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RANCE has a new president. Macron.”

“Macron who?”

“The one with a wife who’s much older than himself.”

“Oh, yes, him.”

President Emmanuel Macron, 39, is now known all over the world, and not just in his own country, as France’s youngest president, also as the one who just happens to have a first lady who’s 25 years his senior. Whatever label he wears – centrist, left of center, liberal, pro-European Union – women of a certain age are looking at him as a man after their own heart. In that sense, he is an authentic new “new wave” feminist. In the age of botox and Barbie dolls, Brigitte Trogneux is telling grandmothers of the world to stop measuring the age gap and start counting 60 as the new 35.

Theirs may be a May-December affair but nothing in the civil or church law forbids it. It may be rare like the occasional blue moon and as such arouse curiosity (does she look her age?), speculation (do they look good together?), suspicion (who seduced whom?). But while most men of Macron’s age fantasize about women half their calendar years if not younger, half the world (I presume) are celebrating l’affaire Macron-Trogneux as the romance phenomenon of the year. In unions like theirs, it is safe to assume, viewed from the outside, that the younger partner has a lot to learn from the older woman, even as he is also eager to serve her in every way. In his mind and enamored heart, would it be less a matter of serving her, than it is of doing everything to please her?

In Monsieur Macron’s case, he was willing to be “exiled” to Paris from their town when his parents uncovered his “scandalous” affair with his drama teacher. He was 15, she was 40, a married woman with three kids. He waited for her for 14 years, marrying her when he turned 29 in 2007.

When they stood on the stage last week to claim victory, Brigitte was with her children and seven grandchildren. L’amour, c’est magnifique. (Jullie Y. Daza)