my occasional musings on life, love, art, perfume ... what else is there?

5.18.2005

In Defense of the Married Man


I can't help it. I'm not funny all the time. Sometimes I'm downright morbid. Um, I prefer to think of it as melancholy -- but rest assured I feel guilty for those bleak lapses.

So here it is: I'm thinking witty. Must be witty. Preferably wit with an edge. So people know I'm cool and have not lost it.

Best I could come up with: a post in defense of the married man.

I ran this past my creative director (and she knows who she is). After a deep guffaw, she ok'd the topic. [This is the same woman with whom I will be retiring; we shall be feisty widows in our senile years. Today she informed me that in our retirement we will also be doing outreach work with prostitutes. She's kind of a do-gooder. I suggested we just become really benevolent madames but she wouldn't go for that. Even though we could have handsomely supplemented our social security with it. (Whole new meaning to private accounts.) Killjoy.]

Ahem.

But first, as I ever do when my creativity runs dry, let's consult Dorothy Parker for her take on the battle of the sexes:

General Review of the Sex Situation

Woman wants monogamy;
Man delights in novelty.
Love is a woman's moon and sun;
Man has other forms of fun.
Woman lives but in her lord;
Count to ten, and a man is bored.
With this the gist and sum of it,
What earthly good can come of it?

Most of the time I agree with Dot. I even think all of this is true until the average male gets married.

Funny, but although men are ostensibly the ones who run from marriage, most of them LOVE it once they're trapped, I mean caught, I mean married.

Why? Because most men crave the security of domestic tranquility and will do almost anything to make sure it is not disturbed. If they have a bit of the wild hare in them this will require duplicity, but never mind.

For the most part, men just want to see the domestic ship on an even keel. They are creatures of routine and they really like it when the seas are calm, when no torpedoes are being lobbed, when the teak and brass have been polished to a high shine, their socks are washed and folded AND when dinner is prepared [in the galley, not a restaurant] and on time.

Honestly, they'll go quite the distance to make sure their particular version of peace is achieved.

That's why a certain look in a woman's eyes is often enough to strike terror in their hearts. It only takes a few episodes of their lives being made a living hell to completely convince the average husband that, truly, it is She Who Must Be Obeyed.

Or so I've heard. I personally have not experienced this, but I have heard other women talk about it.

Aren't we being too hard on them? Do we demand too much, in too strident a voice? Haven't we lost sight of the value of the "surrendered" wife, that complacent, compliant paragon of feminity?

Please discuss this among yourselves and report back.

7 Comments:

Blogger Jonniker said...

I do think we're often too hard on them. Interestingly, my generation of women was raised, in many ways to take no crap from a man - I think, at times, to a selfish fault.

Stridence is revered on TV. Do you know of a nice sitcom wife? Nope, they're all bitches who demand excellence from their assumed to be dunce husbands.

I could go on. I might. But now, I sleep.

8:01 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the "surrendered" wife, that complacent, compliant paragon of feminity... HA! Like that was ever going to happen.

A few weeks before I tied the knot my mother pulled my sweet fiance aside and gently informed him that I was a very messy young woman. Marrying me he would have to accept that the sink would be full of dirty dishes and none of the brass would be polished. My husband replied that he had already noticed and would marry me anyways. My husband's better at cleaning anyways.

neko

9:01 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Aha!! Laughing laughing laughing . What a wonderfully delightful entry today. Thanks for the funniness and the seriousness so seamlessly intertwined.

I have now talked amongst myself and think maybe we should be a bit more domineering than we are with our man. Being a non-rocker of the boating jaunt only goes so far. (How does one get the man to clean up the disaster in the garage?...his mess)

To be fair. I am a messy wife too. My messes are cute though and they always involve art. His are big and greasy, involving large vessels of tallow and confusing tangles of engine detritus. sigh


~cleariing

6:08 AM

 
Blogger BarbaraFromCalifornia said...

Morbid, funny, cool and a visual artist, with Bucky the bomb!

What more could you want!

Actually, there was something wonderfully appealing about Ozzie and Harriet! Love that photo.

9:24 AM

 
Blogger Kyahgirl said...

So what's wrong with being content with a smoothly sailing ship? Many married men are to be envied for their calm acceptance of their married life. Perhaps they are oblivious to the possibilities of life outside of marriage, but it can be better than to be a woman, constantly tormented by the possibilities of a different life.

xo

2:22 PM

 
Blogger katiedid said...

My husband once remarked to me what a relief it was that I'm just as messy and irrational as him. He said this after meeting our friend T's new fiancee, who is one of those placid doormat-y women who speak in a high little girl voice on purpose. He said being married to that kind of smooth perfection would drive him batty, because he'd always feel the scruffy one who has to live up to his wife. He thought that sounded like a depressing situation. With us we don't have to live up to each other, we get the joy of frustrations of living with each other, and that is meaningful and rewarding.

4:25 PM

 
Blogger Urban Chick said...

what can i say? i love dotty p too but sometimes you have to fib to be witty (this is what i am finding, anyhoo)

UC

5:18 AM

 

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