|Sexy Seniors and the Fountain of Youth
The Sex eZine - Sex Lives of the Elderly
`Sexy' sells, `senior' doesn't
Can a hearing aid also be a sex aid?
It's a given that sex sells – and now marketers are finding it's a smart way to sell to seniors.
Aging but active boomers and their still lively libidos are changing how products are packaged and marketed.
Hearing aids are promoted as "sleek and sexy devices" in colours such as Champagne Beige, Samoa Blue, Racing Green, Cabernet Red, Sexy Silver and Negligee Black.
A new product called Betty Beauty for safely dying hair down there to match hair up top has gone back to the lab to boost its grey coverage.
And Ensure, the supplement drink used for years to deliver nutrition to the frail elderly is now described as a "cool and creamy shake" in au courant flavours including coffee latte – a "delicious between-meal snack...to help you stay healthy, active and energetic."
The mature population is even changing the way products are paid for: Chicago-based Chase Bank issues a Kiss Platinum Visa credit card. Monthly statements include "inside gossip straight from the veteran shock rockers."
Aging boomers want convenience, luxury and platinum consumer status without relinquishing their claim on sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll.
(While no comparable figures are available for Canadians, the fastest-growing population of drug abusers in the U.S. is middle-aged and white, reports Advertising Age. And a German trend-scouting firm told Newsweek, "The tendency in Europe today is for seniors to have a second puberty." The magazine also quoted a survey showing "73 per cent of Italians older than 60 were still having plenty of sex, two-thirds of it chemically assisted.")
Aging boomers want all the comforts and privileges of growing old without giving up any of the pleasures and peccadilloes of youth – including their Harleys, once an icon of youthful rebellion.
The average Harley-Davidson customer today is fiftysomething. And boomers represent 40 per cent of the market for Vespa scooters. In short, the generation that, in the 1960s, didn't trust anyone over 30 now wants to take the ethos of the '60s with them into their 60s.
And the marketplace that wants their estimated $1 trillion (U.S.) in disposable income purchasing power is eager to help them do so.
In Canada, people over 50 already spend more than any other group and own half the credit cards in the country. They're big spenders on clothes, cars and cosmetics, advises Boomer Marketing, a Toronto agency. Fast forward six years and they'll account for one-third of the Canadian population.
Even more important for the marketplace, boomers "are the first generation to resist aging," notes Jim Dettore, president of the marketing consulting firm Brand Institute.
Boomers, Dettore says, are demanding products that make them look and feel younger. And they respond to marketing messages emphasizing vitality and sexuality rather than maturity and decline.
Dettore's company has branded or is working on such products as Levitra, the erectile dysfunction drug, as well as hair and skin enhancers and cosmetic dermal fillers.
The combined affluence and determined age defiance of this unprecedented population base, in tandem with the shrinking post-boomer market of 18- to 49-year olds, is changing the way marketers regard 50-plus consumers, once dismissed as undesirables.
Just as they were the target demographic when they were young, transforming the music, leisure, food, apparel and housing industries, among others, the unmatched numbers and clout the boomers bring into their greying years are making the marketplace take notice – and belatedly scramble to get their attention.
Already, with leading-edge boomers entering their 60s, they've proved a goldmine for such segments of the marketplace as health and fitness, anti-wrinkle creams, pharmaceuticals, travel, recreation, cosmetic surgery, spas, resorts, condos. Once again, they're influencing clothing, housing, music and media. Even furniture. Downsizing homes not only spurs the real estate market but also boosts sales of smaller-scaled furniture and appliances.
Dettore, 54, knows what aging boomers want. More important, he knows what they don't want.
They want to be recognized as active, adventurous, attractive and sexual and they'll respond to messages reflecting that image. They don't want to be stigmatized with outdated stereotypes. In their 50s and 60s, they don't want to lumped together with people in their 80s.
And they certainly don't want to be called seniors.
"`Seniors' is a real big stigma," Dettore says. This demographic requires "a whole new language that has adopted `aging' as an alternative to `senior.'"
