Let’s not pretend that those pictures of Wendi Deng and an extremely fit young man, who we now know to be 21-year-old Hungarian model Bertold Zahoran, haven’t been preying on our minds a bit.
We know the official response: she’s old enough to be his mother; he’s 64 years younger than her ex, Rupert Murdoch (wow!) etc. And yet… In weak moments you can’t help thinking he is ridiculously good-looking and she – even under the unforgiving St Barts noonday sun – looks ridiculously good for her 48 years.
They both like going to museum openings and fundraisers, and have a mutual friend in Naomi Campbell, and really, who are we to judge?
Look at the pictures for long enough and you may conclude that Wendhoran (well, worth a try) are a thoroughly modern couple living by their own rules.
And, if you’re a fortysomething-plus female, you may find yourself thinking, “I would”. Definitely, given the right circs. I would pay no heed to all this toyboy tosh and dive right into the Hungarian mosh pit.
But ladies, a word before we take this any further. This fortysomething woman is Wendi Deng, the dragon lady with the martial arts skills, the looks of a Bond girl and the address book of a Sony exec. She might make it look easy, but it’s nothing of the sort.
So, if you are considering going for a young one, don’t do it if…
- You are not at ease wearing a white bikini (with or without beach negligee).
You don’t need to be comparably fit (that’s a physical impossibility) but you do need to be in excellent shape if you’re walking out with someone gorgeous and half your age. Otherwise – it’s very simple – everyone will think you are his mum. Or possibly gran.
Waitresses will give you a wink and say: “Aw, isn’t he a good boy?” Barmen will card him: “Unless Mum can vouch for you.” The clipboard Nazi outside the nightclub will drag him from behind the rope, hissing: “All right, Kim Cattrall, you’re putting off the kids.”
Good luck with laughing that off for the 100th time.
- You don’t like dancing to house music. Or…
You can’t face watching Twin Peaks all over again. You don’t take drugs all the time. You have no desire to go to Coachella. Or Burning Man. You haven’t got time for conspiracy theories. You find it depressing when people assume Hallelujah belongs to Alexandra Burke. You think it’s weird not to have a driving licence. Or a television. Or a bath. You like University Challenge. You have standard-issue body hair. (The younger ones are with John Ruskin on pubic hair.)
- You have 21-year-old sons and/or daughters.
No need to spell out why this would be awkward. Under 15 and they will accept your companion on a manny level. Maybe.
- He has a living mother.
Speaking for myself, if my 21-year-old stepson comes home with a Wendi I am going to be about as warm and welcoming as Princess Anne woken from her rest by hunt sabs. I’m taking her down. It is not going to be pretty.