The “Plankton” Generation – Revisited


As most people know by now, there’s a phrase coined for 45-plus women on the dating scene – the Plankton Generation.

It refers to women who are barely visible, and are “hanging at the bottom of the food chain” when it comes to attracting a mate.

It’s a derisive term, frankly, and one I’m not crazy about using.

But like most things in life aging-related, there’s no nice way of putting it.

Having said this, there are upsides depending on how you define “attracting a mate.”

I’ll explore those here…


It has been my experience that while older women find it difficult to find mates who fit their preferred profiles, they are better adapted to accepting – and making the very best of – the realities of aging.

According to Dr. Susan Nolen-Hoeksema, a noted Yale professor of psychology women’s lives get better with age, not worse. Rates of depression, anxiety, and suicide in women go down, not up, as women grow older, and she contributes that to the natural strengths women possess — coping skills, empathy, ability to listen, patience — which help them to tackle new problems and situations that arise as they age. It also gives them the courage to pursue new paths.

Men, on the other hand, have tremendous difficulty accepting aging.

First, they have a tendency not to maintain close friendships with other men, nor do the friendships they do have involve any meaningful degree of emotional intimacy and support.

Women, on the other hand, cherish and nurture their friendships with other women which helps them navigate life’s many stages.

“Contrary to women, men do not celebrate older age as a time of joy, love, and fulfillment for all they have worked for and grown to be over their lifetimes,” as Dr. Nolen-Hoeksema states.

Note: Among the older adults, who were facing the adversities that come with aging, the men showed less inclination to use these important coping skills compared to the women. In other words, older women were more likely than older men to tap their mental, emotional, and relational strengths to deal with adversity, which in turn left them less vulnerable to depression and anxiety in the face of difficulty.

Contrary to popular opinion, women over 50 tend to find their confidence and increased levels of satisfaction from within… not from without.

Even in the face of our cultural obsession with youth and beauty, older women place a greater emphasis and pride on their own maturity, experience and wisdom.

But, make no mistake: “women over 50 think they’re looking pretty good, too:” according to Dr. Nolen-Hoeksema’s study, women’s body images actually become more positive as they move from their 20s, 30s and 40s, into midlife.

While many men consider this deluded thinking, it works in women’s favor given their level of self-acceptance.

Put another way, while women may not get their immediate needs met, they more than make up for it through friendships and outside interests.

A few of the websites and blogs that are especially effective at reflecting the interests and concerns of women over 50 include:

 The Art of Aging

 Aging Abundantly

 Fab After 50

 The National Association of Baby Boomer Women (NABBW)

 The Huffington Post/Aging

 Fab Over Fifty

 ThirdAge

 wowOwow (Women on the Web)

 StyleSubstanceSoul

 MarryingGeorgeClooney

 DailyPlateofCrazy

Good luck finding this many for men.

Writer Barbara Hannah Grufferman asked her friends on Facebook, Are women better at aging than men? and here’s what a few of them had to say (reprinted with their permission):

Barbara Briggs Ward: I think the tide has turned. Women are more in charge of their aging. They are no longer giving in to it. They run; walk; try new careers; eat well; find new loves. Age no longer means slowing down and retreating. Age does not define a woman-for better or worse. It only opens new doors for them. And I think all of this has given women an edge over the men who are used to doors always being open.

Denise Taylor Tremaine: You don’t ever hear, or rarely, of women going through a mid-life crisis… we handle everything with grace.

Kim Okerson: I agree that the social pressure on women is far greater, but it is up to each of us to have the grace and dignity to accept that our age is state of mind.

Connie Katon Wingo: The emotional impact of aging is difficult for men, I’d say. In their youth, they were able to have the perception of controlling their environment. Their identities as men were so often tied to their sexual perception and themselves. Their sex drive slows down, and for a great deal of men their “manhood,” is tied into their perception of their sexuality. Also, as men begin to age in the workforce, their roles begin to change and coping with the feeling of obsoleteness is frightening, possibly causing men to feel more insecure about aging.

Melody George: I dont think one gender has it over another on aging. I think with men and women it is equally daunting or exciting depending on the person.

Whatever your thoughts are on this… here’s the fundamental truth: the more we stick together, the happier we will be.

