Do you work hard to stay in shape to look hot in your skinny jeans, and to project an “I Am Woman Hear Me Roar” image in a leather Harley motorcycle jacket? Are you the epitome of the hot ageless babe women envy and try to emulate?
If so, girlfriend, I have a few hot flashes for you.
Right now you may consider yourself “hot” and undoubtedly you are, but be aware that once you get to retirement age, through no fault of your own, your hotness will slowly dissipate and you will become “cute” and or “adorable” especially if you do, say, or believe something other than what’s expected of you “at your age.”
Once you become cute or adorable you are good for giggles. For example, if you are single and make it known you’d like to have a hot guy in your life, you are soooo cute. (Aren’t those cute old gals looking for romance a riot? That is so adorable.) Your cuteness marks you as an over the hill libidinous lizzie. If by a stroke of good fortune you already have a significant other (giggle giggle) and he’s significantly younger than you, OMG! That is really cute!
What’s super cute/adorable is if you are seen walking hand-in-hand with a lucky duck who obviously thinks you are hotter than a 10-alarm fire. That is so adorable and so doggone cute. Especially if you are wearing your skinny jeans and leather Harley motorcycle jacket (snicker, snicker).
If you have an outrageous sense of humor and considered “a cut up,” especially after you’ve had a glass of wine too many, arbiters of what’s hot and what’s not gossip and guffaw behind your back that you are such a loopy lush. But (giggle giggle) — you are such a cute hoot!
Got the picture?
Alas, there is something just as bad as becoming cute/adorable: It’s being “wonderful” for your age.
I can’t count the number of times I have been told, “You are wonderful for your age.” I admit to being “wonderful” but let me tell you this: my age has nothing to do with my wonderful-ness. And no, I am not cute or adorable; I am drop dead gorgeous in my skinny jeans and leather Harley jacket. (Never mind that I look fat in skinny jeans, but that’s another story.)
How does it happen that it’s okay to demean mature women with backhanded compliments that, even though well intended, are offensive? It happens for many reasons; the most obvious being entrenched cultural attitudes and behaviors. Just read some reviews of Betty White’s abominable “Off Their Rockers” TV show. Those who like the show rave about how cute the old pranksters are, and how wonderful they are for their age.
Regarding the “Off Their Rockers” debacle, Mary Lloyd has cogently pointed out, “No one would dream of making a series based on racist jokes or even “dumb blonde” or other sexist jokes. Why is this ageist garbage deemed acceptable?”
The ageist garbage is deemed acceptable because our base culture doesn’t care how objectionable it is, and not only ignorantly accepts it but praises it. Unfortunately, most older women timidly recoil from confronting it. There is no organized rebellion – yet. But wait – it’s coming!
Girlfriends! Hoist your protest signs and get ready to rumble!
Down with ageist disrespect!
Babies, not mature women, are “cute”;
Puppies, not grown women, are “adorable”;
Down with you-are-wonderful-for-your-age “compliments”!