Miss Cougar America Contest

Friends, this is big news. The first ever National Single Cougars Convention is coming up at the end of the month:

What: National Single Cougars Convention
When: Friday, August 28, 2009,  7:30 PM
Where: Dinah’s Garden Hotel
4261 El Camino Real
Palo Alto, CA

See the link below for the press release. There will be speeches, vendors, dancing, and revelry. The highlight of the evening will come when one cougar in attendance is crowned the very first Miss Cougar America.

Miss Cougar America Contest Featured at National Single Cougars Convention

Yep, cougar. As in cougar cougar. As in Mrs. Robinson cougar. Think Eartha Kitt in Boomerang or pretty much anything she did after “Batman.”

If you’re still not following me, a cougar is an older woman romantically involved with or pursuing a younger man. It’s all subjective of course but the contest guidelines require the cougar to be over forty and unmarried. The younger men are referred to by the convention promoters as cubs; their age is unspecified but I think at least five years younger is a generally accepted rule of thumb. I personally wouldn’t have chosen the term “cub” as I think it introduces an Oedipal element which is out of place. “Cougar bait” has enjoyed widespread usage but to me it’s too passive and doesn’t capture the reciprocity of the relationship. I’ll go on record here and suggest a new term for the males of the species: toms. Cougars and toms. When you hear it on “The View,” remember you heard it here first.

The idea of a cougar started I think as a bit of a mean joke. A caricature of a pathetic divorcée prowling bars and nightclubs, abusing alcohol and sex to fill a personal void. But guess what. It’s changing folks. The cougars don’t see themselves as a joke anymore. They see themselves as independent and fabulous and they’re looking for men who can keep up with them. They’ve embraced the word “cougar” and are shaping it in their image. They’ve reclaimed it.

Take the convention keynote speakers. She is a 50-something shamanic sex therapist (with great skin by the way). He is a tantric yoga instructor. They are a couple and there are 14 years between them. You’d best believe their connection is deeply spiritual. What’s a few years’ difference when you’re dancing with eternity?

This convention is just the beginning. Cougars are going mainstream. This past spring B-side cable brought us “The Cougar,” a “Bachelor”-style reality dating show. This fall ABC airs “Cougar Town” starring Courteney Cox. There are books, seminars, even a line of lingerie (or maybe not…ahead of its time?).

This convention and its crowning moment will mark a major cultural shift from which there will be no going back. I would love to go and witness history but as the following chart shows, I am somewhat out of the core demographic. If you go, let me know all about it.

Cougars Toms Me

You cougars out there, I salute you and say, “Go ahead!” And to the toms I say, “Go to school. Learn something.” Be safe, have fun, and let the opposites attract! rrrrRRRAWR!

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