This column may contain strong language, sexual content, adult humor, and other themes that may not be suitable for minors. Parental guidance is strongly advised.
This week the long-suffering people of Aleppo barely escaped annihilation when a last-minute ceasefire was declared to allow civilians to evacuate to safety. Donald Trump proved he was the swamp—slime, sludge, bottom-feeder and all—by continuing to celebrate his very slim victory in the Electoral College and appointing the very people to his administration who would make the swamp overflow. And Rodrigo Duterte confessed to, among other things, a Fentanyl addiction, and killing three men as mayor of Davao. To which his bumbling press secretary, in a feeble attempt at damage control, clarified that he didn’t execute (pun intended) the murders “personally.”
It’s rather difficult to regard the coupling of a little, long-limbed ballet dancer in full millennial glory, and an aging, leathery-skinned rock legend whose foppish hairstyle has not evolved since the ‘60s, with dispassion. Of course in the scheme of things it is as insignificant to the daily revolution of the earth on its axis as Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s divorce, but still… it would be advisable to prevent an epidemic of babies being born to fathers who are unlikely to even see their offspring graduate from kindergarten, much less attend the ceremonies with their faculties intact.
A photo posted by Elizabeth Scarlett Jagger (@lizzyjagger) on Dec 16, 2016 at 8:43pm PST
Yet the creepy dynamic of the old, old man and the young, young lass remains. Just shy of 30, Melanie Hamrick is 44 years younger than her beau. At 73, Mick Jagger—that’s Sir Mick to you—could easily be Hamrick’s grandfather; the Rolling Stones lead singer is in fact already a great-grandfather. Jagger was born in 1943, when England was still at war, Churchill was still prime minister, and Hitler and Mussolini were the despots of the day. Smartphones were a futuristic fantasy; the biggest thing in tech that year was the invention of the “Colossus” computer by the British in order to break German encryption. No laptops and certainly no social media. People spoke on the telephone and sent letters through the post. Hamrick, on the other hand, was born in 1987. By then, Reagan was president of the United States, Thatcher was Prime Minister and the Cold War was still on—the Berlin Wall had yet to fall. At the age of 44, Jagger was well into middle age. But he was a certified rock star with the glamorous, millionaire lifestyle, and the continuing adulation of fans all over the world. He was also a legendary playboy who had by then fathered several children, including Karis, with Marsha Hunt; Jade, with Bianca, the Nicaraguan socialite and only woman whom he legally wed; and Elizabeth and James, his first two children with Texan model Jerry Hall, his common-law wife until their spectacular split in 1999. After siring four children with Hall, he went on to father a child, Lucas, with the Brazilian model Luciana Morad, with whom he was conducting an affair while still with Hall. His many infidelities are alleged to be the reason for his split from Hall. But sexual relations between the very old and the very young, despite the common ick factor—is she really sleeping with him?—have been taking place since the beginning of time. In general, the man is way past his prime, sometimes even wheelchair-bound, while the woman is decades his junior, often in the pink of health if not in the first flush of youth.
A photo posted by Melanie Hamrick (@melhamrick) on Jul 12, 2016 at 11:44am PDT
It could be that such relationships emerge out of sincere love and sexual attraction, however much cynical the rest of the population may be. For a man drawn to younger and younger women as he ages, it’s fairly elementary to decipher. Beneath the supposition that a younger woman would probably be more docile, more malleable, having not quite lived a life compared to a septuagenarian, that it’s mostly all about the male ego here. About vanity and virility. About holding on to a particular mantle of power. About, also in typical male fashion, not really giving a sh*t at the end of the day if you don’t live to see your children grow up, finish college, get a job, get married and have their own children, because they will be well provided for by the trust fund you will set up for them from the moment of their birth.
According to sources, Jagger has pledged to “provide full support for Hamrick and the baby without formalizing their relationship, with the couple intending to live apart.”
Sources also say that the relationship stands little chance of ever being formalized as Jagger has allegedly moved on to another flame, a model—how predictable—who at 27, is two years younger than Hamrick.
But what was Hamrick even thinking? Oh, I’m sure the child, bestowed the rather long-winded, if not pretentious and dated, name of Deveraux Octavian Basil—Eton-bound, without a doubt—is adorable, and will grow up to be good-looking, long-legged, perhaps artistic, and definitely wealthy. Yet he is likely to be fatherless fairly early in life. And that, research increasingly shows, can have a detrimental impact on one’s life.
As Carol Gill noted in The Independent, “The rise of older fathers is the perfect example of behavioral economics in action; rarely do these chaps consider the long-term consequences of having a baby in old age. What impact it will have on their life, their partners, and their offspring.”
But I suppose they may relish the glory of defying age itself and the general downward trajectory of the penis as a man sidles into senescence, and remaining the fount of fertility.
In an essay in Slate, Elissa Strauss wrote, “what’s possible isn’t necessarily the best for their children.”
“To begin with the obvious: The older a father is, the younger his child will be when he dies. This isn’t a moral judgement, just a biological fact. More science: While the AARP set keeps making sperm, that sperm tends to be of lesser quality than what men make during the first few decades following puberty.”
Clearly Mick Jagger believes his is top-quality sperm. And that he may just be immortal. After all, he is a legend.
B. Wiser is the author of Making Love in Spanish, a novel published earlier this year by Anvil Publishing and available in National Book Store and Powerbooks, as well as online. When not assuming her Sasha Fierce alter-ego, she takes on the role of serious journalist and media consultant.
Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely those of the author in her private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of Preen.ph, or any other entity of the Inquirer Group of Companies.