Back to Top
Monday 24 Jun
86327 users - now online: 1101 people
86327 users - now online: 1101 people login

Printer Friendly Page  

by Rick van der Made in Columns & Opinions , 26 juli 2018

Dit artikel is ook in het Nederlands beschikbaar

I turned fifty this month. On the morning of my birthday, I looked at myself in the mirror, saw some new crow’s feet around my eyes, and grabbed the framed family photograph that was made when my father turned fifty (in 1985) to compare myself to him.

On this overexposed photo, my father looked closer to seventy: white hair, weathered face with a somewhat stern gaze, while wearing a dull and stiff suit with an even duller tie.

Brand clothing, the gym, fish oil capsules, detox, de-stressing, face cream, beautician, creatine, vitamin preparations: it all meant nothing to my father.

He considered enjoyment of life and good food more important than a nice suit. My mother cooked the traditional Dutch way, with more than just a pinch of salt and lots and lots of butter. He took a large glass of red wine every day and smoked a cigarette once in a while. When his two sons-in-law were there, a cigar was lit up. I do not believe my father ever worried about crow’s feet - an empty wine glass was much worse.

I, on the other hand, can be terribly vain. While getting older, I have noticed that I have come to terms with the fact that my belly will not disappear out of its own accord anymore, that I can also do the shopping at Albert Heijn in old sweatpants, and that I do not panic immediately each time I discover a new wrinkle, frantically dialling my botox doctor.

“People are poorly prepared for ageing,” my seventy-year-old neighbour from Rotterdam once said. At the time I was just under thirty and I did not really understand what she was talking about. Youth truly does not get old age. Perhaps that is for the best. You cannot be a future promise if you have to carry the burden of too much past with you.  

The day prior to my birthday I once again did the fifteen minutes abdominal muscle workout with my gym class. While sitting I had to touch my toes with my fingertips. I bent over, but my fingers did not get beyond my knees. “Don’t stop there, Rick! Up to your toes!,” my twenty-four-year-old trainer Lesly shouted, grabbing his shoes without bending his legs and a big smirk on his face. I looked at my sixty-year-old neighbor sitting next to me. He tapped his forehead with his finger and left.

I lay back thinking of pan fried pork chops, boiled potatoes with gravy, a huge bottle of red wine, and coffee with apple pie and lots and lots of whipped cream.

“Let’s go, Rick!,” Lesly called, “You are not elderly yet!”
“I’m turning fifty tomorrow,” I yelled back.
“Almost elderly, then!,” the joker said.

“And a big cigar to round it all off,” I thought, trying to touch my toes with my fingertips, again to no avail.



published Nov 2017       

published Sep 2015       

published Oct 2016       

published May 2018       


In the New Issue of Gay News, 335, July 2019

Self-employed Escortboys

More from Columns & Opinions
More from Gay News- issue 323
More by Rick van der Made

Roze Filmdagen

Amsterdam Gay & Lesbian Film Festival

learn more |visit


Unique and popular gay friendly Hotel & B&B

learn more |visit

bottom image

Entire © & ® 1995/2019 Gay International Press & Foundation G Media, Amsterdam. All rights reserved.
Gay News ® is a registered Trademark. © articles Gay News; duplication forbidden. Inclusion only allowed after written approval of the publisher, with clear source mentioning Articles used by third parties will be invoiced and cashed where necessary. Gay News | ISSN: 2214-7640 | ISBN 8717953072009 | Wikipedia.
Follow Gay News:
Twitter Issuu
RSS (dutch) RSS Editors (dutch) self-employed Escortboys

Contact us

© 1995/2019 Gay News ®, GIP/ St. G Media