Jeff Bezos and girlfriend Lauren Sanchez. Photograph / laurenwsanchez, Instagram
It’s a kind of photos. As soon as seen, close to unimaginable to wipe out of your thoughts. The portrait exhibits the 59-year-old tech billionaire Jeff Bezos splayed out within the entrance seat of a pick-up and enfolded
within the bosom of his fiancée, the pneumatic newscaster turned helicopter pilot turned philanthropist Lauren Sánchez. They need the world to share their love.
The picture comes courtesy of Annie Leibovitz, within the newest situation of US Vogue. It accompanies a sprightly profile of Sánchez, who has been given the complete Vogue therapy with a shiny interview and vogue shoot.
It’s the look of Bezos, nevertheless, halfway via the story, that takes the breath away. The as soon as shy, considerably geeky chap behind the world’s strongest retailer has recently taken on the looks of a third-tier motion man. Right here, he’s captured at his most bionic: biceps bulging via his tight-fit tee. He wears denims, similar to the frontiersman of yesterday. In lieu of a hairline, he has donned a Stetson hat.
As Chloe Malle writes of his transformation: “It’s as if he’s emerged from his chrysalis, a swole monarch, now not Amazon CEO (a job he ceded in 2021) however an empty nester who’s venturing not solely into the Adriatic however into outer area.”
Bezos shouldn’t be the primary man to have loved a post-divorce transformation: he parted ways from MacKenzie Scott, his spouse of 25 years and mom of his 4 kids, in 2019. Within the years since, his physique has metamorphosed in tandem along with his new passion: maybe the adrenaline of ardour has made his six-pack pop? Taking a look at his present costume, one considers the legions of males who’ve pulled from the Wild West to lend themselves extra manly cool. No less than Bezos has some declare to be a cowboy: he was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
For all of the billionaire trappings and area equipment, nevertheless, Bezos reveals each symptom of the person trapped in a mid-life malaise. The sports activities automotive could have been upgraded to an area rocket, however the different expressions of this new look are a textbook model of a really primary disaster. There’s the lusty girlfriend, who insists, “He’s the lifetime of the celebration … ” There’s the brand new ardour for ice-scooping and making margaritas (what’s it about fiftysomething males and drinks?). There’s the considerably awkward, maybe unintended sexual innuendoes: “I used to be going to provide you a salted rim,” he tells the interviewer throughout one cringe-making change.
In the meantime, a look at @jeffbezos on Instagram finds him sharing his love of “loopy disco” events alongside maternal healthcare, conservation and different private philanthropies. Final weekend he staged an all-star engagement celebration, hosted by Diane von Furstenberg and Barry Diller, and attended by Oprah Winfrey, Barbra Streisand, Bob Iger and Scooter Braun. Apparently this was only a taster for the massive sixtieth in January, after which he plans to tie the second knot.
The life and soul of the celebration? A dude simply residing His Greatest Life? To me, the sheer vitality required of Bezos to inform everybody of the good time he’s having reads as an epic cry for assist. Give the person a snowglobe and a mansion, and one imagines he’ll be mumbling for Rosebud and shedding single tears. Within the meantime, he wears the mantle of superstar powerhouse and sparkle-maker about as comfortably as he wears these heart-shaped disco shades.
Maybe I’m being mean-spirited? Perhaps Bezos is the expression of a extremely fascinating late-onset male virility that I’m failing to detect. Do different fiftysomething males have a look at Bezos with admiration, and need that they too might expertise the Sánchez impact?
This week has additionally discovered us watching one other fiftysomething shuffle again into the general public eye. Lord Dave Cameron has been plucked from the post-leadership penumbra to assume a ministerial role. Males appeared to please in his look. Perhaps his everyman accessibility is extra on level. Take this gushing evaluate by Every day Mail columnist Quentin Letts: “Walnut-veneer suntan, salon-schmoozer crows ft, the receding hair now just a little greyer: he’s ageing like Fonseca classic port.”
It appears males have two routes when confronted with ageing. Battle it with every little thing of their arsenal, à la Bezos, or lean into it like Cameron and go full elder statesman. Cameron is carrying a minimum of an additional stone of dietary indulgence, his swimsuit sleeves by no means fairly appear to suit appropriately and he nonetheless lopes round like a sixth-form prefect after a fast smoke behind the cricket shed, however he elicits an odd admiration from different males. The Telegraph columnist Iain Dale might hardly include himself with the announcement that “Daddy’s house”. Even a solidly anti-Tory colleague admitted a purring admiration for Cameron’s reappearance as a grandee.
Do you need to be a Bezos or a Cameron? I don’t suppose one actually will get to decide on. Limitless riches can ward towards the ageing course of, however that’s no assure it can purchase you any style. I would favor to not rail towards the inevitable to such a level that it turned my persona. However if you happen to’re on the lookout for an actual “Fonseca classic port” for steering, I might direct you to at least one Mark Ruffalo.
- Jo Ellison is the FT’s HTSI editor
Written by: Jo Ellison
© Monetary Instances