The unfortunate fact is that sticking together is something men simply don’t do well.


As for the coping skills that older men do happen to have at their disposal, please note the following:

1] The ability to purchase and/or attract youth and beauty with money and power.

2] The distraction from existential pain using bigger homes, Aspen vacations and sports cars as leverage.

3] Hunting and fishing trips that get them out of the house and into the arms of escorts. 

4] Online porn.

5] Routine testosterone therapy and plastic surgery.

Normal, well-adjusted older men have age-appropriate wives, children and grandchildren, for God’s sake.

They have vacation homes where everyone comes together at holidays and embraces all that life has given them.

They aren’t consumed with death and irrelevance – or both.

Their families are their relevance.

I know this is lost on most of you who read this blog, but these people do exist.

Of course, they’d bore you to death long before loneliness or depression took you down.

What “Normal” Looks Like for Rich, Big City Boomers

2BFCBF8D00000578-3223381-image-a-216_1441458160046Buzz Bissinger, 60 with Caitlyn Jenner, 65 

I thought this picture was interesting, so I decided to share it with you.

I have nothing more to say…other than the fact that enough money and success have a way of opening doors to behavior that might otherwise remain hidden behind pleated khakis and anonymous Internet hook-ups. 




Are Scalpels, Silicone and Sex Parties a Necessity for “Good Marriage?”


Louise Van Der Velde, 44, actively encourages her relationship therapy clients – mostly in their 40’s and 50’s – to turn to the scalpel and silicone to keep their husbands from cheating.

Ms. Van Der Velde also hosts some of London’s most exclusive sex parties, which she claims also save marriages…as if the silicone wasn’t enough.

As if this wasn’t enough, here’s a beat down on Courtney Cox for undergoing cosmetic enhancements that ms. Van Der Velde says is necessary for older women to maintain their appeal.

Apparently, once women enter their 40’s, they have to begin an aggressive plastic surgery regimen, workout 3 hours a day, and then attend sex parties in the evenings [with their husbands] if they want to keep their marriages in tact…


Comments on the first link:

As an older man who runs in circles where 40-year-old women look 25 [for reasons that have little to do with genetics and everything to do with money], I can assure you that all of them know the stakes for non-compliance. If they aren’t exemplary, they’re traded.

Why is this?


Wherever they go, whatever they do, they see other successful men in th company of beautiful young women. It’s often referred to as “living life to the fullest,” to which they feel entitled.

For older women who use the same phraseology on dating profiles, it means I expect to be taken to Monaco on your dime.

Most of them are smoking hot for a reason. the rest are deluded and deleted.

Not long ago I attended a cocktail party/fundraiser hosted by a wealthy couple I don’t know.

When I was introduced to the man’s wife, i assumed she was 20 years younger than she was. Her skin was flawless, her body taut and perfectly proportioned and her teeth the stuff of cosmetic dental ads on TV.

How could a 48-year-old woman possibly look like this?

Money and the complete absence of stress.

In other words, she set herself up for a certain lifestyle in exchange for maintaining a specific physical aesthetic.

A small price to pay, indeed.

One look at her lifestyle, including framed photos of she and her husband at their Aspen “compound” was all most people need to see.

Comments on the second link:

People get bored, even with older women who manage to look half their age, and sometimes, especially.

The reason for this is that women who are willing to do pretty anything for money are also perceived to be morally and ethically malleable.

If lifestyle is the sole focus of one’s existence, then sex is just another lateral move in an otherwise relative universe.

Put another way, if men expect women to be beautiful at their expense, they also expect them to be sexual at their expense.

Thus, the sex parties attended by attractive and very affluent couples who deserve to “live life to its fullest.”

Why in Hell would anyone want to have sex with the same woman all the time? It’s ridiculous, right?

So now they have sex with ten times that number and it improves their marriage – marriage [again] being relative.

The women are willing to do what’s necessary, while the men do what they feel entitled to with women who are little more than objects, anyway.

No wonder they order them around like slaves.

When women have the money, they order young men around like slaves. Money doesn’t care. It’s an equal opportunity destroyer in this context.

Comments on the third link:

Courtney Cox has been through hell and back.

