It’s Official: I’m a Panther (sort of)

That’s what my ex, who was a number of years younger than me, said when I jokingly asked him if I was a cougar. He said cougars are women in their 40’s, so you must be a panther. Or maybe he said jaguar. Who cares; all three are sleek, sexy, fast cats! I didn’t take it seriously anyway, since I don’t have a penchant for younger men. In fact, I’d prefer a peer, but as I get older, so many men my age remind me of … my grandfather. I don’t just mean looks, because I’m not what I once was either. I also mean attitude.

Anyway, awhile back, I attended (‘anonymous literary event.’) Currently single and always interested, I scanned the room for appropriate partners. There were a couple couples. A few men who were the wrong size or hair color. A woman dressed kind of like an older sexy librarian. A woman dressed kind of like a little girl. A young couple who seemed more interested in making out. A young loner. A cat. I sighed and turned my attention to the readings.

Most people read poetry. Good poetry, too. So I felt a little self-conscious when I read from my blog post Oh Dude! Don’t get me wrong, it’s a good story. But it’s humorous. Just a tad out of place amidst powerful writing about things like child abuse and existential angst. I noticed it didn’t inspire as many giggles as usual. But apparently it inspired something.

After the readings, I chatted a bit. Drank a little wine. Complimented a few people on their work. Petted the cat. As I was thanking our host and preparing to leave, the young loner was standing nearby. It would have felt rude to just ignore him, so I struck up a conversation. He asked for my card.

About a week later, I received an email: “Hi Lynda, we met at (‘anonymous literary event.’) I was the young buck in the leather jacket. How are you?” I was curious as to what he wanted. Writing tips? Friendship with a wise sophisticate? He couldn’t possibly be interested in me … sexually … could he? Well, my reading had been the story of a fantasy about a younger man. The irony was that it was completely fictitious.

I told him that I was busy finishing my semester, which was true. Another week went by. I submitted my grades.

Then another email: “Will you be in need of an alcoholic beverage in the near future? I go very well with a drink.” Clever. With classes done, I was feeling free. I responded the only way I could. “You’re so perceptive,” I wrote back with a smile.  There are worse ways to spend an afternoon than in flirtatious communion with a charming young man across a vodka martini (shaken, not stirred).

That night I was celebrating at a club with some friends when I received a text from Young Buck. Apparently he was also out drinking with comrades and his thoughts had returned to me.

May I be bold and ask to see you tonight?

     May I be bold and ask what your interest is?

You play coy very well, darling. Ok then, just some stimulating conversation, of course.

     Am I being coy? Or just waiting for you to play your hand?

Admit it, you like that I’m clawing at your door like a cat in heat.

     OMG, 0-75 in under a minute, Mr. Mustang.

Well, you’re the one driving the stick.

     So I gather you want to fuck an older woman?

(pause while considering how to answer this question)

Lynda, I don’t mean to cause you distress, nor to objectify you as an older woman. I am merely intrigued by your sensual nature. If our interaction leads to your bedroom…

     (silence, elevated heart rate, slightly heavy breathing)

…then I will fuck your brains out.    

OK.  Maybe we overdid the metaphors.  And maybe it would make a better story if I had agreed. But while Robin Thicke says you know you want it, Louis CK tells me I should hardly go out on a date with a man, let alone invite one over late at night when we’re both under the influence. Besides, I’m not what I once was, and I get tired.

Long story short, we did soon get together. I found out that he knows his way around a … room. Also that I’m not that tired. At the start I joked, “Hang on, I’m trying to think whether I have any lingerie that completely covers my body.” He stopped me, took my face in his hands and said, “You are a beautiful, sensual woman. You have nothing to be embarrassed about.” That was a very freeing moment. (Men of all ages: Take note!)

I don’t like to kiss and tell. Well, only to my closest friends. And you’ll become one of them when I publish my memoir in progress. But here and now I’ll only say this. He was aggressive. Yet tender. And when I told one friend a particularly juicy detail, her response was, “OMG, he DOES know how to ____ _ _____!”  We also talked. Quite a bit. And laughed. Quite a lot.  Non, je ne regrette rien.

Interesting that sometime later, I woke from a dream to a very unusual occurrence. A poem in my head:

No!  Don’t send me a boy.
His skin is too fresh,
not seasoned.

My subconscious spoke. So while Young Buck remains a fond memory, I’m still looking for what I described in my story Jungle of the Heart: “…a man with gray in his beard who will look into my eyes and see worlds.”

