Gettin’ Old Ain’t What it Used to Be

26 11 2008

I’ve heard it said that 60 is the new 40, and maybe it is. I was looking through some old family pictures recently, and remarked to myself that my grandparents were about the same age when I was born as my parents are now. But my grandparents LOOKED like grandparents, white hair, wrinkles, sensible shoes, the whole bit. And my parents certainly don’t.

I don’t know if previous generations hadn’t heard of hair dye and moisturizer, or if our society has become one that refuses to age gracefully (I suspect a bit of both), but there’s no denying that you’ve got to be a lot older to look “old” now.

No better example of this exists than to look at the First Ladies Bush. (wait…that sounds all kinds of wrong, but I’m leaving it, so there). Barbara Bush was in her early sixties when her husband moved into the Oval Office. And Laura Bush is almost the same age as she packs her family up to leave it. The difference in what a woman in her early sixties looks like is striking:

Here’s Laura Bush at age 62:


and Barbara Bush (back in 1989) at 63: