I was supposed to be doing something else but that darned squirrel is back and making a shiny, distracting pest of itself. Hence I found myself a short time ago futzing around on the 'net, reading one of those celebrity gossip sites, and therein was a little vignette about actress Eliza Dushku ( mm-mmm ) and her ex-basketball beau Rick Foxx ( who, like Jamie, apparently has some difficulty spelling his last name ) who have been an item since last October. Anyway, Ms Dushku and Mr Foxx-with-two-exes have recently moved in together. So far, so not earth-shattering. What draws the attention to this relationship is the ages of those involved. She's 29. He's 41. Age gaps like this seem to be a thing which draws a big " So what?" reaction from some people, like myself, who tend to see age as a number and not necessarily representative of who or what is the person behind the number. Others, however, that ubiquitious 'they', will screw up their little faces until those almost fall off and start proclaiming all manner of ill-informed judgment.
" It's all about the sex!" they will cry in abject disgust.
Um ... yes. That's still part of a romantic relationship, isn't it? That hasn't suddenly changed overnight, has it? No. Phew! Now, go away, Captain Obvious. And since they are both also legal, you can take your moral high horse with you.
The next most-oft cited objection to a May-December romance will concern, bizarrely, the hobbies and pastimes of those involved.
" How can they have anything in common?" they will demand in horrified puzzlement.
I could go into a whole list of things people can easily have in common that are not age-specific but it would take up a lot of precious space and would risk stating the obvious, and since we've just got rid of that guy... Some could try to argue that a decade effectively separates two people musically and culturally, but they might try bearing this in mind: there is no doubt I was on this earth when Journey first brought out 'Don't Stop Believing' but since I was more interested then in my Space Hopper than anything on the radio, it's not unsafe to say also that I have as little memory or meaning attatched to the song as do any of the 20-something 'Glee' cast reviving it now. Also, I'm pretty sure Simon Le Bon's haircut was every bit as silly as Justin Bieber's and he certainly had no less an army of silly teenage girls ( and their mothers in some cases ) swooning after him than does young Mr Bieber today. So the players in the pop-culture game may have changed but the rules generally haven't: silly haircuts on smug little boys at whose feet silly giggling girls will throw themselves. Did I miss anything out? And not every teenager/younger person goes ga-ga over pop-culture icons either. I certainly never swooned when I was a teenager ... Okay, I might have gotten a bit woozy over Sigourney Weaver, but hey, pobody's nerfect, right? Still do, and come to think of it, she's got twenty years on me ... Similarly, not everyone enters a pop-culture desert after the age of 25. We may not care much about Justin Bieber but that doesn't mean we don't know who he or his haircut are. So the cultural-divide argument can go the way of Captain Obvious and his moral high horse and take care that the door doesn't hit it in the rear end as it is leaving.
One final argument tends to involve any offspring from previous relationships of the older partner.
" Oh, he/she has a son/daughter the same age!" they will shriek in sanctimonious derision.
Unfortunately this invites Captain Obvious back into the fray but it has to be said: if the offspring are the same age, then it stands to reason they too are legal, old enough to fend for themselves, and big enough to butt out of mommy or daddy's love life. Now, away you go once more, Cap'n, and feed that horse, will you?
I wonder what those who object to May-December romances would think if vampires like Bill and Eric were real? A two thousand year-old Viking vampire and a twenty-six year-old waitress ... would anyone dare to point out to Mr Northman that he is old enough to be Sookie's great-great-great-great ... oh, fudge it! You get the point. And I don't care if Pam was born in the year 1 million BC, she looks darned fine right now and even if she doesn't know who Justin Bieber is, well, sometimes we all wish we didn't know that.
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Ripley The Squirrel ...