Friends and casual neverland readers will back me up when I say that I tend to be very age-positive. That is to say, while my sexual interests include young (adult) hunky wrestlers, I’m frequently even more turned on by more mature wrestling bodies. Like good wine and cheese, a homoerotic wrestler with a few more seasons under his belt is often more my taste than a smooth, bright-eyed and bushy tailed youth. Before anyone lobs some ageist insult my way, let me state that this has been pretty constant throughout my adulthood. Now at 40 years old, my fantasies are frequently populated by homoerotic wrestlers at least my own age. There’s a seasoned confidence, a practiced self-possession that seems to me to come only from the accumulation of years that extremely few men can pull off until they stop getting carded when they buy alcohol (though I don’t know if there’s a direct connection with being carded).
|Daniel Radcliffe (wand jokes forgone)|
But there are moments when age creeps up on me unexpected, and I have to just sit back and check myself. This happened when I was recently re-watching the first Harry Potter movie. No, I’m not ashamed to say it. In my late 20s and early 30’s, I joined the generation of pre-teens consumed with fascination of the world of J.K. Rowling’s imagination. Apart from intrusive fantasies about Professor Lupine (a werewolf, no wonder), the whole franchise was awfully separate from my sexual appetites until pics from Daniel Radcliffe’s stint in Equus surfaced, showing off his barely legal (but legal!) bare body and unmistakably provocative assets. So, having graduated into sexual fantasy material, going back to watch a movie filmed when he was only 11 years old or so is… oddly disturbing. His Sorcerer’s Stone incarnation is not alluring to me, but I can see the smoldering, sexy young adult that he’s going to become and suddenly Jungian taboos grip my conscience as if I were a 17th century Puritan.
|Jonathan Lipnicki, all grown up.|
Similarly, I’m unsettled in seeing these recent shots of Jonathan Lipnicki, the formerly bespectacled, precocious child star to Tom Cruise’s type-cast, shallow, PR juggernaut who loses his own sense of self in his fanatic devotion to marketing who he thinks he’s supposed to be in Jerry Maguire. Not that I like the movie, so I’m not likely to watch it again anytime soon or frequently. But the superimposition of Lipnicki’s child-self onto these rockin’ images of his sweaty, ripped young adult body is a powerful reminder to me: I’m not as young as I once was.
|Lipnicki now does BJJ|
It seems that Lipnicki is still acting, and more to the point, he’s competitive in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. I simply would never have guessed when I watched him, sort of wanting to punch him for his über-cuteness in 1996, that I’d find myself sexually aroused and sporting runaway homoerotic wrestling fantasies about him 15 years later.
Age is a slippery thing. To say that it’s relative is a gross understatement. At the age of 40, I’m old enough to remember sexy young adults when they were just diapered, slobbering infants. I’m also old enough to carry a mental filing cabinet of sexual fantasies including some lovely, horny, classic hunks who may be of an age to once again be diapered and possibly slobering as elders. And people wear their ages differently. Some 21 year olds, like Lipnicki, strike me as chiseled, fantasy-worthy hunks, whereas some of their peers appear to me to be far too young to be uncorked. Some 60 year olds sport sculpted, toned bodies and sharp, sexy minds to go with them, whereas some of their peers look… well, “old”!
|Lipnicki looks like he’s itching for a fight.|
The only thing that I’m very certain of in the socially constructed shifting sands of age and eroticism is that my choice of the objects of my lust almost definitely say more about me than about them or their subjective states. We are, all of us, in possession of that moving target of age. But what that means, and how we inhabit our ages and our bodies and our sexualities, is nothing more and nothing less than works of our own invention.