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October 31, 2006



I think anyone trying to emulate the fictional mack daddy is going to be disappointed, as you can only be 38 for a year. What are men supposed to do--resign themselves to a lifetime of sterility at 39?

Joe Smith

Of course he does. Otherwise, what basis of comparison would he have? Of course, he's also fit, well groomed, and well spoken (although not rich).

This is a pretty easily observable phenomonemon. When I was a freshmen, the girls wanted seniors. When I was in my 20s, they wanted 30 year-olds. It didn't balance out till I hit my 30's. In the 30s, a man has a larger dating pool that includes his own age, those younger AND those older.

It doesn't surprise me, actually. A man's physical beuaty is greater when he is younger, but beauty is not the most imoortant quality for women. What women crave...maturity, stability, experience, and (yes) wealth, is found among older men.


I like d being 27- old enough to know better, young enough to still be... young.

I'm 31 now, and I find that aging to be terrifying and comforting at the same time. I'm terrified of phsically deteriorating, but I'm very comforted by the emotional and mental maturity that comes with age.

Lynn Gazis-Sax

I think I was prettiest in my twenties. Most desirable? That depends on to whom, and what qualities they'd be looking for. I'm definitely a better provider now.


In terms of my body, I am in better physical shape than I have in my entire life. I'm in my late twenties right now. I got far more attention from the opposite sex, though, when I was younger, a little flabbier and in a band. Go figure.

It only goes downhill from here, from what I can see, and I've looked hard.


The most desirable age in terms of who I'm attracted to has always been 2-5 years older than me. That's been true for as long as I've known what "desire" was (many, many years now). Although, given the above, it must have been true at some point that I was attracted to 18 year olds, the people who are currently 18 are no more desirable to me today than a lump of clay.

Given the empirical data available, I have not yet reached an age at which I could be described as "desirable."

Shawna R. B. Atteberry

I'm 36, and I'm fine wine. :) I look and feel better than I did in my 20s. I don't think I've peaked yet. And according to my 40-something friends, I haven't started living yet.

I also think 38 is a very desirable age, just ask my hubby. ;)


When I was 50 and posted a series of photos on my blog I got by far the most outright, non-grudging public (though mostly anonymous) assertions of my attractiveness -- dozens of women and men ranging from older than 65 down to as young as 19 said I was very attractive. On the other hand my partner fell in love with me when I was 33 and married me when I was 35 so in a relationship sense I was most attractive (or as attractive as I ever really needed to be) then. But then again I had sex with several dozen partners between ages 19 and 22 so maybe I was most attractive then. Golly it's just so confusing! Especially since *none* of those were when I was 38!

Or... hey! Maaaaybe this "peak attractiveness" thing isn't as cut and dried as some people think.


Joe Smith

Just for grins I checked Wiki's list of the "Sexiest Man Alive" and clicked on names until I realized I had better things to do. A few points:

1) I excluded NOBODY. These are the first names I hit. I didn't cherry-pick the oldest guys.
2) I chose names that were unambigious sex symbols (I didn't click on Dennis Leary or Steve Carrel)

Heres what I came up with:

Vince Vaughn 36 (1970)

Sting (1951)

Clive Owen (1964)

Brad Pitt (1963)

Samuel Jackson (1948)

George Clooney, (1961)

Russell Crowe, 42 (1964)

Matt Damon, 36 (1970)

Johnny Depp (1963)

The ONLY young'un I found was Heath Leger at 27.


Poor Mr. Ledger. Ten years short of desirability.

And really--does anyone think 21-year-old women making a Top Ten list these days would include Sting? They probably barely know who he is.


I'm 26 now, and it seems by almost everyone's verdict, the best is yet to come. Hugo, you made my day.

Lynn Gazis-Sax

George Clooney is my age? I've always thought he was goodlooking, sure, but somehow I was assuming he was much older than me (and, actually, older than I'd want to go out with if I were single). Turns out he's younger than my husband. And Russell Crowe is younger than me, and for some reason I thought he was older. I guess I have a skewed impression of movie stars' ages.


