Older than you think

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I was watching Mission: Impossible III last night on Netflix (my review: meh), when I wondered: Just how old is Tom Cruise, anyway?

If I were guessing, I’d say he looks about 40, but then I realized he’s been around forever. Risky Business came out in ’83, which was — holy cow! — 29 years ago. So, I checked Wikipedia, and it says Tom Cruise is 50.

That means Tom Cruise is older than Iron Man (who first appeared in Marvel Comics’ Tales of Suspense in March 1963) and the ZIP Code (introduced in July 1963). It also means he’s eligible for the AARP discount at Denny’s.

That (and the fact I have a birthday coming up) made me wonder who else is older than you’d think:

Gwen Stefani (No Doubt): 43
Older than: Earth Day (April 1970), “Monday Night Football” (September 1970) and PBS (October 1970)
Eligible for Denny’s senior discount: No

Jim Parsons (Sheldon on “The Big Bang Theory”): 39
Older than: People magazine (March 1974), ABBA (won the Eurovision song contest with “Waterloo” in April 1974) and the Universal Product Code, also known as the barcode (June 1974)
Eligible for Denny’s senior discount: No

Billy Joe Armstrong (guitarist and lead singer of Green Day): 40
Older than: Watergate (the scandal broke in June 1972), The Godfather (released in March 1972) and Roe v. Wade (January 1973)
Eligible for Denny’s senior discount: No

Jon Stewart (host of “The Daily Show”): 49
Older than: The instant replay (first used during the Army-Navy game in December 1963), “Doctor Who” (November 1963) and the U.S. surgeon general’s warning that smoking may be hazardous to your health (January 1964)
Eligible for Denny’s senior discount: Will be, on Nov. 28

Sandra Bullock: 48
Older than: The Sound of Music (the movie, opened in March 1965), the first skateboard championship (May 1965) and “Star Trek” (September 1966)
Eligible for Denny’s senior discount: No

Samuel L. Jackson: 63
Older than: The People’s Republic of China (proclaimed in October 1949), the Emmy Awards (January 1949) and Nineteen Eighty-Four (published in 1949)
Eligible for Denny’s senior discount: Oh, yeah

Katy Perry: 28
Older than: Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? (the video game, released in 1985), New Coke (April 1985) and the Ford Taurus (December 1985)
Eligible for Denny’s senior discount: No

William Shatner (actor, singer): 81
Older than: Dick Tracy (October 1931), Radio City Music Hall (December 1932) and King Kong (opened in March 1933)
Eligible for the Denny’s senior discount: As far as I’m concerned, Shatner can have anything he wants.

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82 thoughts on “Older than you think

  1. What about all three members of the rock band ‘Rush’? They are 59, 59, and 60 respectively. And they can still sell out the big venues. These guys are old enough to have three generations of fans in the same family, and have been in the same job for pretty much the same job for their whole working lives. Awe-inspiring.

  2. Freshly Pressed usually features stuff that is less exciting than the STD brochures at a local clinic, but this time, they got it right. Well done. I’m hoping Denny’s will still be around when I hit discount eligibility.

    • Thanks, Amiable! Shatner’s my role model when it comes to getting older. I have no idea what he’s like off camera, but on camera, it looks like he’s in great shape and having an awful lot of fun.

  3. Unlike others, I am younger than I look due to premature blazingly white hair (think Paula Deen but WHITER). I got a few senior discounts long before I was eligible – I never asked but people assumed. I am older than, well, the first presidential press conference (Feb, 1955), but younger than, say, dirt.

    • I have never been a fan of Tom Cruise, so I’ve been wishing he’d retire since ’83, but every once in a while, he’ll do something interesting, and I’ll think, “Hang on. Let’s see where he’s going with this.”

  4. I love to see some actually aging actors on screen like it happens in French and British movies often…it makes me feel less sorry for the guys in post production, who got to polish all these faces up frame by frame…

    • There are plenty of those, but they’re considered character actors. I think if you’re a star, you’re under a lot of pressure ot stay young forever, which simply isn’t doable.

