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July 31, 2008

The Fate of the Six Pack

Michael Blowhard writes:

Dear Blowhards --

* Sigh: What a few decades will do to even the most heroic male physique. My own efforts at fitness stopped being a matter of "getting into shape" and started aiming at "stemming the decay" long ago.

* Dora or Estelle?



posted by Michael at July 31, 2008


The photos of the aging men should help drive home the idea that marriage really pays off once you've lost the sixpack and most of your hair. These paunchy guys are what most husbands look like, but their wives still love them. One hopes.

As for that Dara Torres, whoa, horrible and emaciated. Her torso looks like a creepy insect.

Posted by: Sister Wolf on August 1, 2008 1:23 AM

Easy, Estelle. Am I the only male who doesn't find six-pack abs on women attractive?

Posted by: Bryan on August 1, 2008 1:33 AM

I keep thinking that I'm going to really hit those weights at the gym, and I'm going to knock out 100 situps before I do anything else in the morning.

And, I'm going to do it... soon as I finish this cup of coffee. I like a little jam on my toast, too... although I do eat the 8 grain bread from Costco.

I've got to let breakfast settle in a bit, then I'm going to do those situps. For sure.

Posted by: Shouting Thomas on August 1, 2008 5:54 AM

A big "no" to mini-man musculature on women. It reminds me of how Jennifer Aniston and Courtney Cox unnecessarily deteriorated during the later seasons of Friends, with their gym-sculpted sinewy and veiny arms.

Posted by: PA on August 1, 2008 8:07 AM

I'm more interested in Ms. Torres butt, and the track marks on it.

Posted by: Brutus on August 1, 2008 8:19 AM

You are not alone, Bryan. I detest the hardbody look in general, longing for those warm, wooly, curvy, fleshy seventies women to come forward in time, strip naked for me, and remind me that real women's bodies are still possible, even in today's Dark Age.

But look at her! Glork! Lordy, she could pass for a tighty-whitey undies model, oh nineteen years old, appearing on packages of Jockey shorts at a department store near you. Dan Savage would be creeeemin' his jammies looking at "her".

I mean, she really is a beautiful boy. Really. Swims like one, too, apparently, what with all that male hormone gushing through her system. Donny Torres, undie model, pederastic fantasy object, and Olympic swimming cheat.

I think I'm in love. With Estelle.

Posted by: PatrickH on August 1, 2008 9:31 AM

Dara needs help. Let's all chip in and buy her a eat-all-you-can-for-a-year card at Krispy Kreme.

Posted by: Donald Pittenger on August 1, 2008 10:24 AM

The six-pack is actually sort of yesterday's news, today the ideal is the eight-pack. Very low body fat causes an extra pair of muscles to become visible at the lowest part of the abdomen. You don't see them on Dara Torres for some reason, perhaps they just don't show up on women.

Posted by: Peter on August 1, 2008 11:09 AM

A *much* nicer example of what women might perhaps, if very, very lucky and careful, aspire to, at this link.


Posted by: alias clio on August 1, 2008 11:44 AM

Oh clio. Helen Mirren has always been a major love and lust object of mine since my youth. Never have I envied any man more than the 17 year old (!) actor who had an affair with her while filming the movie "Cal". Oh to be initiated into love by that goddess.

I saw her interviewed on 60 mins by Morley Safer. She had him wrapped around her little pinkie (with Safer's enthusiastic cooperation). I've never thought the words "doffing my kit" could be sexy, but when she said them, I lost years off my life.

I want her. Goodbye Estelle.

Posted by: PatrickH on August 1, 2008 1:14 PM

Thanks be to Clio for that little day brightener!

Dame Helen and Goddess Sophia STILL make today's cookie-cutter starlets look wan by comparison.

Posted by: Brutus on August 1, 2008 1:24 PM

Ms. Torres has no boobs, no curves, better muscle definition than most guys. Yup, that's just the image that gets me in the mood for a spirited session of polishing the rocket. Not.

Every public opinion survey I've ever seen has indicated that, if forced to make a choice, something like 2/3 of men would prefer their women be 5-10 lbs. over their ideal weight than 5-10 lbs. in the other direction. Bounce, jiggle, and curves all signal fertility and at some primal level that's what attracts us guys to the ladies.

Posted by: c.o. jones on August 1, 2008 1:51 PM

No complaints this time that this one isn't a "real woman", hey PatrickH?

