We take pleasure in a vintage wine, in a well matured single malt, in a seasoned and well cured cigar or even a well aged cheese. These are all things that through nature improve with age.
Its a well known formula. If its old and well established it has value. A painting by a famous painter, or a medal with a tangible provenance becomes valuable or a building with history becomes a protected/listed building. All these things are improved or enhanced with age, be it their value, the experience or even the concept of the item.
But is this something that we can apply to everything? For example think of a phone, or a computer. Some things are perishable, and others have a sell by or use by date. In these cases it is the reverse, age does not improve the item at hand.
Lets be honest when it comes to good music, how often do we appreciate the older stuff, even as each generation grows up, it is the stuff of the past that we enjoy more. Probably something to do with the memories that the music of our youth invokes.
So age is a double edged sword.
So what happens when we apply age to people? Do we accept that age matures a person just like a fine wine, adding to the value and experience of the person, or are we eternally fixated by the beauty of youth?
This poses a difficult question for society, as it would seem that the predominant trend is to always be looking for the best looking, best features, best results as humans. We jump at cosmetic surgery to maintain our youth, strive to hide our age, lie about who we are and how old we are. Various industries are infamous with their ruthless craving for the young and the beautiful people.
While there are exception to every rule, I'd say that for the majority of our society the beauty of youth is captivating, alluring and poses far too much sway on our system of values. You hear of men "trading" in their wives for a younger model, or a woman being a Cougar and having a younger toyboy.
It makes me giggle sometimes when I think about it. We are never satisfied. But it does make me wonder at times. What is the real fixation with youth. We all grow up, we all get older, we all grow grey hair, get wrinkles and get fatter round the waist. It comes from a natural slow down in our body. Fact of life!
Personally I don't get it. But then maybe that's just me. While its ok to be young and foolish, I do prefer the fact I'm a little wiser, a little more experienced, and a little more capable to survive. Don't get me wrong I still have my crazy moments where I may well seem like a stupid teenager, but overall, I'm glad to be slightly older, slightly more "lived".
Experience has been good to me and I've had a chance to do a lot in life. I've travelled and seen places I can't describe well enough in words. I've made mistakes and lived to learn a lesson. I've loved and lost. These are things I'd not change. If I could go back, it'd probably be too my early 30's once more. Yes there are things I'd have done differently, but over all I enjoyed my youth, and lived it well. The only thing that sometimes frustrates me is that I never really got a chance to come out so to speak.
But while I enjoy chatting to younger people, and love their passion for life, their enthusiasm and excitement for life, I'm glad I don't have so much of the uncertainty, doubt, and craziness of youth to live through anymore. That part of being young is unattractive to me. The indecisiveness, the fickle friendships, the raging arguments, the raging hormones. It makes life unpredictable and weird. There is one thing that is wonderful about it though, it makes for interesting stuff to write about.
This is more of just a rambling blog today, based on something I was reading earlier about man kinds fixation on youth, and how it impacts on the choices people in our society make. It got me thinking about how I view youth. I think I've come to the conclusion that while I can agree that beauty does lie in the youth, inner beauty is far more important and means far more. Beauty goes, character lasts forever.
Thought for today - "Love is the flower you've got to let grow." John Lennon
Song for today - Starlight by Muse http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xsoPsxKVhP4