In Defense Of Cougars

In yesterday’s post, commenter Joel included a link to a letter by Benjamin Franklin to a young man extolling the virtues of no strings attached sex with older women. I reproduced it here because it is so damn funny… and true!* Ben was such a card. I especially like his Reason #5.

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Benjamin Franklin, Advice to a Young Man on the Choice of a Mistress (1745).

June 25, 1745

My dear Friend,

I know of no Medicine fit to diminish the violent natural Inclinations you mention; and if I did, I think I should not communicate it to you. Marriage is the proper Remedy. It is the most natural State of Man, and therefore the State in which you are most likely to find solid Happiness. Your Reasons against entering into it at present, appear to me not well-founded. The circumstantial Advantages you have in View by postponing it, are not only uncertain, but they are small in comparison with that of the Thing itself, the being married and settled. It is the Man and Woman united that make the compleat human Being. Separate, she wants his Force of Body and Strength of Reason; he, her Softness, Sensibility and acute Discernment. Together they are more likely to succeed in the World. A single Man has not nearly the Value he would have in that State of Union. He is an incomplete Animal. He resembles the odd Half of a Pair of Scissars. If you get a prudent healthy Wife, your Industry in your Profession, with her good Economy, will be a Fortune sufficient.

But if you will not take this Counsel, and persist in thinking a Commerce with the Sex inevitable, then I repeat my former Advice, that in all your Amours you should prefer old Women to young ones. You call this a Paradox, and demand my Reasons. They are these:

1. Because as they have more Knowledge of the World and their Minds are better stor’d with Observations, their Conversation is more improving and more lastingly agreable.

2. Because when Women cease to be handsome, they study to be good. To maintain their Influence over Men, they supply the Diminution of Beauty by an Augmentation of Utility. They learn to do a 1000 Services small and great, and are the most tender and useful of all Friends when you are sick. Thus they continue amiable. And hence there is hardly such a thing to be found as an old Woman who is not a good Woman.

3. Because there is no hazard of Children, which irregularly produc’d may be attended with much Inconvenience.

4. Because thro’ more Experience, they are more prudent and discreet in conducting an Intrigue to prevent Suspicion. The Commerce with them is therefore safer with regard to your Reputation. And with regard to theirs, if the Affair should happen to be known, considerate People might be rather inclin’d to excuse an old Woman who would kindly take care of a young Man, form his Manners by her good Counsels, and prevent his ruining his Health and Fortune among mercenary Prostitutes.

5. Because in every Animal that walks upright, the Deficiency of the Fluids that fill the Muscles appears first in the highest Part: The Face first grows lank and wrinkled; then the Neck; then the Breast and Arms; the lower Parts continuing to the last as plump as ever: So that covering all above with a Basket, and regarding only what is below the Girdle, it is impossible of two Women to know an old from a young one. And as in the dark all Cats are grey, the Pleasure of corporal Enjoyment with an old Woman is at least equal, and frequently superior, every Knack being by Practice capable of Improvement.

6. Because the Sin is less. The debauching a Virgin may be her Ruin, and make her for Life unhappy.

7. Because the Compunction is less. The having made a young Girl miserable may give you frequent bitter Reflections; none of which can attend the making an old Woman happy.

8thly and Lastly They are so grateful!!

Thus much for my Paradox. But still I advise you to marry directly; being sincerely Your affectionate Friend.

***

*Still, I’m not sure even all Ben’s sensible reasons together would be enough to compensate the loss of sensual pleasure accompanying the sight, scent and feel of the older woman’s body and odours.





Comments


  1. franklin- a player in the 18th century. amazing. some things never change.

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  2. on August 6, 2008 at 6:56 pm Patrick Bateman

    #2 seems to be what happens with disfigured girls too.

    I like this part.
    A single Man has not nearly the Value he would have in that State of Union. He is an incomplete Animal. He resembles the odd Half of a Pair of Scissars. If you get a prudent healthy Wife, your Industry in your Profession, with her good Economy, will be a Fortune sufficient.

    This rings true for those of us who desire marriage and children. A good man and a good woman become great together. I’m not yet married but I’m going on 6 years with my girlfriend and she’s definitely been a positive influence on my life. She keeps my life organized and generally takes great care of me. I was surviving on a diet of lucky charms and chees sticks when I met her, and slowly destroying the body I had spent years building. Her cooking was a godsend. Without her calming influence, I’d probably be killing hookers by now.

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  3. In other words: they don’t tell, they don’t swell, and they’re grateful as hell.

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  4. regarding only what is below the Girdle, it is impossible of two Women to know an old from a young one

    Today, unlike back in Ben’s time, there often is a way to tell the difference … an older woman is much more likely to have a Glorious Natural Pelt.

