – and I mean VAST – majority of affluent older men I happen to know, the preference is “skinny and proportionate” like Ms. Goulart [above].

In fact, this look has become so ingrained in this upper echelon demographic that every woman exhibits symptoms of an eating disorder.

But why exactly do such men choose skinny women over what every poll ever conducted in the history of mankind has indicted: a preference for curves?

Top 6 Reasons:

#1] They’re “safe.”

Skinny is the safe choice. No one will put you down for choosing a thin woman.

The are no “saddlebags” references or related vitriol likely to embarrass and man who wants the world to see his conquest on an existential plane.

#2] Easy to physically maneuver, mostly in bed.

Fem-bigot-ageist narrative suggests that men prefer skinny women because they are easier to physically dominate.

While this is certainly true, one must also understand that older men are less inclined to make sex a full-on workout, so the more a woman can do the better.

#3] The smaller they are, the bigger “you” are.

As every man who sleeps with women knows, the bigger they are the smaller “you” look.

Conversely, the smaller they are, the more you resemble a porn star.

I’ve heard men say that a drop in just 10 pounds can add a full inch in both length and girth.

On a related note, men report that with skinny women they can penetrate deeper because there are no “fat ass cheeks or thighs to work around.”

And while I have little experience in this regard, it does make sense from the standpoint of basic physics.

#4] Look great in designer apparel, or anything else for that matter. 

As one man put it, “I have dated a few tall skinny model types, and there is absolutely a feeling of “Winning” with one by your side. I have precious little use for social standing at this point in my life but it is a nice, unique perk.”

Such women are born and bred for fashion, which is why they go to Gucci instead of Target.

Their commodity value hinges on their ability to morph into whatever a man of the world envisions his mate to look like, particularly in public.

And because their frames of reference are all the same, their women tend to resemble one another.

#5] Good future prospects of maintaining desirable weight.

Like any investment, men are looking at all aspects of an acquisition, longevity being one of them.

If he builds a house today, will it be just as attractive 20 years from now?

So while “curvy” women may be fun for many in the bedroom, skinnier ones hold up better for long-term relationships and/or marriage

#6] They just look smarter and more sophisticated. 

While superior intelligence has no basis in truth, skinny women just look smarter.

They certainly understand affluent older men.

Of course, the same applies to prostitutes.

Jon Stewart on “Relevance Waning”

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http://www.etonline.com/awards/emmys/172325_jon_stewart_makes_promise_final_daily_show_emmy_speech/

“To everybody on television, I just want to tell you, cling to it as long as you can,” Stewart advised onstage. “Like death, like in the Titanic. Cling to it!”

Stewart admitted that his time away from TV hasn’t been easy.

“I’ve been off of television for six weeks, seven weeks, whatever it is, this is the first applause I’ve heard. It is a barren wasteland out there,” Stewart deadpanned.

~~~

I write a lot about “relevance” in the context of older men, and how the lack of it is akin to surgical castration.

Nobody – and I mean, NOBODY! – I gives that up without a fight.

When it’s gone, the fallout is always in the news:

Retired athlete now a drug addict; baron of business blows his brains out when risk trumps reward; once-famous actor fades into oblivion under a street lamp in the dead of night with a needle in his arm.

What keeps successful men alive is R E L E V A N C E.

Donald Trump once stated, “…there is nothing more voracious than this man’s hunger for wealth, fame and power,” and after being exposed to many such men in my life, the statement couldn’t be more true.

With this in mind, Stewart isn’t going anywhere.

He misses the applause, the notoriety, the power in a way similar to addicts when on the precipice of withdrawal.

It’s intoxicating.

Ask any retired rock musician what he misses most and the first sentence out of his mouth is “I miss my fans.”

I have a friend who is in various businesses, but the one he loves most is music.

When he’s on stage, he is someone else – infused with life, happy.

When it’s over, he goes back to the other guy, the one who’s a bit resigned, frustrated, bittersweet, sensitive, mildly depressed.

Once you’re on stage there’s no where else to go, particularly when you’re Stewart’s age with decades ahead of you … to do what? Fish?

There are men who’ve made fortunes many times over and are happy to live in relative obscurity with their riches and anonymity.

In fact, many claim to prefer this to fame of any kind.

But the vast majority of them still need some place to hang a shingle, whether it’s starting a charitable foundation, writing books, lecturing, or buying gold-diggers.

Without purpose, we’re nothing more than a memory with a large bank account, which is never big enough to fill in all the empty spaces.

Nothing fills the void when you feel like you no longer matter, even when you do to everyone, but yourself.

No wonder famous rock musicians continue to tour long after the money’s made, – and talk show hosts go on set, night after night, to the sound of their bands, famous guests and high Arbitron ratings.

The moment they walk away, they fade from relevance and time does what it always does.

As an older man who has done a lot with his life, I can personally attest to the fact that people like me don’t lie down for long because an idle life is, indeed, a “barren wasteland.”

We all need a purpose, and for Jon, it’s DEFINITELY another show.