That's why you never hear about "senior rock stars." They're always referred to as "aging rockers" – or, as in the case of Kiss, "veteran."
It's okay to say "aging" because, well, everybody is always aging and the term is non-specific. And "boomers" is a word that still carries the status of a select and powerful cohort.
In short, seniors have re-branded themselves.
For example, Forever Young, an Oakville-based publication owned by Torstar, the parent company of the Toronto Star, presciently changed its name in 1998 after 13 years as Today's Seniors. Mainly, it was changed because advertisers wanted to appeal to front-end boomers who were then entering their early 50s, says editor Don Wall.
"Younger, vibrant people in their 50s and 60s in no way want to be associated with the stereotype of seniors," he says.
The "S" word, he says, "may suggest an elderly state that's not vital or vigorous."
Another reason the name was changed, explains Wall, is because "there were people who didn't want to be on the cover. Lloyd Robertson didn't want to be on the cover because it was for `seniors.'"
Recalls Robertson, 73, , "It was many years ago and it was our public relations person who said, `I don't think you should appear on the cover because it's a seniors magazine and you're not 65 yet.'"
But with the name change and tweaking of the target demographic, Forever Young two years ago featured sexy 48-year-old Kim Cattrall on the cover. "In the past three and a half years, we have (also) had Rod Stewart, Governor General Michaëlle Jean, Dolly Parton and John Travolta among relatively sexy youngish people," Wall says.
The current cover has stand-up comic and Deal or No Deal host Howie Mandel. It's unlikely any of these celebrities would be described as "seniors."
Nevertheless, seniorfriendfinder.com remains the name of an online dating site with more than 450,000 "mature" members.
If, by any chance, any of these online daters are getting intimate over the phone, their Champagne Beige and Cabernet Red hearing aids indeed might come in handy as sex aids.
In April 1978, Diane Keaton, then 32, won the Academy Award as best actress for her performance in the romantic comedy Annie Hall.
Today, at 61, she will be back in theaters in another comedy, Because I Said So. She is playing the mother of grown daughters, one of whom has romantic problems. But the inescapable ad campaign for the movie makes considerable note of Keaton's own romantic issues.
Hey, people like her and wish her well -- and want to laugh with her, and can imagine sleeping with her.
Much has been made about over-50 actresses getting their due this year -- with Helen Mirren on track for an Oscar for The Queen, and Meryl Streep collecting praise for The Devil Wears Prada.
Still, it's the likes of Keaton and Susan Sarandon (a little less than a year younger than Keaton) who make a better point for women of the boomer generation.
Both say that you can be smart, tough and sexy in your 60s. And Keaton keeps making the argument in commercially successful romantic comedies.
Her career, which has also included directing and producing, has certainly had its share of acting in dramas: three Godfather films, Looking for Mr. Goodbar, Reds, Shoot the Moon. Even nominal comedies can find her making sharp dramatic turns; look at her moves in Manhattan, still one of her best performances.
But when you talk about a public image, then Keaton's is, if not exactly hot, certainly laden with appeal to men.
Off-camera, she has been linked with Woody Allen (who also made many movies with her, including Annie Hall), her Godfather husband Al Pacino and Reds director Warren Beatty. That lineup suggests not merely a babe, but a smart one. Smart enough, too, to have known that they weren't husband material -- as if the never-married Keaton needed one.
That gets us closer to her prevailing image in the movies. She is not merely the smart object of desire, but one who can have it all. Decade by decade, she has provided touchstones for women her age who long for the personal satisfaction Keaton's characters achieve.
In Annie Hall, for starters, the chilliness finally attached to her title character masks how far she has come as a person. She is independent of her mentor-lover (played by Allen). She has absorbed his ideas about what's important in life, then formed her own opinions, although they are contrary to his.
In the '80s, she had Baby Boom, playing a career woman forced to learn how to be a mother -- but who, by the movie's end, has found a balance between motherhood and a professional life, as well as love.
In the '90s, she joined Bette Midler and Goldie Hawn for the divorced-women's revenge fantasy First Wives Club.
