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Pump up the plastic?

Annali Roux

(For Woody Allen, Nicolas Cage and their 20-year-old playmates)

Are we all parading in a circle? Is the world really spinning? Or is it just me? I've come to the sobering conclusion that the third world war is busy playing itself out in office bathrooms and upper-class snooty-tooty suburban tea parties from the girdle. If you are a single woman over 35, tough luck! You might as well tattoo "past sell by date" on your forehead - or so it seems. At the other end of the scale, the world is the oyster of the 35-year-old man. Makes you think, doesn't it?

But who is to blame for this self-perpetuating circle of mutton trying to pass as lamb? Is it merely our warped media-induced obsession with the young and beautiful, or is it our prehistoric urge for "survival of the fittest"? You see them everywhere. The dolled-up, over-lip-lined Lativahs at Woolworths, those nappy Karakuls sporting their Jackie O's sneaking out of Dr Who's Sandton practice.

I'll tell you a little something for nothing, while we're chatting so informally. The secret that nobody ever talks about is that, God forbid, you have to admit you're not 21 anymore.

Every woman has been there, including me. Staring at the bathroom mirror at those faint lines around the eyes contemplating "it", the big B. We live in an age where thousands of women try to parade as teenagers in the hope of competing with an ever-growing number of Candies and Bambis moving in for the kill. There's a whole generation of women who are simply being overlooked by their male counterparts because it has become so easy for an older man to pull a pretty young thing nowadays. The question to ask is: What will happen when Bambi cannot make her blue jeans talk anymore? That time will surely come. Will Mr Man then move on the next beautiful young thing in the bottomless pit of youth at his obvious disposal, swapping in the 42-year old edition for two 21-year-old models? Living with that kind of stress will surely make the younglings age more quickly anyway. God's speed, girls.

Maybe it's all part of a global phenomenon, a master plan in the epic revenge of the airheads. Perhaps younger women have devised a cunning plan to take over the world. Keep up. They will steal every nice man who shows them any interest (undoubtedly it will be a very nice, older midlife-muddled man). Then after conquering the bank account with their cute bottoms and baby-doll eyes they'll band together, start buying up trendy malls and begin their own federation of bimbo-shopaholics! The world will then belong to them! They have already roped in Gwen Stefani and her quirky L.A.M.B. clothing label. Just kidding.

What I'm struggling to get my head around is at what equivocal moment the cool dial turned all the way down to young. Women over 30 are sticking by half-assed men because they cannot bare the thought of trying to meet a guy of their age, at their age! "I'm too old, I'm not 21 anymore, I guess I'm doomed to foot warmers and feeding stray cats." Has competition become so fierce? When did Dr 90201 become the god-like referee of the female gender? When did it become necessary for women to shell out major ching to compete with every Candy and Bambi in society?

Ready. Set.

t's because our senses are bombarded with adverts for miracle cream showcasing before and after paint-brushed 30-somethings looking positively radiant and effortlessly happy, claiming Ö to be 40! Oh please. Come on women - take back your sex appeal, your unique style, and your sense of humour. Hell, do it "Hollywood" style. Why not rope in a younger man? Ivana Trump has nailed it perfectly. Experience is everything. Two can play this game.

Let's say it together. No shame there, girlfriends.



LitNet: 02 August 2005

boontoe / to the top


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