Bono is 50 today: Which version of the U2 frontman do you prefer?

Bono is 50 freaking years old. Repeat that a couple times and your aching bones and bruised liver might not feel so bad this Monday morning.

Bono is like the "woobie" of the '80s generation, a gentle companion who's always been there through the good times and the bad times. From pogo-jumping on stage while performing I Will Follow at the dawn of our beloved decade to gracing the cover of every magazine in every English-speaking country on the planet during his humanitarian push of the last decade.

Times pop music critic and Stuck in the '80s co-host Sean Daly puts it all in perspective today with his piece in the newspaper. To me, Bono is more about the images than the words. Here are some that stick out.

Which Bono do you prefer?

HUMANITARIAN BONO:

Bono humanitarian
Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill and Bono wear the traditional outfits presented to them by the villagers of Wamali, in Tamale, northern Ghana, in 2002. [AP photo]

COVERBOY BONO:

Bono coverboy
On the cover of Time magazine, March 4, 2002. [AP photo]

REPUBLICAN POLITICIAN BONO:

Bono politician
Bono meets reporters on Capitol Hill Wednesday in 2001, to discuss the global AIDS crisis. Joining him, from left are, Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Pa., Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah and Sen. Jesse Helms, R-N.C. [AP photo]

FREAKY STAGE DIVA BONO:

Bono-diva
Entertaining the crowd at the Silverdome in Pontiac, Mich., in 1997. [AP photo]

BONO AS JOHN LENNON:

Bono-military
Posing with U.S. Army Sgt. John Kohne during a visit to an U.S. anti-artillery radar installation overlooking the Bosnian capital of Sarajevo in 1995.

BONO THE FAN:

Sinatra
Shaking hands with Frank Sinatra after he presented the crooner with the Grammy Legend award during the 36th Annual Grammy Awards at New York's Radio City Music Hall on March 1, 1994. [AP photo]

BONO IN TAMPA:

Bono-tampa
Oh yeah, and Bono actually sings too. Here he is at the old Tampa Stadium in 1992. [Times photo]

BONO FROM LIVE AID:

MUSIC_LIVE_AID
Oh, Bono is there. Right in the middle. His mullet haircut still visible. On July 13, 1985, he joined fellow British and Irish singers at Live Aid. Also in the photo: George Michael, Bob Geldolf, Freddie Mercury, Andrew Ridgley and Howard Jones.

[Last modified: Thursday, June 17, 2010 11:43am]

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