Prowling for fresh young meat

Web sites characterize older women who date younger men as cougars on the chase.

Tracy Clark-Flory
May 26, 2006 12:38AM (UTC)

Today, Knight Ridder published a lightweight piece on older women dating younger men, which led us to, a site that aims to facilitate these hookups. In case you haven't heard, older women who date younger men have been popularly dubbed cougars; they come out at night, prowling bars for young men who are inebriated enough to take them home for the night. If you find this characterization as charming as I do, you'll love the Go Cougar site, which features the mug of a feral-looking, paradoxically young woman alongside an actual cougar. Also on the site you'll find a photo of two silver-haired ladies cozying up to a young man (the "Prey of the Month") with this caption: "Congratulations to Aaron! We love getting pictures of CIAs (Cougars in Action)."

According to Go Cougar, "A Cougar is a woman that is strong, knows her territory, and goes after her prey relying on experience to guide her. Cougars of the world are beginning to see that they are what men really want. Males seeking to spend time with Cougars are often called 'Hunters' or 'Prey.' Go Cougar seeks to facilitate meetings between these creatures."


The Knight Ridder article also threw us in the direction of a rich gold mine of laughs at, where older women are diligently categorized for the convenience of young suitors. The list is divided according to the pros and cons of dating older women and classifies them according to such original types as "bag lady," "the cougar," and "boy toy." On the off-chance you're like me and don't find these terms' definitions self-evident: Being a boy toy is a good thing; being a cougar, a bad thing, 'cause they might take advantage of unsuspecting young men, catching them "in the cougar's grip." Melissa LaRicca, AskMen's women's sexuality correspondent, offers this insight: "Older women have been dubbed 'cougars' for a reason: They hunt younger men." Good thing that Ask Men designated a woman for this task because, otherwise, some of these observations might be offensive! (Kidding.)

As nauseating as both sites are, I suppose that in a parallel universe, where sex is only about one-sided domination, there might be something almost refreshing about seeing women referred to as the hunters. But you won't find me celebrating.

Tracy Clark-Flory

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