Friday, December 02, 2005

Passing the sell-by date

John Derbyshire, resident contrarian and cranky Tory on the Corner, likes his ladies barely legal. In his latest NRO column, he declared:
Did I buy, or browse, a copy of the November 17 GQ, in order to get a look at Jennifer Aniston's bristols?** No, I didn't. While I have no doubt that Ms. Aniston is a paragon of charm, wit, and intelligence, she is also 36 years old. Even with the strenuous body-hardening exercise routines now compulsory for movie stars, at age 36 the forces of nature have won out over the view-worthiness of the unsupported female bust.

It is, in fact, a sad truth about human life that beyond our salad days, very few of us are interesting to look at in the buff. Added to that sadness is the very unfair truth that a woman's salad days are shorter than a man's -- really, in this precise context, only from about 15 to 20. The Nautilus and the treadmill can add a half decade or so, but by 36 the bloom is definitely off the rose.
After some women took issue with this statement, he posted this to the Corner:
Conservatives, as I recall, are the ones who believe that "human nature has no history." It follows that we are at ease with the fact that the human female is visually attractive to the human male at, or shortly after, puberty, and for only a few brief years thereafter.

***Civilized*** male conservatives, among whose number I very much hope to be counted, regard the visual attractiveness of women as a welcome lagniappe in the grand scheme of things, other attributes being far more important practically all the time, and those other attributes being the grounds for our respect.
Other bloggers are already on the scene and have made the obvious point that it's insulting to women of drinking age, including Derbyshire's wife, to imply that they are not worth looking at and that only the attraction of their sparkling personalities allows their lovers to touch them without shuddering.

Despite the fact that I was probably more physically attractive ten years ago than today (I was in better shape then, and had better skin, strangely enough), Derbyshire's statement still skeeved me out. Here's a randomly chosen sample of women he apparently thinks would not be interesting to look at in the buff (all pictures SFW, if SFW includes bikinis):

- Angelina Jolie (30)
- Halle Berry (39)
- Monica Bellucci (41)
- Charlize Theron (30)
- Eva Longoria (30)
- Jennifer Connelly (35)
- Mena Suvari (26)

And, for comparison, famous actresses in Derb's sexual attractiveness range:

- Emma Watson (15) (yes, Hermione)
- Hillary Duff (18)
- Mary Kate Olsen (19)

Male readers are invited to comment on whether they would rather look at someone from column A or column B. Of course, naked photos of Ms. Watson are illegal.
blog comments powered by Disqus