My last post concerning men and their ensuing aging process seems to have stirred up a veritable hornet’s nest of opinion … the like of which has left me scratching my head somewhat.
I still fail to see why advancing years are such an issue for anyone these days, irrespective of gender. Of course if my dear Mum was reading this over my shoulder right now she’d be pointing out that in her forties she felt great too, but that reaching seventy isn’t quite the same story.
The boys seem to be missing one vital fact here …. the girls like nothing more than men who have matured into learned, confident chaps, relaxed about their lot in life. Shall I tell you why that is? Because it means we don’t have to worry about propping them up and reassuring them at every twist and turn.
I had a very recent date with one man who on the face of it seemed to ooze confidence and gravitas; we’d had several conversations about life, children, values …. all deep searching stuff. He and I were very similar in many regards; we held a very similar political view (if you saw me raging over the Sunday papers, my glasses slipping down my nose and unkempt hair akimbo, you’d appreciate what a big deal that is… you wouldn’t want to cross that woman) and he had a knack of engaging me within a minute or two of a phone conversation. All was good.
As it turned out, Mr Bunched Up (stay with me, all will be made clear) had more issues swimming around in his head than the local therapy group. We were going out to eat …. he couldn’t eat garlic because he had an intolerance ….. We were going to a bar …. he doesn’t ever, ever drink as this doesn’t sit comfortably with his ultra-healthy lifestyle (daily visits to the gym) We discussed relationships and he declared it isn’t possible to have a relationship if you have children and are divorced ….. I wondered exactly what he thought he was going to get out of his dating site subscription.
So there we sat, him with his lime and soda and ham sandwich, me with my wine and deep fried something or other (OK, it was childish) and I realised I’d managed to net another forty something derelict shell of a post-divorce man (borne out of his barbed comment “I HAVE AN EX WIFE, YOU KNOW … HOW MUCH DO YOU THINK THEY COST?” when I had enquired if he had a sat-nav system)
Now Mr Bunched Up had let it slip very deliberately that I “wouldn’t be disappointed” if we progressed things to a more intimate level, given his frequent gym visits.
“When you remove my shirt you’ll see there isn’t an ounce of fat on me …”
OK. Fair enough. I can’t say I was totally disinterested in that comment, but let me tell you, after the whinging, whining “can’t do this”, “can’t do that” performance in the bar that night, I would thankfully have signed a celibacy pledge there and then if that was the best offering the opposite sex had to offer.
I have to admit I did find myself falling into that familiar role … “so tell me, why do you think can’t have a relationship with kids …??” …. “what exactly does garlic do to you …?” ….. “oh I agree, I think I should definitely give up alcohol..”
Why? I didn’t mean any of it. I was pandering to Mr Bunched Up’s little neuroses. The next morning I woke having squared the fact Debsyliciously that Mr Bunched Up and I were not going to sail off into any sunset anytime soon. I pandered now and I would never have stopped pandering. And of course, the lingering fact was there in the background that was the most damning of evidence …. he never showed any interest in wanting to know anything about me at any point in the evening.
Now, being a girl of the gender that coined the classic line “does my bum look big in this?” steeped in it’s nervous uncertainty, it made me wonder why all of a sudden I seemed to be surrounded by men who are unsure of themselves, restricted in their habits and obsessed with their self-image. Of course I applaud anyone who has a natural respect for their bodies, but for me “natural” does not involve fastening yourself into a straight-jacket lifestyle.
I’ve got to the point in life where I want to pat myself on the back for getting this far relatively unscathed. I’m not out of the woods of challenge yet by any stretch of the imagination, but I welcome each day, each glass of wine and I think it’s quite appalling that I find my total and utter lack of exercise regime so hilarious.
Seriously … I’m sniggering as I type. Laughing at my of lack of self-discipline and control ….That’s not good, is it?