Posts Tagged ‘age’

Fear of Old Ladies

Wednesday, August 21st, 2013

Top Of The Lake


It has taken several days to emerge from the spell cast by Top of the Lake. I miss the weird atmosphere and the intensity of the relationships.

Now that I’m back in my own world, I’m preoccupied by the creepiness of women who look like old ladies.

I know how wrong this is, believe me. My husband always encourages me to embrace growing old. I know it happens to everyone, you can’t stop time, blah blah blah. And yet it’s so creepy.

Look at Jane Campion and Holly Hunter, 59 and 55 years old, respectively. They are dynamic, vibrant woman and Holly’s hair isn’t really silver in real life. But still. The old ladiness bothers me.

On the other hand, I’d be mad at them if they tried to be sexpots with bursting faces like Madonna. I can’t find a way to be an old lady that doesn’t feel tragic or enraging.

What do you think of Jane and Holly? Is it the androgyny that’s bothering me? They project a ‘Fuck You if You Don’t Like it’ attitude, which I normally admire. Are they saying that they don’t care about being attractive, or are they attractive in a way I don’t get? Would they look better with dyed hair, or is it the length that brings to mind wrinkly old wizards?

I have a week left before I turn sixty. I am disgusted by how shallow I am, but still. I can’t handle it.

Older, No Wiser

Friday, September 2nd, 2011

I forgot to say that Sunday was my birthday. Now I am 58 and none the wiser. My husband took me to a huge botanica where I squealed with pleasure at the racks and racks of magical oils and candles. We thought it would be nice to get a picture of me with the big Santa  Muerta, but look! You can barely tell us apart.

In my imagination, I look more like this:

or even this:

Oh never mind.   I guess I can start cultivating an eccentric old lady look, although it seems like a lot of trouble. Furthermore, now that it’s been packaged and approved by Topshop, its appeal is kind of dubious.

What  brought  this on, do you think? Is it Tavi-related? Is it Daphne Guinness? Is it Little Edie Beale? Is it that blog about Advanced Style with all the wacky looking old ladies?

Whatever the reason for officially dictating a trend called Eccentric Lady, it is by definition less original and appealing. Fuck it.

I’m sticking with Geriatric Tomboy ,    but easing into Slob. Maybe it’s more like   Crypto-Hipster Slob  now that I have a big tattoo.

Let’s brace ourselves for an army of young girls wearing turbans, big sunglasses, ratty furs, granny dresses and hideous brooches. If they can loose the scary Jeffrey Campbell shoes, maybe it will be a blessing in disguise.

Cher: Mutton Dressed as Mutton

Wednesday, May 13th, 2009

A reader brought up the subject of Cher, and while I’d rather ignore her, the issue of how to age gracefully is never far from my mind.

Regarding Cher and her reprise of the see-through bodysuit, it was horrible and inappropriate the first time around (in 1992?) and it still is today. Who gives a shit if she wears it at 40, 60, or 80 years old? The woman wants to look stupid and embarrassing; She’s Cher! It’s her shtick.

The problem is, we don’t want her influencing other older women who might see this as a green light to Dress As Young as They Feel.   Let us not encourage the tragic notion that age doesn’t matter. When we see a woman who seems blind to her own folly, and I’m talking to you Madge, it’s just sad.

Vivienne Westwood has managed to carry her look into old age, in part because she’s simply a great-looking woman, and because she knows what suits her. Maybe having the hot younger husband helps as well.

But Betsey Johnson makes me feel depressed. She looks like she doesn’t get it. Is she being ironic by looking like she’s nuts, or is she sincere? Patricia Fields is scary looking, but I’m guessing she works hard at being that scary. Pam Hogg looks nuts too, and I’d still like to know how old she is. Her look seems to say, I’m a Rule Breaker, Go to Hell if You Can’t Dig Me.

Most of us, though, have to be willing to accommodate old age into our look. It’s not nice to look 18 from behind and and then give someone a heart attack when you turn around. Half the woman in L.A. are unaware of this simple rule of etiquette. I personally have asked several friends to let me know when I start committing this gaffe but I think they pity me too much to let me have it.

To tell you the truth, now that Patti Smith has dyed her graying hair, I am feeling a bit disoriented.

What is Patti’s message to me? If she’s just saying, Fuck it, Who Wants Gray Hair, then I’m on board. Women who let their hair go gray are so misguided. It’s just bad, and that’s that. They might as well go around screaming I NEED ESTROGEN! (Fine, I have screamed that at my family on a couple of occasions, but that’s because I could feel my estrogen plummeting. They didn’t even need me to tell them, apparently.)

Women whose style is always evolving will probably have the best chance of carrying off old age without evoking pity or shock. Me, I’m in for trouble. My style hasn’t changed, but old women in tight jeans tend to offend me. I’m thinking, oh god, Woodstock is over, lady.

And they’re probably thinking the same thing about me!

How Old is Old?

Wednesday, August 6th, 2008

Today I read a boring article by Gen X poster boy Douglas Coupland about growing old. He notes that we all have two ages: the age we really are and the age we are in our heads.

Later this month, Sister Wolf will be 55. If you are taken aback, think how I feel.   No one wants to be this age but, ahem, consider the alternative.

Being 55 means nothing much except that it isn’t considered a good thing by men who blabber on and on about women losing their appeal after 30. As if.   I am completely awesome, so I am happy to refute that line of thinking.

I have come to love my cute hospital bed and my beautiful red sheets, but all things must pass and the hospital equipment is being picked up on Friday.   I love cranking up my bed to read and I love knowing I can’t fall out. Oh well. Maybe I will end up buying a hospital bed for two….do they exist?!   I’m excited just thinking about it!

During my recovery, I bought this Mischen silk dress online, because it was drastically reduced and because it has zippers down the entire length of each side. The fact that I won’t ever wear it is hardly worth mentioning.   Bring on the Rapture! And the fucked-up looking hem in the photo isn’t like that in the real dress.

The age I am in my head is around 14.   My oldest son is 32, and people generally think I’m his sister or girlfriend when we hang out together, but they don’t realize that in my head, I’m still a defiant hippie girl, angry and insecure but much cooler than those awful straight people.

How old are the rest of you in your heads?