This aside, celebrities have it the toughest because people are always comparing them today with photographs taken 30 years ago and then wondering what happened?

Age happened.

I know how difficult this is to grasp, but as we age, celebrities age as well.

Courtney Cox in a vacuum looks great.

But none of us look great next to our college graduation pics.


Soon Everyone Will Have Steroids with Their Morning Coffee


#Dailymail ran an article a couple of years ago that stated “up to 20% of Hollywood’s leading men use PED’s [performance enhancing drugs].

Check it out for yourself:

But as everyone who works out regularly knows, the number is more like 90%, with the remaining 10% losing out to actors with “better hairlines,” which would be irrelevant had they taken the damn drugs.

Articles and website abound touting the merits of “hard work and diet” in achieving a preternatural physique.

“Yes, even you Mr. 60-year-old can look better than you did back in college with the right lifestyle choices!”

Total bullshit.

I guess no one bothered to mention the fact that eternal and youth aren’t synonymous under any circumstances.

However, if a man wants to look like the two guys in the above photograph who are well over 60 [source: Facebook’s “fitmenover50” page], steroids are the only way to achieve it.

I know you don’t want to hear this.

I also know you resent having to use facial fillers, take 300 vitamins every morning to supplement whatever time is stealing in your sleep, and avoiding anything that tastes good.

This is life in the absence of steroids.

You want a perfect physique?

You want to have a slice of pizza from time to time?

You want to train at half the intensity, half the time?

You have to take the drugs!

If not, join the mortal brigade and feel good about the fact that it’s all you.

But you won’t find yourself landing on these pages…

See, in order to get press, you have to be extraordinary.

But in the the context of fitness, extraordinary isn’t enough unless you look extraordinary, which no one who undergoes regular drug tests can achieve.

Am I getting through here?

All these self-righteous pricks who tell you they have all the dense muscle and low bodyfat by the grace of god are completely full of shit – or steroids, as the case may be.

Thick, sculpted muscle fiber combined with extremely low bodyfat on a “fit over 50” man is the very definition of S T E R O I D S.

Hell, it’s tough for a 25-year-old guy to build that kind of physique.

The reason for that is that IT’S NOT HUMANLY POSSIBLE WITHOUT DRUGS!



Like we’re idiots?

Since when did mankind evolve into super beings that don’t even remotely resemble anatomy charts?

The only “human anatomies” people reference these days can be found in department stores that sell Under Armour apparel, which uses flawlessly sculpted “giants” to sell their products.

But they are M A N N E Q U I N S!


And while some elite, and ridiculously genetically blessed, professional athletes look a lot like this, it doesn’t last long.

In the context of things human, it’s a way to sell clothing, websites…press, in general.

As we’ve all come to learn, reality is a buzzkill.

So we’ve replaced it with something more interesting – no matter what the side-effects, both physically and psychologically.

But hey, ya’ only live once, so why not?

Better to burn out than fade away.

Note: Lest you think that men are the sole users of steroids, check this out:

For those of you who are interested, the following article highlights the most popular steroids among older men:

On a final note, there’s the Anderson Cooper story, which has caught fire like everything else that involves cheating fate:

But as one commenter stated: “At 65+ you’re looking at balancing the improved quality of life with HGH vs a longer life with less quality.”

This is becoming a mantra that pretty much says it all.

Throw the bones.

“Aging Gracefully” is a Contradiction in Terms


How does she do it?

No one ages gracefully.

Just compare a well “maintained” woman of 60 with that of a dime store cashier of the same age, and it appears to be two entirely different species.

SF Chronicle columnist Rob Morse, refers to what it takes to win the battle of aging as “ritual mutilation of the wealthy.”

But regardless what he and other social critics have to say about the sad state of today’s supposedly enlightened women, no one in their right mind is going to fall apart in front of their friends if they want repeat invitations to cocktail parties and galas.

It’s kind of like not owning the right shoes and handbags, for God’s sake.

Of course, unlike like shoes and handbags, the old mantra “you can never have too many” doesn’t work as well on the operating table.

Profile of an Aging Narcissist

267F78B400000578-2987928-image-a-14_1425989387429Socialite Fraudster Edward Davenport [Google him]

When you’re young and beautiful, the world can kiss your ass.

