Being a gentleman ‘of a certain age’ used to be the kiss of death for the self-esteem of men…All that awaited you was walking about in trousers with a very low crutch, old zip cardigans, beige ‘Windcheater’ jackets, and false teeth that would move up and down despite the best efforts of the owner to tame them.
Now it is a bit different. Silver hair is no barrier to being seen as ‘attractive’, Sean Connery, Harrison Ford, George Clooney… the list goes on. In my own small way, I too have found this out. I always went to teach at school wearing a suit or jacket and tie, and my fixation with fashion became a legend among the school community! As a result, I am the proud owner of a vast array of cufflinks and ties bought by grateful students. I never seemed to be treated like an ‘old man’, and it got me to wondering why things have changed so much.
Well first up, having your own teeth is more common now! Maybe not all of them, but enough to make a difference. When I was a kid people had ALL their teeth out to save money of dental bills, money that was spent on feeding the family. Now owning a good set of ‘railings’ (as we say in London) is commonplace.
There are magazines dedicated to man and fashion…not just the skinny, “more fat on a chip" models, but real men with ‘road tested’ bodies ? Of course there are thousands more women’s magazines, but this is a step forward…. So take a bow ‘GQ’ Magazine for example.
Having your own hair (on the head preferably) is also no block for an older man to appear “good-looking”. Where once wigs or ('Syrups'…Syrup of Figs = Wigs) could be seen clinging for dear life on a prematurely bald pate, the shiny bald head or ‘Chrome Dome’ is sometimes seen as being sexy (an idea I suspect was put about by bald men).
Now I have retired (thanks Serenity xx) I am able to collect guitars, and even here there is a recent focus on new guitars made to look beaten up, scratched and dented so they have a ‘worn in’ look. I guess this is a further example of age making things more interesting? Like a fine guitar I have been played a lot, I carry a few scars and ‘dings’ on my paintwork, the colour might have faded a bit, but I can still make a fantastic sound when plugged into a quality amp!! ?
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