Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Life At Fifty

Read this brief yet telling comment in a local gay forum that left me feeling unaccountably sad for all my fellow brothers out there.

'I fear getting old, and secretly wish I will die peacefully in my sleep before I reach 50'.

And that from an artless kid with barely two decades under his flawless Gucci belt. Seriously shades of Veronika Decides to Die.

You'd expect a boy like that to have the world at his feet rather than hoping death arrives by fifty. Though it wouldn't be the first time I've heard a similar comment full of melancholy.

Hard to blame the callow clubkids from feeling appalled when every gay man out there ticks under 40 in the list of their dating requirements. No doubt it seems like getting older is the fearsome boggart creeping around in every homosexual's hidden closet - which sufficiently explains the endless gym days, the latest skincare products, the neverending fad diets in their daily routine, all in a tragically futile bid to keep age at bay.

Narcissistic Dorian Grays forever in search of that elusive painting. Even apparently successful gay men fall prey to such gloomy spectres instead of facing the next chapter of their lives with fabulous aplomb, truckloads of SKII and an endless array of tight T-shirts.

Yes, I do know that our gay community is predominantly shallow, superficial and sadly youth-obsessed. Tragic fact of life but like our straight brethren, gay boys respond and react mostly to visual stimuli, namely the physical appeal of their potential sexual partners. In the capricious gay marriage market, youth and beauty rank high on the wanted list - but alas beauty fades with time. Doesn't take long for the chi-chi in-crowd with their low attention span to gravitate from the sadly forgotten stud fading under the limelight to the youthful ingenue flexing his sculpted biceps in the wings.

Yet I don't believe that life ends at fifty.

In fact I feel better about myself now than perhaps ten years back, and hope to improve upon that in the next decade. Smarter, wiser, calmer, certainly less prone to crazy impulses. So what if that comes along with an expanding gut, a sore back and the occasional stray white follicle.

Shit, am I old? I'd better toss out that damned mirror!

Perhaps that's because I have never really judged myself on the basis of my looks - which would be really tragic since I truly resemble a hideous bridge troll. However due to my patent unattractiveness, persistent wrinkles and lines creeping up on me doesn't actually hobble my sense of self. True, beauty fades but then again I never was much of a supermodel anyway. My self worth doesn't actually hinge on the cut of my nonexistent six-pack abs.

Life doesn't end at fifty. Retirement is something I look forward to actually. Hopefully with a beautifully appointed home, a healthy bank account, a loving partner and... perhaps a cadre of hunky pool boys ready to serve.


Vincent~ said...

*googled image of bridge troll*


lol, but seriously a really good post here =D although i cant really relate tat yet, it will b soon anyway.

Looks, hopefully when i am around 50, tat point of view will change =D

savante said...

But Vincent, surely you don't think of dying before the age of fifty, right?

Tempus said...

i'd probably become a monk by fifty haha.

rotiboy said...

Very true. I realised this since few years back, which is why I decided to find someone who is willing to settle down with me as early as I can, while I'm still not too old to be left with no physical attractiveness at all. I think most straight guys are much wiser than most of us in this. Most stop fooling around before 30s, acknowledge the fact that they can never marry their dream girls, settle down with a girl who is not their dream girl and get married.

savante said...

Why a monk, tempus! Planning to join a monastery then?

Ouch, rotiboy! Settle down with a girl who is not their dream girl?


♔ıǝɹɯɐı♔ said...

Now I feel extremely vain. :O

- a L E x - said...

I dun wanna die so early before 50 :O!!

Kayson said...

I haven't been here much, but god Paul although this was not spectacularly well written, cause you write so well and have written many articulately delicious(does that sound right?) posts before, this was surely.. somewhat of an epiphany when read. I learned something today. ;)