After the past couple of days, I think I need to lighten up! And when I found this, I just had to share it with you. This “banner ad” surprised me, more than anything, because of the environment where it came up:
MGTOW Forums, of all places.
“Remember your high school cheerleaders?” That text rolled over into, “They’re all grown up.” Introducing CougarLife.com.
CougarLife? (I think my “WTF” is understood.) What does THIS advertisement have that merits its inclusion on MGTOW Forums? I did ask the Webmaster, with a question in the “Shits & Giggles” section of MGTOW, less to ask than to tease him. Yes, I recognize that higher-volume websites pay their way by such “rolling banners,” courtesy of GoogleAds and other such services; maybe I’ll find I need them here some day. But CougarLife is just so eloquently mal-appropriate to “Men Going Their Own Way” that I had to look behind the banner.
CougarLife, subtitled “The Ultimate Catch,” is quite obviously a dating website. It bills itself as “the premier online dating service that pairs women in their prime with younger men and ends the double standard!” As of my click-aboard, they claimed “more than 2,257,000 members.” Their home-page was plastered with the image of a beautiful blonde woman, reclining in a fluffy robe that rode back behind her torso and showed off the lovely line of her waist flaring to her hips. My first thought was She ain’t no Cougar, not in my book. (Maybe to a fifteen-year-old boy, though!)
Let’s face it, the Cougar meme has been with us since a lusciously-mature Anne Bancroft seduced a callow young Dustin Hoffman in The Graduate (1967). There have been older women with a taste for younger men since long before, but the Society of that time was too genteel, too discreet, to admit it. (There have been older men with a taste for younger women, as well – plenty of us, one could argue “all of us” – and they were subject to Society’s scandal, and shaming, and scorn – I acknowledge that in the interests of full disclosure. Let’s go on.)
Of course the wraps came off of “Older Woman Romance” as part of the Sexual Revolution, and many of these Older Women washed off any shame of it as they might have washed yesterday’s perfume out of their hair. Why shouldn’t they have the same privilege as their husbands, to take on a youthful lover? And even more so, for the mature single woman – why can’t she saddle-up on a lusty young man and ride him into the sunset? Sexual equality, that’s all she wants, and it’s her right.
And this whole question of “sexual equality” has grown, has changed, has matured as Society has embodied the “equal rights for women, equal opportunities for women, equal outcome & results for women” that were the announced and public demands of the Feminist movement. I’m not criticizing the idea of “sexual equality.” I’m just saying that … it’s out there. It has arrived.
The front page drop-down menu gives you the up-front opportunity to look for “Cougars” or “Cubs,” with a place to choose your home-city and a set of age-brackets that is helpfully filled-in. I started with “Cougars” between 35 and 65 years old. When I switched it to “Cubs,” the brackets were 18 and 35 – how helpful! (I switched back to Cougars.) A click on “See Your Matches” provided four thumbnail photos and one “space-filler” thumbnail, and an immediate invitation to Sign Up Now! (Mmmmm … no. Not tonight, dear, I’m getting a headache.)
A convenient link to “Cougar Basics” told me more:
As the homepage of our website states, “Cougars are Women in their PRIME: independent, sexy and wildly successful.” Urban Dictionary’s most accurate definition is, “A 35+ year old female who is on the “hunt” for a much younger, energetic, willing-to-do-anything male.” Urban Dictionary however wrongly states that these women can primarily be found in night clubs and bars. The territory for a cougar has adapted with society and many of these same cougars no longer are turning to the nightclub and party scene to find cubs. (A young man who is attracted to an older woman or women, no doubt intrigued by the passion and experience that only a cougar can offer.)
I went on from there to the FAQ, which was mostly about memberships. You can start with a basic, but the FAQ gives you some “seductive” (yeah, I catch the ambiguity) reasons to upgrade to a Premium membership. I gave that a pass, and went on to their “Safe Dating Tips.” They offered the usual – never give out your address or home phone before the first date, tell two other people where you’re going, always meet in a public location, go at your own pace – and one that stood out:
Avoid the “Cyrano-syndrome”. Emails can be deceiving so don’t get carried away in an email fantasy.
Cyrano-syndrome. How apt.
Oh, don’t take it so hard. I drove into this madness. Every woman needs a little madness in her life.
- Edmond Rostand, Cyrano de Bergerac, Act 4
CougarLife is, for the mature woman, what AshleyMadison is for the mature man. “At our age, do you feel all the best men are taken?” the front page asks. “Join CougarLife.com and meet great young guys before they’re snatched up.”
I don’t deny these “cougars” the right, any more than I’d deny it for the Gamers who pick up their younger women with their own wiles. Any more than I’d deny the right of my contemporaries, looking for some tenderoni on Ashley Madison.
Older women, chasing younger men? Do I object?
Hell, no, sonny. You can have mine.