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Memo To Hillary: Get A Face Lift! Other articles by this author  

Looks Count
Nancy Morgan
December 23, 2007

Let's get real. For women, looks count. Always have, always will. Human nature made men and women from different molds. If you doubt that, just ask yourself this question: When is the last time you heard a woman comment on some guy's cute buns? Or on his rippling pecs?
Men are more visual than women. This is reality. Many men are more likely to appreciate a woman based on her bra size than her IQ size. This is the way God made them. Men, even the new, feminised, 'metro-sexuals' usually learn everything they want to know about a woman in the first glance. If they're smart, they have learned to hide this under a societally induced patina of 'sensitivity,' but you can bet your bottom dollar men's fantasies don't include long conversations, emotional bonding and sexual equality.
The picture of 60 year-old Hillary showing her age with wrinkles, crow's feet and bags has sparked a national conversation about aging. Specifically, about aging women. Men, as we all know, get better looking with age. On men, wrinkles and squint lines are a mark of character. Graying hair is a sign of maturity. Older men are still sexy. Not so for women.

Picture Sean Connery and Madelaine Albright smooching. Get my point?

My friend's son came by the other day. He saw a picture of me from my younger Hollywood days. "Wow, you used to be good looking." Ouch. Reality strikes. I'm 54 years old now. After a lifetime of turning heads, all of a sudden, I don't turn heads anymore. Because of my age, I've had to put away forever the vixen persona, the seductive 'catch me if you can' personality that used to be second nature (and fun)! On a 54 year-old, those traits come across as Betty Davis in Whatever Happened To Baby Jane. For a woman over 50, flirtatious behavior and seductive glances evoke pity instead of passion. That's just the way it is.
Men, on the other hand, can, and usually do, continue to be boys even in their 70's. Flirtatious behavior in older men is a sign of youth and virility. In a woman, its smirk inducing. Yes, Shirley, there is a double standard. Life isn't fair.
Feminists can go on and on about how shallow and superficial physical looks are. They have a point. The larger point, which feminists miss all together, is the effects of aging on women are a sexual turnoff to most men. And men, even aging men, will cling to their perceptions of femininity and sexuality till death. Who would choose sagging skin, wrinkles and drooping breasts over taut flesh and perky boobs? Not any men I know, unfortunately. I think it has something to do with the perpetuation of the species.

My brother Ike is a prime example. He's 50 years old and divorced. Tall, good looking, smart and a man of few words. In other words, a catch. I asked Ike what is the first thing he looks for in a woman. He had the grace to look ashamed as he sheepishly said that for him, looks were numero uno. Based on a lifetime of experience, I know Ike is not the exception, he is the rule.
Our society expects women in the public eye to hide all signs of age. Older women who look their age are associated with rocking chairs and grandchildren, not power politics, sexy pouts or President of the U.S. Wrinkles and age spots on women remind us of our mothers and mortality. On men, they're not an issue. As Rush Limbaugh so aptly put it, "Women age, men mature." 
If a woman defies societal convention by looking her age, she pays a price. One of the prices is sex, or the lack thereof. There, I've said it. And no matter how uncouth it is to mention, all of us at one time or another have looked at an aggressive woman and thought how much a good romp in the hay would improve their personalities. (Can you spell Hillary?) If a man acts aggressive, he is automatically given points for wisdom and experience. Such is life.  

In this 24/7 media age, perception often trumps reality. And a perception devoid of youth and/or sexuality will always score lower on the desirability scale. By the way, when is the last time you saw a female anchor with wrinkles?  

I was one of the lucky ones. Because I was a looker in my youth, I had many opportunities thrown in my lap. I didn't fool myself that it was because I was smarter or better. I knew the value society placed on youth and beauty. Ugly women had to work five times as hard to be offered the same opportunities. Not fair, I know, but that's the way the world is. For a woman, looks count. 
Now I'm older and smarter. Now I have wrinkles. Now, I have to make my own opportunities instead of having them showered on me. After a lifetime of learning to say 'no' gracefully, I find they've stopped asking. Things change. Because my looks have changed. 

Hillary is now showing her age. And the same society that condemned Paula Jones for her 'big hair', Kathleen Harris for her excessive make-up and Linda Tripp for her less than attractive visage is coming full circle. Maybe life is fair after all.

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