And this decade, she has had Something's Gotta Give, written and directed by Nancy Meyers, who also co-wrote Baby Boom. Keaton was now reassuring women who, like her, were in their 50s with the idea that love was not over; in fact, they could draw on men from either end of the age spectrum.
Keaton was wooed by both Jack Nicholson, almost a decade her senior, and Keanu Reeves, close to 20 years her junior. And she threw in a rare nude scene -- played for comedy, but meant to remind audiences that her suitors' ardor included lust.
Some of you may now be wondering how long she can keep doing such roles. Could she be playing a woman of intelligence and desire in her 70s? I don't see why not. Keaton will probably still fit that bill in her own life. And there will be plenty of moviegoers who have gone through adulthood with her, and who still want to believe in limitless possibilities.
There's more bad news for those pudgy couch potatoes, junk food junkies and TV devotees - and this time it really hits them where it hurts.
A study published on Thursday found that about 18 per cent of United States men age 20 and up suffer from erectile dysfunction - and the condition is strongly linked to a sedentary lifestyle of little physical exercise, poor diet and lots of television.
Not surprisingly, the condition was most common in older men.
But there was a strikingly high prevalence in men with diabetes and high blood pressure.
"This really means that staying active - moving more and eating less - and staying healthy, in addition to being good for your cardiovascular health may also be good for your sexual health," said epidemiologist Elizabeth Selvin of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, who led the study, in an interview. "It's just another reason to get off the couch and exercise."
The study in the American Journal of Medicine sought to get a sense of the prevalence of erectile dysfunction, formerly called impotence, in what Selvin called "the post-Viagra era".
The U.S. government approved Pfizer Inc.'s Viagra in 1998 as the first pill for erectile dysfunction - the inability to attain an adequate penile erection for satisfactory sexual activity. The arrival of Viagra not only provided a treatment option, but boosted awareness of the formerly taboo subject and made it more acceptable to discuss.
The study estimated that 18.4 per cent of U.S. men age 20 and older - about 18 million - have the condition. Among those ages 20-39, 5.1 per cent had it; ages 40-59, 14.8 per cent; ages 60-69, 43.8 per cent; and age 70 and older 70.2 per cent.
Half of the men in the study who had diabetes also had erectile dysfunction. Nearly 90 per cent of men with erectile dysfunction had risk factors for cardiovascular disease, including diabetes, high blood pressure, poor cholesterol levels or smoking, the study found.
Diesel Tries to Make Global Warming Sexy
Italian clothing brand Diesel has launched a ”Global Warming Ready” ad campaign that the company says tackles climate change in “a tongue-in-cheek ironic voice.”
The ads feature New York completely submerged in water, St. Mark’s Square in Venice filled with tropical birds rather than pigeons, the Eiffel Tower in Paris surrounded by the jungle, a flooded Rio de Janeiro, a beachy Mount Rushmore in South Dakota and Finland, once Nordic, turned into a desert.
“Global Warming Ready explores the issue and its possible consequences with subtle and beautiful images,” the company says. Diesel says it does not use dramatic tone or shocking images in its campaigns.
The campaign features newspaper, magazine, and outdoor elements.
Diesel says that the print ads are supported online with various consumer materials including, “Ten things you can do to stop Global Warming”, a Global Warming report and a link to Diesel’s partner, www.stopglobalwarming.org, an online grassroots movement.
Shower Sex Prompts E-mail From Professor At Yale
New Haven, CT (AHN) - At least one frolicking couple at Yale University has prompted a professor to send out an e-mail reminding students that the showers are for showering.
The e-mail was sent out after a couple's romp in the shower caused the bathroom to flood and put it out of order for 90 minutes.
Professor Jonathan Holloway, a master at one of Yale's 12 residential colleges, sent out the e-mail to about 330 students. In it, he warned students against "intimate activity" in the showers.
In it, Holloway mentioned that several times already this spring term students have come across a couple having sex in the shower stalls, and urged the couple to stop or "such continued brazen public displays of affection will only invite public embarrassment. I beg of you, let's not go there."