That splendiferous bosom is a gift of nature, though, and she can't take any personal credit for it, except perhaps in deciding not to have children. What I think is admirable as well as beautiful is the effort that made the rest of her body toned but still well-fleshed and well-rounded.


Posted by: alias clio on August 1, 2008 2:33 PM

No complaints, my dear clio. None.

I've always found Helen MIrren disturbingly beautiful...there's something about her that gets to me more deeply than just sexually and romantically. She shakes me up, somehow. Oddly, she has this effect no matter what her age in the photos. I couldn't take my eyes off the nubile young Helen in the gauzy thingy, but I also ached all over at the way she was smiling at her husband while she was shading her eyes in the bikini photo. I want her to smile at me just that way. Sigh. Oh Helen be mine.

Which is to say, longwindedly, that Helen Mirren is perhaps not a good example of how women can appeal to me to no matter what their age. She seems to me to sui generis, almost a changeling woman, come to torment my dreams from some darkling moonlit world of silks and webs and porcelain skin and liquid hypnotizing glances. She's a kind of enchantress, really.

Man, I got it bad! Do they have a pill for this? Gimme ten!

Posted by: PatrickH on August 3, 2008 9:59 AM

I still have some oxycontin if you need it, PatrickH.

Posted by: Sister Wolf on August 3, 2008 4:39 PM

The photos of the aging men should help drive home...

the desire to support for SENS.

Posted by: kurt9 on August 3, 2008 6:01 PM

Thank you, Sister. Fed Ex it, though. I'm in trouble up here.

Posted by: PatrickH on August 3, 2008 6:12 PM

P.S. How are you doing, Sister? If you're on oxycontin and not morphine, that's sounding like some pelvic repair has at least begun to be effectuated. Hope you're sleeping well, too.

Posted by: PatrickH on August 3, 2008 6:14 PM

Patrick H. seems capable of falling in love several times per post. Cupid must be using him for target practice. Invest in Kevlar, or become a poet, sir.

Christina Ricci seems like a prime example of body meltdown. She seemed so full and beautiful in "Buffalo 66." Today, she is just one more slice of generic Hollywood pie -- no ice cream and certainly no whip cream.


Posted by: sN on August 3, 2008 6:20 PM

Yes, poor Christina Ricci! She even had a breast reduction, like poor Jennifer Connelly. It's not a good trend, I agree.

Don't worry about PatrickH, he's just after my pain-killers.

Posted by: Sister Wolf on August 4, 2008 3:09 AM

I'm after much more than your painkillers, Sister. Much more.

[SUDDEN SEGUE ALERT] I had an affair several years ago with a tall blonde buxom woman who had had breast reduction surgery (she was still buxom post-surgery), not because her breasts were causing her any back pain, but simply because she disliked men staring at her (obviously very large pre-op) breasts. I considered this a tragedy, though I said nothing.

C Ricci and J Connelly have starved themselves into what I consider genuine ugliness. Why? Why won't women listen to heterosexual men? Why do they do this to themselves? To us?

sN: Point taken. Kevlar vest on order. I have corresponded with a poetess friend about my, ah, "condition", and she, being a poet, was exhilirated for me! Being in love is apparently a default condition for her...and she thinks it should be the default for everyone. Poets! No wonder Plato wanted to banish them!

Posted by: PatrickH on August 4, 2008 9:30 AM

Crushes (unless completely unrequited - i.e. based entirely on fantasy) are such a miserable experience that I can't understand why anyone wants to cultivate them.

This is one of the real differences between men and women, you know. A man with a crush is in raptures for a few weeks and then forgets all about it. A woman with a crush is a haunted, hunted creature, drained of energy. It's AWFUL. Luckily - and this is contrary to conventional wisdom - most of us don't get them as often as men.

Posted by: alias clio on August 4, 2008 1:00 PM

That's fascinating, Clio. I've always thought that "crush" meant the same thing for men and women, i.e., a kind of puppy-love, unserious, short-lived, and generally a happy kind of know, spring in the step and all. But you're saying they're not, unless they're pure fantasy.

Hmmm, that's an eye-opener, for sure. Women find crushes miserable. Have you written anything about that on your blog? And do they feel the same way about all-out love? That shakes me up a tad, because flirting in such a way that "crushes" happen is something I like to do. Maybe I should reconsider...

Posted by: PatrickH on August 4, 2008 4:26 PM

No, I've never written about it on my blog, except jokingly. Perhaps I might, someday, but it's a subject that makes me a little nervous. Incidentally, I think women can feel the fizzy, effervescent sort of crush without too much trouble, and probably most feel little more than that.

