So, yesterday, I e-mailed a bunch of my male friends to ask them what they thought of my fears. Was I right to think that men would never be interested in having me — a 30-something woman who might not be particularly attractive — approach them randomly when there's a world full of hot 20-somethings pretty enough to be reality TV-show stars floating around New York at all times whom those dudes could be talking to instead?
No! As it turns out, I was wrong! My stupendous friends straightened me out, and told me why they think 30-somethings are sexy — and often, for them, even more appealing than younger women. (Now, for all you 20-somethings who are reading, I hope you know this is not meant to alienate you; the assumption here is that you've got the natural beauty of youth on your side. And I actually think my guy friends have a few insights that apply generally to what's sexy, that would be interesting for women of all ages.)
34-year-old Raoul Djukanovic* says: Why would I talk to someone over 30? Well, because I'm over 30. But I'd talk to anyone who talked to me with spirit, young or old. If someone's being open and sincere, that's attractive.
Johnny Gilbane, 36: I'm all about women over 30 — because they have realized, like I have, that relationships aren't perfect. I think a lot of younger women are constantly attempting to model their lives and relationships after some unattainable ideal. So I'll take a 35-year-old, Harper's-reading, well-dressing, book-toting, glasses-wearing woman any day of the week. And twice on Sunday. So long as she's retained the one trait that 26-year-old women have in spades: reckless abandon about being in love.
Christopher Gambrills, 26: I've been attracted to older women in the past when they made no apologies about their age. They didn't try to look or act any younger than they felt. There's something graceful about that — about being at ease with yourself and the world. And crow's-feet can be sexy. Looking like you've lived and know something about the world is sexy, at least to me.
Mike Parkwood, 34: Far more women in their 30s know what they're talking about when they say they're looking for serious relationships. Older women are less likely to have idiosyncratic rules about what men should and shouldn't do. They know that relationships involve compromises, silent and spoken negotiations, mutual respect, and equal power. Younger women don't understand that stuff, in general, as well as women in their later 20s and 30s do.
There you have it. Straight from completely sincere men who live all over the world — Raoul's a researcher in London; it's Chicago for lawyer Johnny (who's newly single if you want his number); Christopher, a poet who's first book will be out in 2010, currently resides in Minneapolis; and Mike, a professor, lives right near me, here in Brooklyn, although he's currently off in Australia doing some research.
One of the bazillion things I like about talking to my guy friends, and hearing their take on things, is that it reminds me that — despite the bad rap they sometimes get when we've had a few too many bad dates or non-starter "relationships" in a row — boys are just like us! Or, at least, that they're not all a bunch of commitment-phobic sex maniacs. They are — at least a good number of them are — sweet, caring, affectionate humans who crave real connection and lasting, meaningful relationships. They can also often be pretty damn cute.
All right. I have a little story to tell you from last night — when I stopped by the awesome opening of the Sophie Calle art exhibit in Chelsea — but I'll have to do that on Monday. I'll leave you with an essay written by a friend of mine which ran yesterday, all about money+a relationship — and the cheapskate she was dating. Hope you like it.
Enjoy the weekend! xxx.
*All the names here are porn-star names.