Sex with client sinks senior lawyer
The former head of the governing body for Ontario lawyers has been suspended from practising for 60 days after admitting to a sexual affair with a client.
George Hunter, 59, offered an emotional apology to his colleagues, family and ex-lover yesterday after pleading guilty to professional misconduct.
"My conduct has profoundly hurt those closest to me – my partners, my friends and, most importantly, my family," he said. "I'm very sorry."
Hunter, who stepped down as the treasurer of the Law Society of Upper Canada in December 2005, acknowledged his 2 1/2-year affair with a woman he represented in a family law case had placed him in a conflict of interest.
The relationship began almost three years after the client, known only as X.Y., retained Hunter, a prominent Ottawa lawyer and partner at the firm of Borden Ladner Gervais, to represent her in a dispute with her ex-husband over access to their daughter.
Over dinner, Hunter told her his marriage "had been over for a long time but he continued to live with his wife for the sake of their children," according to a statement of fact filed with a law society disciplinary panel yesterday.
The relationship ended abruptly after Hunter asked X.Y. to meet him at an Ottawa restaurant, where he informed her that during the time they had been sexually involved, he had also had affairs with two other women, the panel heard yesterday.
In a move that might be worthy of entry in the annals of unromantic gestures, Hunter, just before disclosing those affairs, presented X.Y. with a copy of section 2.04 of the law society's Rules of Professional Conduct.
It deals with conflicts of interest between lawyers and clients. Hunter wanted X.Y. to acknowledge that she had read it, according to a statement of facts filed at the yesterday's hearing.
A week after storming out of the restaurant, X.Y. was distressed to find Hunter on her doorstep.
Earlier that day, he told colleagues at a meeting of his law firm's management committee about his affair with X.Y. They agreed it should be reported to the law society and Hunter wanted X.Y. to confirm their relationship was as he had described.
"I realize and I accept I have caused pain to my former client," he told disciplinary panel members Mark Sandler, Sydney Robins and Andrea Alexander. "I sincerely apologize ... she is a fine, caring mother who has understandably found these proceedings very stressful."
While Hunter's conduct was described yesterday as falling short of the standards of integrity expected of members of the legal profession, there are no rules in Canada that explicitly ban sex between lawyers and clients.
The law society's professional conduct rules warn lawyers against conflicts of interest and other situations that could impair their objectivity and loyalty to a client.
Law Society prosecutor Doug Hunt, who had asked the panel to suspend Hunter from practising for four months, said the case drives home for lawyers "just how dangerous the waters are when one chooses to enter into a personal relationship with a client."
"I think it can safely be said any lessons to be learned by Mr. Hunter have been learned," Hunt said. "The issue is really one of general deterrence for the broader membership of the law society."
The longer the relationship goes on, the greater the risk a lawyer will not deal with a client's legal issues objectively, he said.
But Chris Paliare, Hunter's lawyer, said there has been no suggestion that X.Y. "got anything other than appropriate legal advice" on dealing with her problems, which also came to involve property tax issues and the bankruptcy of her former husband.
Paliare presented the panel with a large book of letters from prominent members of the legal community, many describing Hunter as warm, generous, conscientious and principled.
"There has been no lawyer more universally well-liked in our community," wrote Ottawa criminal lawyer Donald Bayne.
Calling the circumstances of the case "unique," Paliare argued Hunter's conduct warranted a reprimand or, at most, a one-month suspension.
When his two months in the penalty box are over, Hunter will return to work. Borden Ladner Gervais "is taking him back," Paliare said.
References to sex and sexual organs continue to draw headlines and ire from journalists and residents in the United States during early February 2007. In the state of Maine one high school basketball coach, Mike Remillard, instructed his boys during a half-time action break to reach their hands into their pants and check their manhood --meaning their penis-- before the boys were allowed to return to the basketball court.
The high school principal Patrick Hartnett reported in a statement that Remillard wanted to know who had the biggest 'dick' in town as a way in which to boost his team's spirit against the opposing male basketball team. "He then required his players to all stand up and put their hands down their pants and check their manhood" in the locker room Hartnett reported. One player is said to have not followed instructions although it was unclear whether or not that player had any manhood. Remillard's team won the game, but the coach was dismissed from duties.
