For some reason I really don't quite understand, burlesque shows by senior citizens have now become a popular type of fund-raising performance. Don't get me wrong, I can appreciate the subversive humor of it. Almost everything in popular culture encourages the worship of youth and beauty, and the most common attitude to senior citizens is either pity or contempt. So why not turn the whole thing on its head, subverting all of the propaganda by staging a burlesque show of senior citizens?
Except that I'm not sure if that's the real idea behind this sort of performance. In a lot of societies, elders are especially valued for two reasons: they have the wisdom of a lot of life experience, and they preserve and pass on the memories of what previous generations lived like and what they thought about the world.
But none of that is relevant in this sick, sad, culture. Whenever older people are portrayed in a positive light in the popular media, it's always because they're either trying to do a rap song or play electric guitar or dance in a skimpy outfit or make lewd comments in a sitcom. In other words, they're valued only for pretending to be young and imitating the young. It's supposed to show that they're still “with it.” The complete lack of dignity doesn't seem to bother anybody.
So which one is it- a subversive parody of the worship of youth and beauty, or a degrading attempt to recapture lost youth? Either way, it's a sick, sad world!