Roseanne, the Pirate Queen

By Barr, Roseanne | Newsweek, November 28, 2011 | Go to article overview

Roseanne, the Pirate Queen


Barr, Roseanne, Newsweek


Byline: Roseanne Barr

Sure, menopause is hell. It saps your sex drive and puffs your ankles. But when it's over, you're calmer and more connected. Embrace it, sisters!

Madonna is 53. But don't worry-she still isn't acting her age. While celebrating in the Hamptons, the Material Girl was spotted smooching her 24-year-old boyfriend, Brahim Zaibat on the beach. The two met after Zaibat performed at the launch of Madonna's Macy's clothing line last year.--Mike Krumboltz, Yahoo, Aug. 16, 2011

When first I read the above paragraph, I thought that maybe I had changed in a very profound way, because I found myself feeling sorry for Madonna, rather than judgmental and resentful. I also was not ready to pull off the head of the author of this trite journalistic piece and shit down his neck. I had mellowed, I realized. Menopause had indeed made me into a nicer person.

I think Madonna will one day say the same about herself, if she makes it through the rough waters that lie ahead of her, those premenopausal years--the last chance one has to avoid the realization that sooner, not later, life will even the score, and it will go against you.

Despite the Botox, spas, and youthful boyfriends, and about the same time you acquire gray pubes, a clothing line not with Dolce & Gabbana, but at Macy's, will be all the haute couture your dusty old brand can muster. No one gets out of this shit alive, hon.

Madonna will not like it when her body, which has always been part of her art, gets a mind of its own and takes over her tightly knit daily shedule, as the posh pronounce it. But, girl, don't even sweat it--if you can help not sweating during the "Pause." Most likely, as your vaginal walls recede and become paper thin, rendering your sexual passage dry as a bone, and while gravitational pull moves your once jaunty pockets of stored fat ever downward into your ankles and feet, making them really puffy, the sweating will add the coup de grace to the whole mess, rendering you wet where you used to be dry and dry where you used to be wet. After a little while, the blessed memory lapses will make it so that you will hardly remember what was wet, and that really helps a lot with the depression. Madonna is 53, and I am 59. Fifty-three is the year when everything starts to go to crap physically, starting with your material-girl parts. In other words, 53 is The Apex year--I hear that her new album is her best work ever, I now say, admiringly!

After menopause, I discovered the joy of drinking wine, and of sinking deeply into writing and time alone. These things replaced the sex drive I had thoroughly cruised down as a youth, exploring one dead end, detour, and unpaved dirty road after another. I have refused to take the libido-restoring male hormones constantly proffered me by this culture and Suzanne Somers and her hordes of apologists and postmenopausal cougars. Being 53 and having sex with folks in their early 20s is just so Norma Desmond. There, I said it. I can dig the dead writer in the pool thing, though.

I am more of a badger. The sex drive is that dark continent that I see now receding in the distance, behind me and the ship that has sailed with me at its helm--and I am no longer feeling mixed about seeing it go; I am actually relieved. It produced so much pain, really, so much wear, tear, and worry, not to mention the work, and sweat of raising the kids that come from it, who roll their eyes at you when you say things like these things I am saying in this article. My three daughters are approaching middle age themselves, the age when the libido of a woman speeds up for a time, just before it has a stroke, goes blind, and dies.

I am old now: gray, wrinkled, tired, and bloated, and my joints ache, too. But I am ready to come into my full destiny--as my childhood dreams predicted--as a Neo-Amazonian Pirate Queen of my own vessel: firing cannonballs at the worldwide culture of patriarchy in the name of all that does not suck. …

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