You have nothing to prove that isn’t already obvious, which is plenty enough.

But as you get older and your sense of self-worth [as a man] is tied largely to your lifelong accomplishments [including the ones in your own head], the prospect of fading “relevance” becomes terrifying.

Now what?

This juncture marks the onset of what I refer to as the narcissists crucible, “a place of occasion or test of severe trial” where anything can, and usually will manifest in order to keep the boat from sinking like a jackhammer.

Note: The following is fictional and does not depict any actual person or event. It just seems like it does.

My name is Aristotle “Ari” Lazarov of Monaco, and I am a clinical narcissist. My 5th wife, Christina, is my enabler. Together we have 12 children.

Note: What I narcissists would admit so I wouldn’t have to run an intervention on their delusions.

I have a wonderful relationship with all my ex-wives because it behooves social climbers to keep their mouths shut.

Needless to say, they have nothing to stand on without party invitations, and therefore, everything to lose.

Note:  He should know. 

I am an extraordinarily good-looking man in spite of my age [which changes every 5 minutes, or just stays where it is for years at a time].

Note: Narcissists never fail to compliment themselves.

I dine at the right restaurants, drive the right cars, belong to the right clubs, know the right people, and wear acceptable designer apparel recognized by people who know and appreciate the finer things in life.

Note: He never wears anything that people who host photo-op-worthy cocktail parties and fundraisers might find distasteful, since party invitations are the lifeblood of his existence.

I stay in top physical condition through regular workouts with my personal trainer. I also maintain healthy eating habits, and take herbal testosterone that replenishes everything stolen by age, about which I remain in denial. 

Note: It’s a simple equation, really.

I have a home in Houston, an apartment in NYC, and a family compound outside Paris.

Note: Doesn’t everyone?

The other specifics of my life are up to you and your imagination. If I’ve been successful, you’ll imagine big.

Note: The narcissist stays light on the details and heavy on innuendo to keep the fantasies alive long after death, which is just as important as life in most cases. 


My name is Christina Lazarov, wife to my handsome and successful husband, Aristotle.

Note: I’m an enabler, remember?

Whatever my last name used to be is irrelevant because my life back then was irrelevant […not that it doesn’t haunt me in the middle of the night when I remember feeling something rather than nothing at all]. 

Note: This is something she should have broached in therapy, but because therapists lean in the direction of healing, she found a Pilates instructor.

Now my world is glamorous [pretentious], transcendent [privileged], and blissful [spaced-out], as everyone who’s anyone knows.

Note: Reflection [aka external affirmation] is heroin to any Stepford Wife with a working knowledge of the Devil’s Crossroads.


1] Aging narcissist-socialites attend parties for the photo ops, not for the charities themselves.

In fact, many of them don’t even know the charities they’re attending, given the number of stops one must make on a particular night, particularly during cultural season.

“Oh is this the Opera gala? Of course it is!”

2] Old money doesn’t want the publicity.

New money can’t live without it.

Note the outrageously expensive and pretentious automobiles cars lined up in perfect formation in front of gold digging establishments.

Money is thrown around like party favors. Think of it as a carbon credit for people who don’t know better.

3] The aging narcissist sits on the fence between old and new, driving cars that are expensive, but not pretentious.

Wearing clothing that is stylish, but not trendy and/and garish.

And generally behaving in a manner reflective of sophistication and cultural maturity, in spits of the fact that it’s a ruse.

In this sense, they’re the lowest of the low because no one has any idea who they really are, including themselves.

I could go on.

We’re Traveling Through Another Dimension, a Dimension Not Only of Sight and Sound But of Mind: Meet “Caitlyn”


Bruce Jenner [65] as “Caitlyn”

First of all, I don’t care what Bruce Jenner, or, for that matter, anyone else does with their body.

Some people like tattoos, others pierce their genitals.

There are women [and men] who spend the lion’s share of their time in the company of plastic surgeons. Some say it improves their chances of scoring an acting job on Law and Order.

Others undergo procedures they think will attract the attention of rich, powerful men with penchants for younger women, in spite of the fact that most of them are in their middle 40’s.

Enter Bruce Jenner, a one-time Olympic gold medalist, and now a regular on the reality television series, Keeping Up With the Kardashians.

