More Places I Have Seen

In alphabetical order:

Ahrweil, Germany

Heidelberg, Germany

Ludgate, London

Pie Town, NM (near the Continental Divide, temperature: -2F)

Silverton, CO

Trastevere, Rome

Zwettl, Austria

As with all these pics, right-click to enlarge, and feel free to use as wallpaper etc.


Places I Have Seen

Indulge me for a moment, O Gentle Readers (like you don’t all the time) while I invite you all to take a stroll down Memory Lane with me, and re-visit some of my favorite places in the world.  It’s by no means comprehensive, nor are the pics ranked by anything other than alphabetical order.  (Some are quite large — right-click to embiggen.  And feel free to copy or use them as wallpaper etc.)

All Cannings, Wiltshire, England

The village green, Bishops Cannings, Wiltshire

Bodensee, Meersburg, Germany

Grand Place, Brussels

Back home

Hurley, Berkshire, England

Jean Talon Market, Montreal

Luxemburg Gardens, Paris



Vina Del Mar, Chile

Gratuitous CV

Oh, Carol:

It’s becoming really difficult to lose this obsession with the girl… and then there’s this immortal line:

“The trained RAF pilot also lamented the public’s interest in her looks.”

Uh huh.

No Longer Wanted

Pop Quiz: Name This Granny (answer at the end of this post).  Bonus point for guessing her current age, and no cheating with Internets.

Never one to shy away from the tough topics, La Paltrow has weighed in on what happens when a woman ages and loses her desirability (or, as she so charmingly puts it, “fuckability”).

‘To get wrinkles and, like, get closer to menopause, and all these things… what happens to your identity as a woman if you’re not f**kable and beautiful?’
Gwyneth firmly believes self-acceptance is key and that as you get older, your inner beauty radiates outwards.
‘Luckily, what’s happening at the same time in parallel… is you just start to like yourself’, she continued.
‘I think you get to a point where it’s almost like your sort of pulchritude is waning in a way and your inner beauty is, like, really coming out, and so it’s this funny shift that’s happening.’

This is what happens when you work in an industry that a.) has no problem with (literally) fucking children and b.) enforces impossible standards of beauty upon its workers:  of course  you begin to think that only the young can be desirable and that women lose their desirability when they age.

As with so much of what Paltrow spouts, it’s mostly bullshit.  I can think of several older women who have aged and become wrinkled, and who could get practically any heterosexual man to bed them.  And I’m not just talking about actresses, either.

Where Paltrow, as always, misses the point is that she confuses “desirability” with universal  desirability.  I’m not au fait  with the current crop of young women who are deemed “hot” by the poplar culture, but let’s just take Scarlett Johansson as someone I know was once (and may still be) considered the ultimate in female desirability.

She’s heading for her 35th birthday as we speak, and I think it’s safe to say that in twenty-five years’ time, she will still be quite desirable, just not universally so.

Here’s one-time paragon of beauty Sharon Stone, at age 60:

…and still-gorgeous Jane Seymour (at age 65):

But let’s ignore for the moment the fact that among actresses, skillful surgery can play a part in prolonging youth (or at least hiding the effects of age) — I have no idea whether any of the above has resorted to same, but we can play the odds — and acknowledge that while stupid men and callow youths (some overlap) are forever in thrall to the “perfect body” (as defined by, say, Playboy  magazine), many men (myself included) find that women get more interesting  as they get older.

And in my case, anyway, that’s not just a function of my getting older;  at age 30, for example, I thought that Sophia Loren (then aged 50) was the sexiest woman alive:

…and I’m pretty sure I wasn’t alone in that thought, either.  Now she’s nearer 85, and I’ll bet that for her age she’s still as sexy as hell, unless of course all the wheels have fallen off, so to speak.

And even then, some  randy old goat would… let me not go there.

I said it earlier, but it bears paraphrasing:  for a woman to be desirable to all men regardless of her age is never going to happen.  What we do know is that very few older women (with some notable exceptions) are going to be undesirable to all  men.

If Paltrow and her aging ilk are going to go all “Boo-hoo-hoo nobody wants to fuck me”, I would suggest they relocate from Hollywood (and from Southern Cal in general) and try living in a retirement community.  They’ll get more pricks than a pincushion, from all accounts.

Frankly, if Paltrow really is having a problem (and it’s not just some new PR ploy to sell more vaginal marble eggs), it’s probably because as she’s got older, she’s become increasingly more batshit crazy.  I would suggest that that, and not her wrinkled body,  is the passion strangler. Read more

Vanishing Scenes

On a long-ago vacation in the Algarve, my two early-teen sons, who had left the hotel pool to go and swim in the sea, came rushing back towards me in a state of high panic.  “Dad! Dad!  Ugh!  There are these old women lying on the beach without bikini tops!  Ewwww!

In the interests of parental concern, of course, I had to see for myself what was causing such panic, so I wandered over to the clifftop and peered down.  Yup, the boys were correct:  there was a crowd of elderly French women, sagging, pendulous breasts burned almost chocolate brown, sprawled on towels all over the white beach sands.

That may be a thing of the past, according to some study or other, because it appears that French women are no longer interested in topless sunbathing.

Once widespread in France, topless sunbathing is going out of fashion, a survey has shown, with fears about harassment, body image and health seen as prompting a trend to cover up more at the beach.
Fewer than one in five Frenchwomen under 50 said they sported a ‘monokini’, compared to 28 percent a decade ago and 43 percent in 1984, according to the survey by French pollster Ifop published Tuesday.
Young women aged 18 to 25 said harassment, criticism of their bodies and being ogled by men were their biggest barriers to going topless.

Note the highlighted “under 50” qualification above, because it probably means that the sights which so frightened my sons back in the early 2000s are not going to disappear soon.

So as a public service to my Loyal Readers, here are a few examples of what’s going to be vanishing in France:

No need to thank me;  it’s all part of the service.

Gratuitous Mother-Daughter Stuff

I’ve always enjoyed Uma Thurman’s acting, and she’s unconventionally pretty (which makes her interesting).  She also produces pretty children.  Here she is with her daughter Maya (right):

I know what y’all are thinking… don’t go there.