The girls in my youth group last year chose Usher, Paul Walker, and some other youngster whose name I forget. I agree with mythago; they only vaguely know who Sting is.

Lynn Gazis-Sax

Oh, wait, I'm thinking of Russell Crowe as older because I'm thinking of him in A Beautiful Mind, where he was both schizophrenic and got aged considerably in the course of the movie. And there's probably something similar for George Clooney, though I can't think what off the top of my head.


Paul Walker? The actor? He's my age. He's twice the age of your typical high school youth group girl. Literally old enough to be their father. Usher's been out a while and must be close to 30 by now. Did they mention any guys in their teens or just "geezers?"


I'm ten years too old for youth group, and I've seen used napkins that are sexier than Sting. Usher should be 28. Ledger, Gyllenhaal, Timberlake, Orlando Bloom, Ashton Kutcher, Josh Hartnett, Ryan Gosling, Andre Benjamin, etc were all born in the late 70's and early 80's. Also, there's also a huge difference between Brad Pitt at 38, and Bill from accounting at 38. Hotties are hotties. Most men aren't.

Lynn Gazis-Sax

ust for grins I checked Wiki's list of the "Sexiest Man Alive

Just for grins, I checked the same list, and see 20 white guys and just one single African-American. Is anyone seriously going to tell me that African-American men are inherently less sexy than white men? I think there's a selection bias here. (And that's not even getting into any other races.)


It was just too funny to let go. Hugo's been talking about what men "should" do. The particular "should" he has been emphasizing is, to paraphrase, that men should not view women young enough to be their daughters as potential romantic partners. In this thread he references his youth group. The two names that he mentions are guys who are old enough to be these girls' fathers, even if only in a "Gilmore Girls" way. Most PEOPLE aren't hotties, but that judgement is subjective. For example, I can't understand why one of my (good looking)friends took up with a much older gray haired guy with a wife for 5 months last year. She kept talking about how handsome he was. When I saw a picture I was stunned. Regardless, my emphasis wasn't "how could think that THAT is hot?" Rather, it was "What part of the 10 commandments do you not get?"


19 is a fun age! But I wouldn't say I'm at my "peak." I'm still loosing my baby fat (I still have that baby fat line on my arms, right below my elbows). Looking forward to my 20s, when my adult life will kick into high gear - like starting my career, getting married and reaching my physical prime. Only 1.5 years to go until I'm 21! YES!

Amanda Marcotte

Well, if Joe Smith and his friend only want to have sex with 38-year-old men, then it's not mine to quarrel with them.


I've been enjoying older men since I was legally able to do so. So far my natural tastes have been of men who were 37/38-45ish... yumm. I just assumed that was my personal prefrence. (That said, once a man gets older then that, I don't plan on ditching him. Just that right now, that's just where they've been so far.)


I dated a couple older guys before I got married. 39 and 43 I think. They were wonderful, sexy men.

My hubby though is 28. So who knows. I think he'll be sexier in ten years, but let's not tell him that. ;)


Hey, Mr. Dave, Sting at any age differential is still NOT an acceptable option. EWWWWWW.

As for "shoulds" and acceptability, it's one thing for a 15-year-old girl to have crush on a distant Hollywood 30-year-old, who she'll never, ever meet, who is no actual threat to her well being. It's entirely another (illegal) thing for a 40 or 30-year-old man to have sex with a 15-year-old, particularly if he's in a position of authority. I guess I just don't see what's funny, I mean... are you arguing that it's a good thing to want to have sex with minors?

I don't get it.


Well, most H-wood actors that are 30+ often don't look or act their age.


Dave, Veronica:

And Sting's now playing the lute and singing 16th century love ballads!? I'm thinking that's dropping his hotness factor way down, unless you're the type of person who likes listening to the vocal stylings of "Roxanne" against 16th century English melodies...

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