I remember him back in their 80’s as the Wheaties guy.

He was all about being a fit, healthy man. All man.

But as we all come to know, what we see in life is rarely what’s behind the veil.

There are no simple set of right angels, balanced and aligned.

Jenner claimed he was never comfortable with who he was, that he never felt comfortable in the body of a man.

So like everyone else I know, he did something about it – mostly because he could afford to do something about it – and then decided to make it a crusade for the transgendered community.


He’s both woman and celebrated advocate.

It kind of reminds me of Madonna, a woman in the throes of a very public crash-and-burn tied directly to her delusions of pop relevance.

They’re both shell’s of their former selves, but at this stage of the game, neither one of them are going out without a fight.

Whether it’s heavily Photoshopped press images, or scripted interviews, “relevance” will not be denied.

This does make for a compelling study in abnormal human psychology. It’s a textbook example of just how far a person is willing to go to satisfy self.

I certainly don’t criticize Jenner for tackling a debilitating psychiatric dilemma.

But I do question his decision as a parent to drag his daughters through what should have been a private family matter, accolades from the transgendered community notwithstanding.

Then again, one could also argue that The Kardashians made their fortune on public disclosure, and Jenner’s transformation is just another angle in a never-ending story.

For me, the last thing in the world I would want to do is become a woman at age 65.

Hell, most women I know begin to feel invisible by age 40.

While Men Fight Their Way Up the Corporate Ladder, Many Women in Houston Fight Their Way Up the Social Ladder [usually fist-to-cuff]

NEW YORK, NY - MAY 14:  Comes With Baggage Founder Lori Levine shows off her one-of-a-kind orange HermËs Birkin at the Comes With Baggage Fashion Editor Preview on May 14, 2013 in New York City.  (Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for Comes With Baggage)

HermËs Birkin bag

Wednesday Martin, author of Primates of Park Avenue, she found herself, she says, “going native.” She wanted to belong among the Upper East Side mommies who hired stylists and makeup artists for school drop-off and pickup, who got preventive Botox every three months, who perfected the flawless facade.

~ ~ ~

In many ways, this is the female version of my new book, Urban Dystrophy, now available on #Amazon.

Again, money is the buy-in, followed by a tightly-scripted narrative to which all aspirants must adhere – to the letter.

Think of it as high school all over again, but without the food fights.

Men know all about this.

In exchange for a residence at “900 Park Avenue,” women stand at the Devil’s Crossroads and relinquish their souls for a table at the right restaurant where people eat each other.

The ones who survive have the most checks on the list of must-haves.

Age comes to mind.

To wit, the author  refuses to reveal her age.

All we know is “I’m in my 40’s.” 

The reason for this is academic:

Not only are women expected to perform well under the scrutiny of white hot halogen, but because youth and beauty are expected to be indelible commodities, the farther away one drifts, the more perilous the journey.

No wonder Botox runs like rivers on the Upper East Side.

Mothers then pass these values on to their children, who attend the right schools, go on the right play dates, have the right tutors, and generally, explore all that “intensive mothering” can – and damn well better – provide.

People say celebrities are so different from everyone else, but when it gets down to it, money is what splits the herd.

Why Men Act Strangely at Middle Age…and Beyond?

bruce jenner 1979 ap

Bruce Jenner, 1976 Summer Olympics, Montreal.

bruce-jenner-gender-surgeryBruce Jenner at age 65, and transitioning into a woman.

Bruce Jenner’s interview with Diane Sawyer, 2015.


Eventually, we all reach a point in life when we start running the actuarial tables, and realize that less days are ahead than behind.

We’ve done it all; been successful, respected, loved and experienced life in all its glory more times than we can count.

Now what?

Here we are at the precipice of twilight, with money in the bank, time on our hands to be the person we always wanted to be, and a stopwatch on the horizon the size of the sun. 

It has a way of pressuring us in ways that you have to experience yourself to appreciate.

Some men continue doing what they’ve always done: making movies, transplanting hearts, writing books.

Others explore hobbies they never had time to pursue during the career years, like sailing, skydiving or marathon running.

Among them there are those who lived their lives in ways they considered disingenuous, in spite of all the professional accolades, familial surroundings and beers with the guys during football season.