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  5. excellent, excellent.

    re #5:

    the lower Parts continuing to the last as plump as ever: So that covering all above with a Basket, and regarding only what is below the Girdle, it is impossible of two Women to know an old from a young one.

    this part is insane; i never knew that cellulite was a twentieth-century invention.

    i haven’t followed the original link, but how old does benji mean by “old”?
    * too old to produce children
    * too young to have saggy legs and ass
    hmmm.
    maybe they already had negligible senescence technology back then…?

    And as in the dark all Cats are grey, the Pleasure of corporal Enjoyment with an old Woman is at least equal, and frequently superior, every Knack being by Practice capable of Improvement.

    i guess i’m a dissident on this issue, but i agree with benji: young women may look, smell, and feel better, and quarters may bounce farther off their asses, but the probability that a hot coug will love raw fucking – and be animated, demonstrative, uninhibited, and generally good at it – is significantly greater.

    benji would be happy to know that, today, the choice is no longer mutually exclusive.

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  6. As true now as then. That Ben Franklin was one sage mother fucker. And a first class player.

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  7. on August 6, 2008 at 8:00 pm Peregrine John

    He even went to France, then (and later, betimes) the Grand Central of Playerdom, and took them by storm. Hell of a guy, and proof that you don’t have to be a looker to be a top-of-the-line player.

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  8. Pupu thinks that, in this letter, Ben has demonstrated eminent sensibility of an ultimate alpha male who puts his reproductive and other devices into their most efficient use. Unlike Leonardo Da Vinci who appeared to have had little sex but a few truly masterful pieces in his lifetime, or a rabbit who has a lot of sex and offsprings but produces no masterpiece, Ben had plenty of sex and offsprings, both legitimate and illegitimate, and invented some decent stuffs, such as a lighten rod. More importantly, he also joined the orgy that had given birth to a quite wonderful nation.

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  9. This must be the Golden Age of sexual innocence that they keep telling us existed before Playboy and YouTube.

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  10. Point by point commentary.

    1. Conversation with an attractive, cultured _somewhat_ older woman _is_ a pleasure not to be deprecated. However, physical attractiveness starts to seriously decline after 35, so the time window for this is really only 28-35. After that you might as well just have some port and discuss Milton with your oldguy English prof.

    (And I’m still not sure even very good conversation makes up for the sheer loss of physical attractiveness and girly enthusiasm.)

    2. True. I would say that women don’t tend to be all that helpful until they start to realize their looks are going, or they have kids. Tough to disentangle from the changes in brain structure and chemistry though.

    3. True.

    4. Sounds reasonable to me. Don’t have any experience to draw on though.

    5. False. Cellulite is the supreme enemy. Perhaps old Ben never did it with the lights on, but still.

    6. Now true only for religious girls. Seriously guys, sex, especially casual sex, with a girl from a conservative religious community will massively reduce her value on the marriage market. A really hot religious girl might get away with sex in a LTR, but it will still be a black mark. So, stick to the sluts, if you must. There are quite a few of them around these days, so there are no excuses.

    7. Still more or less true. You have a much larger chance of making a young girl unhappy than an older one.

    8. No experience to draw on here.

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  11. thursday, i agree with your clarifications to old ben’s reasons. i’ve even seen the beginnings of cellulite on the asses of 24 year olds. there’s no doubt an older woman’s ass, nether furrow, and legs will not look as ripe as a younger woman’s, and that this can be observed quite easily in a dimly lit room, and felt just as easily in a dark room. ben is off the mark in believing the two are indistinguishable from the girdle down, but close to a bullseye in recommending a basket over the head of the cougar.

    pupu are you the manolo? the roissy, he is humored like a child tickled in his belly region.

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  12. on August 6, 2008 at 10:28 pm Gunslingergregi

    In bens day though the woman were humping as in doing physical labor around the house or at work. Today a lot of jobs behind a computer. Probably will change body type somewhat.

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  13. Re: cellulite, do we know how old the guy is, and therefore who Ben meant by “young” and “older” women? Typical age at first marriage throughout Northern Europe over the past 5 or so centuries is about 28 for guys, 24 for girls (older in harsher circumstances, younger in better times).

    So maybe he’s contrasting 25 to 35 y.o.s, not 18 to 30. I’d say the prime years of the booty’s bubbliness are 22 to 24. I don’t know from 35 year-old ass, but Ben could’ve been right if this was the context.

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  14. In bens day though the woman were humping as in doing physical labor around the house or at work. Today a lot of jobs behind a computer. Probably will change body type somewhat.

    I would suspect that Ben Franklin was a player amongst women who had maids and other affiliated servants to provide for most tasks.

