This shouldn’t matter! Who cares, our readers cry, mostly on Facebook. It’s true. In an ideal world, it wouldn’t matter.
Only: this ain’t an ideal world. This is the real world. Botox. Bulimia. Make up worn not for fun but to cover up. Self-hate in light of society and media’s ideal expectations, held up over our heads.
Celebs, like it or not, are examples. It’s wonderful and helpful to have a wonderful and helpful example so our culture can change, and our young men and women can stop expecting themselves to never get old if they’re to love and accept what they see in the mirror.
On Keanu Reeves & Alexandra Grant, his Girlfriend.
Keanu Reeves has just gone public with his first girlfriend in a long time, since some tough tragedy (see below) when he was younger. And the fact that she looks his age (it helps that he looks young for his age, and her hair is white) is inspiring everyone everywhere.
White hair is beautiful. Wrinkles are beautiful. No make up is beautiful, as I just wrote.
Keanu Reeves and his girlfriend are beautiful.
It’s not a story in that it’s none of our business, but he’s a celebrity, so it is a story in that we can all learn from this happy couple in their wonderful example, as discussed in this NY Times article (and the comments are great, too):
“…A part of me feels decidedly anti-feminist writing about another woman’s appearance, but we don’t move the conversation forward by pretending the natural outward signifiers of age should never be noticed, discussed or even celebrated. I desperately want to see wrinkles and gray hair as an objectively good thing (look at these lovely markings of your full life on this planet!), or at least as a neutral thing, but the truth is I don’t yet. I’m getting married next year, and much as many brides search around for a hair stylist or makeup artist they like, I’ve been comparison-shopping for plastic surgeons who can do my Botox just right…”
“…And that’s why this possible romance between Mr. Reeves and Ms. Grant feels meaningful. It matters to see a woman who possesses physical attributes that dermatologists, hair colorists and targeted ads on Instagram have long told me to change, cover up or prevent before they get worse. It would be nice to live without that burden, but for now it’s almost as nice to watch others do so.
For a time-tested public figure like Mr. Reeves to proudly stand there, beaming, with a woman who appears not to be in a battle against time sends a message to the rest of us that perhaps we can put down the snail mucin salves and jade rollers ourselves. It says you can be both desirable and look exactly your age…”
From NY Times comments:
“If we are all being completely honest, she looks older than 46. But, whatever, that’s ok! Keanu looks younger than 55. So can we all just get over the whole “age-appropriate” thing? They are just two people who have been long-time friends and collaborators, who may, or may not, be dating, having a good time out at an event. Who cares about their respective ages? Good for them!”
From Bonus Read: Why do we fear Aging?
“…we seem to wrap our self-esteem up with our youthful looks. Why do we think young people look better? I know plenty of beautiful old people. I don’t fear death—I fear living a life that doesn’t add up to anything.
Many Buddhists say this after every meal, or meditation session, or meeting:
By this merit may all attain peace, may it defeat the enemy: wrongdoing.
From the stormy waves of being born, growing old, sickness and dying
From the ocean of suffering may I free all beings.
It’s a nice thing to keep in mind: no one gets out of life, alive. Live for the benefit of others. Put down the moisturizer: sit down on the meditation cushion, and dedicate yourself to a wonderful world in terrible need.
And, three choice Reddit comments:
Nice to see a famous middle-aged man who is not dating a 20 year old.
It’s like at some point you realize that it’s nice being able to be around another person for the 23+ hours a day you’re not mashing your genitals around.
The 23 hours, 55 minutes and five seconds a day?
Let’s not just talk about him (though he well deserves this first longterm happiness in many years since swearing off commitment after tragedy), let’s learn about Alexandra Grant, also via Reddit:
“Here’s an article that actually is about her. It provides more info about the art that Grant has worked on.
As for the business they’ve worked on together:
‘The two have been friends for years, working together on Reeves’ book Ode to Happiness, from 2011, and even co-created a book together called Shadows in 2016, which Reeves wrote with illustrations by Grant. The book-making duo doesn’t stop there. They co-founded a publishing house called X Artists’ Books, publishing artists books, since 2017. Here’s some more about what Grant does, besides pose in pictures with Reeves.'”
“Keanu doesn’t age. Even the computer agrees.”
“…Our task here is to practice loving our wrinkles, loving our hair loss. Love our aging. We must be among those who do not fight death but who still embrace life, and do not give in to it easily…and then our life and wisdom may unfurl like an epic, and