But I'd guess that there's a significant minority, perhaps even a near-majority, of us whose crushes go beyond that, if the crush-object encourages it (out of vanity or frustration or even, sometimes, hatred of women - no exaggeration, that) but doesn't actually declare himself.

I'm trying to work on a piece about this sort of thing, but doing it as fiction, though it has a core of truth. Don't know if it will go anywhere, though.

Posted by: alias clio on August 4, 2008 6:52 PM

Jennifer Connelly has had breast-reduction surgery? I no longer have a reason to live ...

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on August 4, 2008 8:10 PM

whose crushes go beyond that, if the crush-object encourages it (out of vanity or frustration or even, sometimes, hatred of women - no exaggeration, that) but doesn't actually declare himself.

I may be vain, sometimes frustrated, and women-hating, but this can also happen because the girl is delusional -- y'know, you all can let your wishful thinking get the best of you too.

"He's sending me signals, but why won't he speak up?" Maybe it's she who's encouraging herself...

Posted by: agnostic on August 4, 2008 10:21 PM

Michael, I have enough oxycontin for you, too. I watched Jennifer Connelly last night in The Hot Spot (stupid Doh Johnson movie) and she was not only gorgeous but full-hipped and large-breasted. Perhaps she didn't want to be type cast as the Luscious Babe. A tragedy!

Crushes are exciting when the people involved are not overly neurotic. The thill of the new and undiscovered..that's how a crush is supposed to work.

Posted by: Sister Wolf on August 5, 2008 3:53 AM

I have crushes on actresses on a regular basis, and it's a lovely part of life. Don't want to actually meet them, of course.

"The Hot Spot" -- now there's a soul-shatteringly rewarding movie! And not just Jennifer being dewy, luscious, and perfect in every way, but Virginia Madsen, who I'd be happy to watch doing her grocery shopping. Hey did anyone else enjoy the "Dog Whisperer" segment visiting Virginia Madsen and her French bulldog? I knew she was the kind of girl who'd have a French bulldog. I love French bulldogs.

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on August 5, 2008 9:43 AM

Yes, crushes can be delightful. I was thinking, though, of the kind of crush one might develop on, for instance, a very handsome married co-worker who insists on flirting and raising the level of intensity in what started out as a light-hearted exercise in mutual admiration. In such cases, one must let the ball drop and refuse to play any longer. Of course, that's a purely hypothetical example.


Posted by: alias clio on August 5, 2008 10:21 AM

Hypothetical Clio? I would normally be skeptical, but the Canadian government is not exactly chock full of "very handsome co-workers" (ditto for "very beautiful"). Gov't seems to attract a dumpy, conventional kind of body (and fashion sense!), your own pulchritudionous self excepted, of course. I encountered far more physically attractive women in private industry, both in numbers and quality.

A woman once slapped me in the face (hard too!) when I said she had an "abundance of pulchritude". She thought I meant "decrepitude". And then she hit me! Me! She hit me! We clearly need to bring back the classics in education. Sigh.

Good to hear that Jennifer Connelly hasn't had breast reduction surgery after all. I can breathe now.

With eternal love to the buxom and voluptuous among us (even the guys!),

Posted by: PatrickH on August 5, 2008 12:11 PM

I was being jocular, not literal, Patrick, when I said my example was hypothetical. It was an uncomfortable situation, for me at least.


Posted by: alias clio on August 5, 2008 2:34 PM

Oh. Well I'm glad you could be jocular about it, Clio. Yes, must have been uncomfortable indeed.

A "very handsome" man in the Public Service? It must be either a Crown Corporation or an independent agency. Couldn't be one of the mega-departments. There are no handsome men there at all, let alone "very handsome".

Question: Is it Clio or clio? You keep switching on me. I crave order, given the chaos of my inner life. Which is it? I'm suffering here, dammit! Suffering! And it's hot out too! I crave guidance in this matter. Miserere nobis (well just me, but still).

Posted by: PatrickH on August 5, 2008 3:15 PM

But she has had breast reduction, PatrickH. Believe me, I'm sad about it, too. Can you redirect yourself to Scarlett Johansson? Hers will probably stick around.

Posted by: Sister Wolf on August 5, 2008 6:33 PM

They'd better! I think I should kidnap them and hold them in, what, escrow? Preserve them for posterity. She'll get them back when she understands that breasts like hers are a lifetime commitment.

Posted by: PatrickH on August 6, 2008 11:55 PM

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