Let me add, and one who has a little seasoning to him.

Sean Connery young and old

In Licking the Spoon, my book in progress on food, sex and relationship, I reveal what only an experienced woman can – the exciting features of men at different ages!


188 thoughts on “It’s Official: I’m a Panther (sort of)

  1. “Men of all ages, take notes!” I am! A very “interesting” read… out of the articles I have read so far this one is the most interesting.


  2. The whole time I was reading this I had a smile on my face. I probably looked weird, since I was in the Library with tons of people around me, but your blogs are such a fun read. I think it was courageous of you to explore your “panther” side and not distant yourself from new encounter, for I too wouldn’t generally take interest in a younger man, and when I see myself in my 40s or 50s I would agree with you and think I’d find myself more focused on men, not boys, who are handsome, not hot, have a thing called maturity that will allow themselves to fall in love and rid themselves of that silly game of cat and mouse we all play in our 20s. But since you allowed yourself to open up to this “young buck” I need to know was there a second date or did you just end it like that?


    • We’ve had a few fun texts, but that was pretty much it – an exploration on both our sides. I know I will run into him again, though, and I look forward to it – not for more “young buck” but just a laugh about a fun,hot and tender experience we shared.


  3. Your story was very interesting. I wanted to read more because I honestly felt that I was reading like, Fifty Shades. I hope that you find Mr. Right soon.


  4. The exchange of text messages made me laugh! He seems very witty. I love how you debunk the misconception that only teens and young adults send flirtatious messages, because I am sure it happens throughout all ages! Great post as always!



  5. Such a great story, really had me intrigued!!! The texts were so straight forward which kept me wanting more and to know what happened next. You are an amazing writer and so courageous with going out of your comfort zone, hopefully one day I can be like that. Such a great blog, I LOVEDDDD IT!!!!!!


  6. This article was awesome!! When I saw the title I was hoping it would talk about the whole “cougars” word and it was much more lol I too have had those moments where I’ve realized I need a man and not a boy. Im 27 and I’ve had my fair share of young boys and but more recently I dated someone who was 7 years older than me and man was it an experience. It’s so very true to say “you don’t know what you got till it’s gone”. It took someone older to show me what it’s like to have something meaningful and that handles their business. Nowadays I am just not interested in something not worth my effort, and lately all these “youngins” seem interested in one thing and it’s so frustrating. I swear if one more young dude says the wrong thing to me I might just swear off guys in general because “ain’t nobody got time for that” lol


  7. This was indeed a romantic story that also ends with a degree of excitement ! XD However, I couldn’t help but wonder about the second to last line “…a man with gray in his beard who will look into my eyes and see worlds.”…which was beautiful by the way. Did this develop due to your relationship with your ex, whom you have mentioned to be quite a few years younger? I hope you don’t find this to be a rude question. It’s just that I dated a younger man before and it didn’t end in good terms and that quote just seems to capture what I felt then so perfectly.. in a sense.


  8. What a nice intro (as this was my first pick of the selection) to the personal life of well rounded and exciting woman. I think the text message exchange would have driven me to his door- a man who plays with words should always play with me. ;]


  9. This is great! I hope I’ll be just as much of jaguar as you! Tyler, frank, and I read this post together and giggled throughout the whole story. I loved this!


  10. Wow, professor this was an intriguing and magnificent story :)! I really enjoyed this story as well as making me laugh, what i can say about this is that love has no age, as well as my self i have a partner in which she is a couple of years older than I am.
    Interesting how great of a connection You and Buck had and the way that he was very adoring and nice to you was just awesome!
    I can really say that i enjoy all your stories as well as your posts!


  11. I don’t think it’s the age in particular of the man… I believe it’s the maturity and the level of respect in his approach to a woman. Men of all ages know exactly what they want in a woman.. It’s the woman that has to have confidence in herself and her ability to tame her inner kitty ((not to be confused with her kitty in a sexual manner)).. There’s nothing wrong with being a cougar, panther or a jaguar. I sometimes find myself interested in a young hottie. However, I find that young hotties want a “young woman” as a companion. It is rare to find a young and mature man that is ready to settle with a “seasoned woman” that has children the same age as him. In my experience, being a panther only satisfies your sexual needs and nothing else. If a woman is in a proper state a mind and can engage in a sexual relationship with “no strings attached”, then kudos to her!! I like to see myself as a born again virgin.. With that being said, I proudly hang up my panther trophy in the hopes to find a well mannered man my age that knows what he wants in a woman and knows exactly how to get it!!!