    What we really need to know is if menopause began earlier in the older days, and what constitutes an older woman for a man of Franklin’s era.

    She keeps my life organized and generally takes great care of me. I was surviving on a diet of lucky charms and chees sticks when I met her, and slowly destroying the body I had spent years building.

    For some reason, I feel that dependence on somebody in the way that you described is a sign of weakness, and should be remedied by solitude and self-improvement, not by becoming a leech on another productive and functioning person.

    OTOH, maybe may explain why women are avoiding betas and going for the non-broken, complete alpha males…

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  15. DA that is not a particularly accurate way of describing either betas or alphas.

    An Alpha may be unable to cook for himself and often act like a jerk, but be very charismatic and dynamic for the ladies. An example would be perhaps an indie band lead guitarist. Perhaps even with a drug or booze habit.

    A beta might well have lots of experience caring for himself, have “neat” habits and cook and clean for merely himself quite well, but have little social skill in convincing women of his social dominance. Or he might be prideful and simply be unwilling to bend.

    Alpha males are not “complete” nor are they “unbroken” merely more socially dominant, and often sacrifice other things, such as the ability to focus for long periods of time on abstract, non-people related tasks, and so on.

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  16. Of the course, not! the Pupu, she is a gal!

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  17. Hell of a guy, and proof that you don’t have to be a looker to be a top-of-the-line player.

    I’ve read two biographies of Franklin, and if recollection serves me, old Ben was in fact a “looker.” Certainly, he was renowned for his physical strength. I’m less certain, but still fairly confident, in claiming that he was about 6′ tall.

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  18. Johnny Five @ 5

    I’m with you, man. Nail on the head. Young girls look and feel better, but EVERYTHING else favors the well-maintained older woman….

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  19. No antibiotics in Ben’s day, so women probably ended up infertile much earlier in life from the STDs their husbands gave them.

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  20. on August 7, 2008 at 7:02 am Steve Johnson

    Great line from old playa Ben when he was in France.

    Some woman was making fun of his belly:

    “Benjamin, imagine what that belly would look like on a woman”

    “Madame, a half hour ago that belly was on a woman”

    Passing shit test – check
    Total frame dominance – check
    Awareness of the difference between what women want in men and what men want in women – check

    BF, 18th century player.

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  21. on August 7, 2008 at 2:49 pm Peregrine John

    Franklin … was renowned for his physical strength. I’m less certain, but still fairly confident, in claiming that he was about 6′ tall.

    Truly? Zounds.

    “Benjamin, imagine what that belly would look like on a woman”
    “Madame, a half hour ago that belly was on a woman”

    Wit like a freaking razor. The man is my hero.

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  22. 4 Peter

    an older woman is much more likely to have a Glorious Natural Pelt.

    An astute observation. An older woman who has maintained or exceeded her youthful assets, sexual eagerness and skill has no need to be unnatural. A natural woman is the best at any age. A natural woman is confident in her own skin regardless of whether it is perfect or not and she doesn’t try to be what she is not; a bald eagle.

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  23. “Because when Women cease to be handsome, they study to be good”…that would seem logical, but I don’t think it’s usually true. Generally as women age, they become much crabbier, and their interests become much narrower.

    Regardless of what a woman found exciting at 25, you can be pretty sure what her interests will be at 50…clothes, shoes, interior decorating, possibly some “craft” hobbies that don’t require much skill, and especially status gamesmanship with her friends.

    Not always true, but 75% of the time. This is what makes marriage/wife-selection so problematic for men. A woman of 25 and the same woman at 50 are practically members of two different species.

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  24. on August 14, 2008 at 5:31 pm Sara loves the internet

    This is fucking hilarious:

    http://au.video.yahoo.com/watch/2637492/7742519

    Don’t laugh, I’m almost in this situation myself.

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  25. Keep in mind that in Ben Franklin’s time :

    Most people did not live past the age of 45.

    Most women started having children by 18, and usually had many children.

    There was no electricity. Candles were the only form of lighting at night.

    There was no photography, television, etc. So no porn. Outside of a brothel, you could not see what a scantily clad woman looked like. In public, women were fully covered except their face.

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  26. […] mate choice decisions and judgments of the women they date. Even American legend Ben Franklin knew virgins were worth more than debauched women. Fuck that, women *themselves* know that virgins are higher value than […]

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  27. “So that covering all above with a Basket….”

    They didn’t have any paper bags back then!?

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  28. Life expectancy: To prevent future misunderstandings, Tood has been deceived by “average life expectancy”, which includes infant and childbirth deaths.

    If you live to age 10 as a Roman citizen, you are expected to live to age 50.

    If you live to age 10 as a white male in the United States in 1850, you live to age 58.

    1910, 66

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