Men, in general, are not comfortable discussing anything but radiator leaks and headaches, so visualize an aging, one-time Olympic gold-medalist and reality television star with an gender identity issue and Bruce Jenner begins to make sense.

The carnage has to find its way out somehow, and since he’s not getting any younger, and can afford the procedures and security details, why not?

If I were a gay man trapped in a heterosexual relationship, this would be a good time to get a divorce.

If I felt trapped in corporate conformity for the sake of the almighty dollar, I might find myself ditching it all for a job as a trail guide in Telluride, or bar owner down in Acapulco.

Again, if not now, when?

Older men of ambition and drive are still fueled by the same forces that paved the way for their success. These forces don’t die. They do, however, morph, often resurrected when time starts running out and fantasies are still doable.

Jenner’s transition may or may not be a symptom of some severe psychiatric disorder, but he still manages to function in society, pay his taxes, do a reality television show…and show up on time for an interview with Diane Sawyer.

Insanity is not the first thing that comes to mind. Curious, is.

The extreme juxtaposition of masculine Olympian with transgendered person.

But contextually, it’s no different than a “traditional family man” and closeted homicidal sociopath, so there’s that.

And besides, most older men I know are not the people they present.

Some are men of the cloth, and child molesters; others happily married to one woman and happily screwing another. You just never know.

At least Jenner was open about it.

Whatever else he may or may not have done in his life is his business.

You may not like it. You may find him repugnant, deluded, lost. But it’s not your life. Thankfully, you don’t stand in his shoes.

As for it’s impact on society, it’s all about parenting.

Without it, there is no society to speak of as evidenced by children running the streets like revenants from hell.

Denial’s a Bitch

madonna-624-1375114464Where she started…


What’s left…

After belting out her classic song of female empowerment “Express Yourself,” at Coachella, the 56-year-old pop legend, Madonna, pulled the 28-year-old singer, Drake, back in his chair to plant a heavy kiss on his lips.

Then all hell broke loose.


Naivete in grownups is often charming; but when coupled with vanity it is indistinguishable from stupidity. Eric Hoffer


Madonna is closing in on 60 years old and a shadow of her former self, which I know is shocking to those of you who think she resembles the woman on the cover of her new CD.

If she were a writer or folk singer or politician or television actor or newscaster or cashier at WalMart she could go on and on and on. But sex symbol? Please.

And that gold dental grill!!! Seriously??? What drugs drive people this far off the ranch???

I guess it has everything to do with being at the top of the pop music world for decades only to feel pressured to pass the baton to the next generation.

If it were me, I’d do the same damn thing as long as I had no idea how ridiculous it made me look.

I’m sure no one let’s her in on this dirty little secret, though.

Why would they? Their careers rest on her perpetuity no matter how desperate she looks in the process.

But what propelled her to stardom is still part of who she is today. In this sense, she is stuck in the past, always looking for the next opportunity to resurrect herself, this time around with an undercurrent of indignant rage.

The bottom line is that she is no longer “herself” on the outside, which means that she has to redefine who she is on the inside.

At this writing, this does not appear to be happening.

Nonetheless, what she’s going through is not unique to women.

Men become the punchlines of jokes when they live the way they did 30 ago, refusing to acknowledge that 30 years have passed.

We all age. It sucks. It’s nature’s cruel joke. Call it what you will. But it’s a reality we all face no matter who we are.

Some fare better than others, mostly because they’re not Madonna.

They don’t have to fill stadiums, pander to fans, focus on trying to bend and shape perception of aging until people no longer see it.

In this sense Madonna as “Madonna” is her own worst nightmare.

If she wants to salvage her dignity and assure a resurrection of sorts, she should take her own advice and perform alone on a simple stage with an acoustic guitar.

No dancers, backup singers, pyrotechnics and god’s knows what the hell else.

Now that would be a concert worth seeing.


Who attends Madonna concerts?

1] Older women who relate to her midlife delusions.

2] Gay men who imagine Madonna loves them more than she loves herself.

3] No one else that I’m aware of.


Now Drake has said that, in so many words, he was delighted to have had the opportunity to be kissed by the queen, Madonna.

Yea right, dude.

Best to cover your ass.