Cruise Line Throw Cougars Overboard!

Hi Everyone!

Recently I was at a friends home, playing Bid Whist and the topic of “Cougars” came up. Not the furry, four – legged kind, the human, female, walk on two legs kind. For those of you who are not aware, a “Cougar” is an older woman who dates much younger men.

Sitting in the room were several generations of women. The youngsters were at a table playing “Spades”. Their age range was from 26 – 39. They quickly spoke up that there is no way they would date a man that was younger then they. The “Grown Folks” as we call ourselves, were at the Bid Whist table and ranged from 45 – 65 years of age. We quickly let them know that a little young blood can put a spark in a mature engine. The room went up in serious and sometimes heated discussion.

The topic came up when I mentioned to the group a story Ja’Vonne and I talked about on our radio program, The Traveling Eye on

According to TIME’s Tim Padgett, Carnival Cruise lines has decided not to book anymore cougar themed group cruises. In December of 2009, a “Cougar Group” set sail on the Carnival Elation for a 3 day cruise from San Diego to Ensenada, Mexico and back.

Carnival Elation

The older women (Cougars) booked the cruise to meet and hang out with younger men (Cubs). When I heard that Carnival wasn’t going to book any more cougar themed groups, I immediately thought that the event must have turned out to be a “Cougars Gone Wild” type of cruise. Young, gorgeous, washboard stomach guys chasing 40, 50 and 60 year old women around the deck and dousing them in tanning oil.

Carnival Cruise Lines said that the group of 300 plus wasn’t wild at all. The wildest event was the typical cruise ship hot tub party. The guests weren’t overly loud or disturbed other passengers. So what was the problem?

Tim reported that Carnival wouldn’t discuss the ban on the Cougar groups but sent an email statement stating that the cruise line had, “made the decision not to allow any future groups to be booked and marketed on our ships under this them. It was a business decision.”

There are travel experts who feel that Carnival is planning to market itself as a cruise line that promotes family fun and wholesomeness. The cougar groups may give the image of the cruise line being a floating girls gone wild party ship. ( Hey, it popped in my mind).

As we discussed the article during our card game, the question came up, “What would happen if the group wanted to buy out entire ship. Would Carnival turn them down?” I am sure Carnival or any other cruise line wouldn’t turn down the money. It is, however, a different set of circumstances when you book the entire ship versus when you are just a small group among many passengers. While people are more accustomed to seeing a 60 year old man with a 20 or 30 something young woman on his arm, some folks may be offended (I don’t have a clue why) or feel uncomfortable watching a 20 or 30 year old young man rub suntan lotion on a 50 or 60 year old woman. Sound like a double standard to you?

As I won my five, no-trump, downtown (yes, I am good), I informed the group that even though Carnival Cruise lines has thrown Cougar groups overboard, Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise lines brought in the life boats. Cougars and Cubs will be setting sail in May and in December of 2010.

If you happen to be on board and see a group of beautiful, highly motivated, intelligent Black women engrossed in a bid whist game, pull up a chair and sit down. GROWL!

Until next time, keep your EYE to the sky!

Bonnie DeShong
Co-host The Traveling Eye – www.wvon