  12. This is such an amazing story. I would like to comment and say that I thought this was very romantic piece. I really enjoyed the dialogued and can tell with your excitement toward the end of the post!


  13. When he said “You are a beautiful, sensual woman. You have nothing to be embarrassed about.” was the best part. More guys these days have to be like him


  14. I find it quite intriguing the way the communication started out. He was just some random guy that you struck a conversation with. Then it blossomed into something else. It’s almost like young couples today, how they play hard to get then all of a sudden get right into it. No matter what the age is we all want some loving!


  15. I really enjoyed the story, mostly because of those text messages. I wish I could flirt like that, unfortunately I am a complete novice when it comes to flirting.


  16. *Sigh* memories like these are wonderful~ They’re like a Fairy tale. It’s so dream like but it stays as a fond memories later in the years. Thank you for this. Nudged a fond memory of mine. 🙂


  17. I loved this little story, it was hilarious! 🙂 The text chat was probably my favorite. Can all guys learn from him when he said “You are a beautiful, and sensual woman. You have nothing to be embarrassed about”? Hmm, would you ever tell how much older you were than the “young buck”? I’m sorry, I just a bit curious lol 🙂


  18. Oh my gosh!! I was on the edge of my seat! Have you ever considered writing erotic romance novels? Seriously. You have a gift! If you used this encounter and made a whole book out of it, I’m sure it’d be the next 50 Shades of Grey. Perhaps even better!


  19. first initial thought after reading the first few lines was how (being 19 but being into guys older usually at least mid 20’s) I feel the same way! of course I don’t think of my grandpa but I always remember they are basically my uncles and older brothers age. its such a mood killer haha


  20. this was a great read! because ive been tricked by cougers and panthers alike lol. I dated a girl who lied about her age by about 7 years lol so she was 28 in my eyes n she ended up pushing 34. the experience was great and caused me to pursue older women. realizing the vast difference in maturity was a powerful factor. I see the side of you that would always keep the spark so im glad you are happy even through ther many battles youve had. your an inspiration in many ways. thanks for sharing, michael.


  21. This post is one of my favorites because for a second, I forgot that you were my professor and I felt like I was reading a prelude to something like Fifty Shades. Nevertheless I still have respect and this story is definitely a fun one to tell. I wonder what he DOES know what/how to do!
    Also, having a cougar/panther/jaguar for a professor is something most won’t admit but it’s pretty dang cool.


  22. I completely love this article! I loved how open you were to explain your ecpierence with this and how comfortable you are with it.


  23. Wow, I really was not expecting such a story. Great job in taking responsibility and not do anything drastic under the influence of alcohol.


  24. The title of the article caught my attention, but as soon as I started reading I was mesmerized by the way you two replied to each other.


  25. I’ve been called a milf for many years… at 37 I believe I’m closer to a cougar. I like younger men. Not teenage young but still younger than myself. I have a hard time dating men my age or older. They are just not as fun and the older men don’t take direction in the bedroom very well. Younger guys are more eager to please and learn.


    • Cougar or milf, the point is that if you’re happier dating younger men (and as long as they’re legal), and they with you, that’s what matters. I would actually prefer men my own age because we share a similar cultural perspective, but like you, I find many men my age have kind of given up on having fun.


  26. Well I feel better now that at least I didn’t remind you of your Grandfather! But I definitely haven’t given up on having fun, I just know it won’t be with you.


  27. It’s nice to hear or read that any age past 40 doesn’t mean that sex stops. Thanks Professor for informing all readers that all ages go through the same thinking when it comes to a potential mate.


  28. A lot of people believe age can be a big “no no” in relationships. I believe that age is just a number and you can fall in love with anyone that you choose!


  29. Lynda, thanks for sharing! Love how open you are about your sexuality. I although have never dated anyone younger than me I have wondered what it would be like. What factors are important to one that is engaged in a relationship with someone much younger than she?


    • Thank you! In this case, I knew this was not going to be a relationship – the age difference was just too great. But I have had a couple of longer relationships with men 10-12 years younger than myself. In most ways they were no different than ones with men my age, but both people need to remember that your perspectives are different. For example, when I was in college, they were still little boys! And when I was secure in my career, they were still struggling to build one. Finally, the differences in fertility – which was one reason why I could not conceive when I wanted to.


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