Thursday, 19 November 2009
What's in it for the ToyBoy?
Of course it’s not hard to see why any young man might be more than happy to hook up with an older female celebrity. From Halle to Jen, to Cameron and even Madonna, the celebrity cougar has plenty to offer in terms of looks, cash and connections – but what about us lesser mortals? What is it that the toy boy sees in dating the average older woman?
Some mornings I’ll peek at Ad Man as he gets ready for work, cheerful as ever, plugging in his MP3 headphones, zipping up his hoodie and leaping onto his scooter, and I can’t help but feel a very, very lucky woman. Then I catch a glimpse of myself, pale faced, in a shabby dressing gown, handing out school bags and scrabbling to put packed lunches together and think, ‘ye gods, what on earth does he see in me?’
As far as I’m concerned, I’m definitely the one getting all the perks here. And I can see in the faces of my girlfriends that they, clearly, think the same. At a recent party in a club somewhere southwest of London, I sat in a velvet booth with some friends watching Ad Man as he gregariously scampered to and from the bar, buying everyone drinks, then hit the dance floor with enthusiasm – a lone stag surrounded by a bunch of excited women. Meanwhile the other, older, menfolk clutched their pints and kept their backs firmly against the walls. “A man who dances… you lucky thing, “ sighed a Yummy Mummy enviously while glaring at her husband who simply stared, glumly, into his Fosters. “I know," I smiled, trying not to look too smug, but then getting up to join Ad Man on the dance floor, just to emphasise the point.
In my more insecure moments though it does concern me that, one day, Ad Man will wake up and wonder what on earth he is doing hanging around with someone who listens to Radio 4 and usually prefers a nice cup of tea to a tequila slammer. It was beginning to play on my mind a bit so the other night I finally plucked up the courage to tackle the issue head on. Over dinner, and after a bottle or two of red, I asked him rather directly, why he would want to be with an older woman when there are clearly plenty of 20-somethings keen to step into my rather sensible brogues.
To my surprise (OK, and relief) he instantly came up with quite a convincing string of reasons which I feel I should share with you – if only to let some young men out there know what they’re missing, and maybe to reassure any other uncertain Cougars. So, for all of you doubters out there, here it is, from the mouth of a babe (well, a 33-year-old male)…. Why young men really do love the older woman:
We’re wiser OK we may have a few crows’ feet to show for it, but our extra years on the planet have also given us a sense of perspective and the experience to know not to sweat the small stuff. Toy Boy may still go dewy eyed over Britney in her school girl’s outfit, but he’d rather spend some quality time with someone who is not going to go into melt down at the smallest hiccup.
We’ve got more to talk about By the time a woman hits 40, she’s usually been to a few places, seen a few things, and realised that there’s more to life than what’s happening in X-Factor and the new handbags in TopShop (though that’s not to say that we don’t like those things too!) We’ve got somewhere in our careers, seen some ups and downs, and know that you need more than perfect hair and make-up to make an evening interesting. Twenty–three-year-old Megan Fox (below) may tick a lot of boxes for the Toy Boy, but her conversation certainly isn’t one of them.
We’re less self aware One of the best things about getting older is that you don’t mind laughing at yourself. We’ve learnt that life is too short to take yourself so seriously. So what if someone turns up at the same do in the same dress or you trip over your own feet as you make your grand entrance? While the 20-something ends up in the Ladies in tears, the 40-something is still having a giggle and glass of champagne.
It’s not all about ‘me’ Talking about yourself for too long is a big turn off for the Toy Boy, and so many 20-somethings are yet to emerge from their egocentric chrysalis. The joy of the forty-something is that she has developed the skill of asking people questions. More than that, she is genuinely interested in someone other than herself. Think, who would you rather have a chat with - Kate Winslet or Peaches Geldof?
We’re not slaves to fashion Most guys just don’t get what it is about Sex and the City’s Carrie – and much of that is to do with the clothes. While men want their date to look good, they’d far rather she was in a well-fitting pair of jeans and flashing a hint of cleavage, than a high-waisted puffball and shoes she can’t walk in. The 40-something scores hands down here because she’s learnt to edit what hits the catwalk and only adopt the more wearable pieces that actually suit her body shape. Natalie Cassidy, take note!
We’re confident Age definitely brings an added confidence. The cougar knows what she wants and what she doesn’t want, and she knows how to sweat her assets. Such confidence is sexy – men of all ages are unanimous in that – and that extends to the bedroom too. OK, so the 40-year-old’s body may have the odd flaw, but at least she’s happy to keep the light on and show off the bits that count – and that keeps a toy boy very happy.