M65 Dutch gent wants court to make him M45 for sake of sex appeal

Roland Heitink of Getty Images took iconic shot of future 49-year-old. But will he look as good at 50?Roland Heitink of Getty Images took iconic shot of future 49-year-old. But will he look as good at 50?

Feeling old? Wish you were 20 years younger? Well, you can hit the gym. Or do what Emile Ratelband did in Holland. You can ask a court to change your legal age.

Old Emile is 69 and wants to be declared 49.

Yeah, I thought it was fake, too. But lots of outlets are covering this — including HuffPost, whose weird-news writer David Moye lives a few minutes from me.

NPR’s headline goes straight for the jugular: “69-Year-Old Dutch Man Seeks To Change His Legal Age To 49.”

The story begins:

Emile Ratelband, a 69-year-old motivational speaker from the Netherlands, has petitioned a court for permission to change his legal age — by altering his birth certificate to show he was born 20 years later than he really was.

Ratelband argues that he feels two decades younger than he actually is — doctors told him he has the body of a younger man, he says. While in most cases that compliment is rhetorical, Ratelband is taking a more literal approach. He also says having a younger age on paper would give him a boost in life and on dating apps.

Transgender people around the world have fought long legal battles for the right to change their birth certificates to match their gender identity.

Where that is permitted, the legal requirements vary; in the Netherlands, transgender people need a statement from an expert affirming that they have a “permanent conviction” that their gender does not match what is on their birth certificates, and that they understand the repercussions of their decision.

Ratelband said: “When I’m 69, I am limited. If I’m 49, then I can buy a new house, drive a different car. I can take up more work. When I’m on Tinder and it says I’m 69, I don’t get an answer. When I’m 49, with the face I have, I will be in a luxurious position.”

Ratelband’s website says he has seven children and “a steady relationship with the woman of his dreams.” However, he told media outlets that he is dating and is seeking to have more children with surrogate mothers.

Ratelband’s website also says his “age focus is to turn at least 94 years old and to then leave this world healthy and with pleasure when it has become a better place for everyone.” He does not specify whether that “age focus” refers to his physical age or his emotional age.

The 69-year-old also spoke to The Washington Post and said he is not concerned that his comparison of an age change to a sex change may be offensive to transgender people. He called it a question of free will.

“Because nowadays, in Europe and in the United States, we are free people,” he told the Post. “We can make our own decisions if we want to change our name, or if we want to change our gender. So I want to change my age. My feeling about my body and about my mind is that I’m about 40 or 45.”

He wants to tell potential dating partners and clients that he is as young as he feels, not as old as he is.

“But I don’t want to lie,” Ratelband told the Post.

What’s not to like about this guy? I don’t know if he does track — or whether he’s related to a Dutch thrower named Mark Ratelband.

But I’m worried Emile will set a precedent if he prevails. WMA might be getting TUEs for age. Wait! This might benefit ME!

Stay tuned while I apply for M85 status. Medal podiums, here I come!

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About the Author

Ken Stone
Ken has followed track as an athlete, writer and webmaster since the late 1960s, and saw most sessions of track and field at the 1984 Los Angeles and 1996 Atlanta Olympics. He also attended the 1988, 1992, 2000, 2004, 2008 and 2012 Trials. He worked for 10 newspapers and now reports for Times of San Diego. Write him at TrackCEO@aol.com or kens@timesofandiego.com. Story tips always welcome!

9 Comments on "M65 Dutch gent wants court to make him M45 for sake of sex appeal"

  1. This man is both Dutch and mad. And 69!

  2. Emile, take it from me, in the US we have competitors in the 70-74 group who look 15 years younger than you do. In fact, we have one in the 80-84 group who puts you to shame for youthfulness. Yes, I’m responding to “When I’m 49, with the face I have…”

    I can only imagine the dismay that women experience after 10 minutes with you on what we in the US call a blind date. “Oh, I have to make a call, will you excuse me?” An hour later you finally admit to yourself that yet another one has gotten away. She’s gone, Emile; good for her.

  3. I’m not sure he will be quite so keen on the idea when the pension cheques stop arriving and all senior discounts get revoked.

  4. Michael Walker | November 9, 2018 at 6:59 am | Reply

    Mike W [no relation] & Peter make good points. Emile probably doe not do Masters. Dropping down four age groups would not be good. Maybe he can apply to be legally 45 for dating and also legally be 90 for Masters.

  5. Wow! finally someone has invented a hot tub time machine that actually works! I think we should all be able to change our legal birthday whenever we like. Foe example; online dating – Younger!, Social Security and Medicare- Older! Masters track – Older! Sorry, got to go , my high school class of 1977 is having a party … in 1977!

  6. His face looks good for 69. For 49? Not so much.

  7. He calls himself motivational speaker, but his main motivation, many people say, is to get media minutes. He succeeded quite well this week, world wide.

  8. And of course the idiot did not have legal succes: https://nos.nl/artikel/2261872-rechtbank-emile-ratelband-blijft-69-jaar.html

  9. Thank you, Weia, for reporting on this. In the US we have a slang term for people like Pretty Boy Emile: doofus. Of course, he’s only pretty in his own mind.

    Peter L. Taylor

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