Sean Penn on turning 60 amid pandemic

Published July 30, 2020, 12:17 PM

by Janet Nepales

Sean Penn, Actor, Activist

Los Angeles — Wearing a gray t-shirt that reads “Actually, I am in Havana,”
Sean Penn, with his wild bed hair, talked to us recently while self-isolating at his home in Los Angeles.
 

Turning 60 on Aug. 17, the talented and outspoken actor-activist
revealed, “6-0, it’s about time.  I have always thought of myself as a natural
born 77, so I got 17 years before I am going to feel like me. So that’s the
main thing finally, get 60 done so I can get to 61, so I can get to 62 and
onwards to 77. Either there is that thing, people ask that question on
psychological profiles, at what age do you see yourself most comfortably,
and for me I don’t know why it always was but it was always 77.
 

“As for a celebration, I have an extraordinary woman—we were just
speaking to a member of the press from Australia. I am madly in love with a
wonderful Australian woman and for anyone who knows wonderful
Australian women, and they know that they are in command of any
celebrations that do not happen.  So that’s laying in wait for me or it’s not.”
How is he coping with the pandemic and the lockdown?
 

“I’ve thought about this more in the last week than I have in all the months
of this,” he disclosed.  “And I found myself reflecting on it thinking as any
time my cells were prone to absorb the notion of the Groundhog Day that
we’re all in, that, processing the reality of those who we have to participate
in a mourning process for the dead and the dying, and those that are just
suffering the kind of general same level of terror we should all share of the
unknowns of this virus, even among those who experience it
asymptomatically, there are many indications that there will be health
issues that will plague them for the rest of their lives.

 
“This is dangerous in that it’s lethal to some and it’s dangerous in ways that
we don’t know to all of us. But then there’s the part of it that is the kind of
attrition, the lack of social engagement that we’re used to, our day to day
lives, our ability to set benchmarks that we either achieve or we don’t. But
there’s no greater attack that’s preventing us from it and now those
benchmarks are lived in invisibly, they’re not there. And so our whole
psychology is of course under that assault.”
“And so my medicine is just how lucky I am. My children are healthy, knock
on wood, my mother lives two blocks away. She’s 92 years old and she’s
healthy, knock on wood, and tomorrow’s another day. But it’s a Groundhog
Day; it gets on all of us in one way or another.”

 
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