    • I looked him up because I just recently discovered “The Big Bang Theory” (OK, so I don’t watch a lot of TV), and I was like, “Where have I seen this guy?”

  5. dustindalo

    So now it’s all of a sudden really popular to check out how old people are and laugh at said old people? Or maybe I misunderstood something as usual. Also, you should of totally included Jim Carrey and included “allrighty then!” in the end. Or not. Whatever.

    • Remember: She’s a pop star, so looking young is part of her job. If you had her money and hours a day to spend working out, plus a personal chef to prepare healthy food so you didn’t have to eat from the vending machine or drive-through, you’d probably look that young, too.

  6. This is a great read and it make me think of this and i had to dig it up!
    [BlindGossip] In the late 00′s, his face was starting to sag and lose its elasticity. His face pretty much fluttered in the breeze as he ran. He had lines around his eyes and bags under them.

    Now, frankly, this is not a big deal. All faces age. Really! But this ego maniacal liar wants you to believe that he is no mere mortal, and that his looks are all natural because he lives such an extraordinary life. That’s right, People! He’s not like you! He works hard to stay young! He has never had plastic surgery and never will! Or so he claims.

    Here’s the truth: He had a nose job when he was in his teens (he had the bridge thinned out). He had his teeth completely redone (although we wouldn’t include teeth in the plastic surgery category). He had his eyeballs replaced. He had a mid-section face lift and lower blepharoplasty (eye job) around 2009. He is currently holding off on upper eye work (because that would drastically change his look). Now he just has regular injections of Botox and Restylane to freeze things up and plump them out. Hey, it’s good work, he doesn’t look “done”, and his face settled in nicely six months after the plastic surgery. But it’s still plastic surgery. And he is still a liar.

    • Here’s the thing: If you’re a movie star, looking good is your job. If you were a movie star, you could spend hours a day in the gym and afford the most subtle plastic surgeons, too.

  7. So when you say you have a birthday coming up, would that be sooner than a bread box ? Happy birthday in advance, and from the looks of it, this was (deservedly) Freshly Pressed, so congratulations!

    • Shatner is famous for talk-singing badly, but a few years ago, Ben Folds produced an album for Shatner called “Has Been” that miraculously wasn’t awful. The best track is a cover of the Pulp song “Common People,” with Joe Jackson on guest vocals. It’s pretty awesome (for some reason, the song doesn’t start until the 6-second mark):

  8. Movie stars and other famous people get a year every time we “mortals” do, but they can’t afford to look like they do because they have to trade on their looks. Congrats on FP and your B-day — it should give us all encouragement that Shatner is still very much in demand at his ripe ole age!

    • I saw him on a talk show a couple years, and he was goofing around and fell out of his chair on purpose, and I’m like, “He can’t do that! He’s almost 80 years old!” But of course he can do that. He’s William Shatner!

      • I agree completely…it’s fun to see him remaining in his element. Any Trek fan like myself can enjoy watching him in anything. But I’ll admit too that I haven’t looked him up in awhile and didn’t realize he was that old. You’d never know it…

  9. I liked the group of folks you picked. Gwen and William are two of my faves. Shatner does look like he is having a great deal of fun, which is one of the reasons I enjoy him so much. Hope you had a happy birthday. You don’t look a day older than the Emmy Awards. I mean New Coke. You don’t look a day older than New Coke.

  10. Some of this makes me feel old since I am nearing that discount. I like to look at the back of the television guide each week where they have birthdays of television stars to see who is old and who is not.

  11. Ghost Writer

    Way back in the good old days, I always had to prove my age (over 18 over 21 etc.) Now a few years ago at the local pool I was asked if I wanted to join the over 50s swim group……shock horror……….I had a long way to go before that particular number…still the attendant did say they should have gone to specsavers!

  12. Wow. Yeah, some of those people do not look that old at all. Except for Katy Perry. I would have guessed she was older than 28. She just seems like she’s had a lot of, um, experiences, that make her seem older. I mean hell, anyone who has to live with Russell Brand would age at least 10 years in my opinion.

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