This sounds entirely too familiar:
[A]lmost without exception every man over 50 in this country appears to have the same basic approach:
Hi, blah blah you’re very pretty blah blah … (hugely passive-aggressive discussion of everything his ex-wife did to him)
It’s just proof positive that the 85/15 situation that one encounters in one’s college and young adult years, where 15% of the guys are sleeping with 85% of the girls, just never ends. The world is full of lonely old men. They send photos of themselves that look like nightmares an eight-year-girl might have about her creepy uncle; taken from below, triple chins in evidence, crazed look in the eyes, backlit. They talk about their feelings a lot. Whatever characteristics once distinguished them from the bland mashed-potato mass of humanity have long since disappeared or been rendered vestigial. They are jealous, petty, needy. Many of them have hydraulic-pressure issues that only resolve briefly, in the occasional sunny morning. One wonders why they continue living.
At least I don’t send photos of myself, a lesson I learned half a century ago after sending a photo of myself to a cheerful Canadian girl from whom I never heard another word.
I do, however, talk about my feelings a lot, which can’t be a good thing.
One is also reminded that human society evolved to its 1950s (or whatever) apex for particular and specific reasons. You’re supposed to be happily married when you’re old. Or, failing that, just married. There’s not much dignity in old-person dating. Not much joy, either. Even the sorrows are diminished — and that’s a shame, because sorrow in a relationship is the engine that has powered many a creative effort since time immemorial. Still, one question remains, put to you by a man who is staring down the rifled barrel of forty-five himself. What is better: to fade away into harmless grey sexless irrelevance, or to be tormented until death by a mind, an attitude, a spirit that is essentially and defiantly teenaged? Do you want to come home to old age with your shield, or on it?
I’m fading, though the torment occasionally breaks through. (The spirit pretends to be willing, though the flesh checked out years ago.)
Our 45-year-old correspondent, however, has some distinct advantages:
Even when I wasn’t really single, I was able to fill my dance card and as five minutes looking on this site will demonstrate, I’m a hideous fucking chud who weighs an eighth of a ton, has the speaking voice of a ten year old girl, and is fundamentally incapable of being pleasant to anybody.
We should all be so fortunate.