At the Calhoun College dormitory, on the campus of Yale University -- an elite college for the privileged class in the United States, professor Jonathan Holloway was upset by sexual intercourse having left its mark in the dormitory shower stalls. Holloway e-mailed Yale officials that intimate activity in the showers was not acceptable -- and often such activity left showers stalls with unmentionable residue.
Yale's conservative co-editor of Critical Mass, Dan Gelernter, found that the shower sexual intercourse of late was an example of how Yale has declined into the depths of moral degradation.
In Seattle, WA, (government salaried) port employees were found to have been sharing sexually explicit video links on office computers and watching sexual play during working hours. Nearly one third of employees who are responsible for security at the airport were named in the investigation. All employees investigated were male.
Meanwhile, Seattle columnist Ken Schram suggested that state residents were afraid of sex. Washington state legislature is considering public sex education standards...but such laws are controversial in the United States because most equate 'sex education' with 'how to have sex tonight,' or, as Schram puts it "when kids are told about logarithms, they just run mathematically amok."
Schram suggested it is up to parents to teach the responsibilities of sex and the public education system would inform students on sexual activity from a medically accurate point of view to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. Judging from the ages of those 34 men at Seattle's port authority, their children are of school age, so one should question how parents could say 'no' to public sex education when the parents get turned on by videos rather than the real thing.
Roman Catholic priest George Chaanine of Las Vegas, NV, apparently raped and brutalized a female choir member. Chaanine fled the scene and was later captured on the run in the neighboring state of Arizona and now faces rape, assault, and attempted murder charges in Nevada.
Greenville, NC, former sheriff deputy James Matthews was caught asking a 12-year-old girl for sexual favors in Internet chat rooms. The 12-year-old was not actually a girl, but an undercover police officer working to capture online predators. Matthews was fired from the force in 2005, but the police department would not explain circumstances of termination.
Kids in Jacksonville, FL, were enjoying themselves as well this past week. One 6-year-old boy at a Kinder Care Learning Center told his mother that an 11-year-old girl performed oral sex on him while another 8-year-old boy observed 'how to.' At nearby Oceanway Middle School an administrator ran into a 16-year-old boy and 14-year-old girl engaging in intercourse and moaning to rhythms of their own making.
Teacher Joseph Circle remained in jail after he was accused of having a six-month sexual relationship with a female student half his age. The 13-year-old girl and Circle met in August 2006 and the girl is reported to have visited the teacher's apartment regularly.
Sexual relations should not hurt San Francisco, CA, mayor Gavin Newsom. The mayor admitted (and apologized for) an affair with the wife of a friend who was also his campaign manager. Newsom and his former wife divorced in 2005 so he was a bachelor at the time of the affair with the friend's wife. San Francisco is the only truly liberal city in the United States, and even rivals the definition of what makes a city liberal by Europe standards.
Word on the street from the few conservatives who reside in San Francisco was - at least the Newsom affair involved a woman and not a man.
HGH Does Not Stop Aging
A new study has found that taking human growth hormone will not help the elderly to look and feel half their age afterall. The product is sold world wide, purchased by the those of the aging population who are striving to relive their youth, but according to University of Stanford researchers, they maybe doing more harm than actual good.
"I'm concerned this is a substantial and growing problem. In an aging society, wanting to age healthfully and well has included the use of this very powerful hormone, the effectiveness and safety of which are still under investigation and have not been proved for this purpose," stated Dr. Marc Blackman, clinical director of the U.S. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine.
Taking growth hormone can subject a person to a number of unwanted side effects including; the possibility of diabetes, joint swelling and pain, and carpal tunnel syndrome.
Lead researcher Dr. Hau Liu, states that approximately 30,000 Americans are taking human growth hormone in an attempt to slow the aging process:
"They are spending anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars a month," he said. "They are spending this amount of money and getting only a slight, if any, benefit, but increasing the risk of serious side effects."
Currently, growth hormone is not approved in the US as an anti aging drug.