Oh, Madonna, please don’t be a vain, delusional monster who actually believes the barely legal stud boys you date might truly be interested in you. If so, your legacy risks becoming as absurd as the traffic cones implanted into your cheeks. If not, you will continue to be one of the coolest chicks who ever lived.
I’ve always had mixed feelings about Madonna. On one hand, I’ve found her a needy little snot who’s badgered us into giving her the adoration she could never win from her papa. On the other hand, I’ve bought most of her albums and appreciate a dame who not only dominated the culture like she said she would, but outlasted all of her peers.
But what I’ve dug most about Madge is her “anything you can do, I can do better” attitude that’s pushed her to knock down double standards. If Michael Jackson could grab his crotch, so could she. If ghetto fabulous guy rappers could objectify women through the male gaze, she could, too. If Mick Jagger can rock himself into the home, well, so can Madonna.
And now, she has accomplished the one feat no one would ever have believed a woman could. She’s become a passé, increasingly unalluring old person who still gets to sleep with people half her age because she’s rich and powerful. At 52, Madonna has transgressed the final frontier of male privilege and conceit: trophy dating.
First there was A-Rod, the Yankee third baseman who allegedly dumped his hot wife and considered taking up Kabbalah for Madonna, seventeen years his senior. Next came 23-year-old Brazilian model Jesus Luz, then a couple dates with a Spanish H&M model 27 years younger than her, and now, she’s allegedly seeing a 33-year-old choreographer.
We usually give old rich men enough credit to realize the young biddies they date are only in it for the money and/or fame. Even when we pity these guys for holding onto their lost youth and sensuality, we envy their access to fresh-faced hotties forced to caress their balding heads and sagging torsos in order to access the cash.
‘I can buy sexy, young companionship,’ these men might tell us. ‘I’ll give these gals a career, a life of luxury or their fifteen minutes of fame. In exchange, I shall devour their youthful eroticism.’
Why can’t rich, powerful women be like rich, powerful men who offer young lovers a giant step towards their futures in exchange for some company? Why can’t a woman like Madonna enjoy this peculiar consequence of power our culture so admires?
Personally, I can barely carry on a conversation with a guy in his early twenties, let alone date him. I can’t imagine hitting middle age only to chase after dippy boys who just happen to be built like brick shithouses. And if I were unfortunate enough to divorce the father of my children and man I love, the last thing I’d do is bed Latin American supermodels who barely speak English. But, as I found out somewhere between fingerless gloves and attempting to vogue, I’m not Madonna.
Yet, I wonder why her dating life has turned her into such a joke. Madonna has built an extraordinary career, lived through two marriages and raised a family. She has had enough flings to put ex-flame Warren Beatty to shame, yet managed to sneak in a couple attempts at romantic permanency. Though love has not been as constant as her career, she seems dead set against holing herself up in an old maid’s cave.
If Madonna wants to use her celebrity to fetch young tail, more power to her. If, in her waning years, she wants to have her Rocky Mountain cheekbones caressed by a succession of twentysomething studs, I say, don’t tell her to stop.