Not A Pink Girl

Love ya. Mean it! Or not.

July 12, 2008
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I went to Hagerstown Maryland on Saturday with my husband. Which part of that sentence is the shocker? The fact that my husband & I actually went somewhere together that didn’t involve our son. Sad, huh? It just seems like we go our separate ways lately. Well, more like for the last 3 years (maybe more). That’s just how it’s become. I think things evolve like that when you’re married as long as we’ve been. He works full time & I’m an at-home mom (or stay-at-home-mom, or SAHM). There are days when we don’t see each other at all. He’ll leave at zero-dark-thirty & I’ll still be asleep. I might be out when he gets home from work. I go to bed late; he goes to bed early.

Why do people stay married so long? It seems like such an artificial state. Do people stay married so they can have an ad in the Sunday paper weddings & anniversaries section that says, “Mr. & Mrs. Rhett Butler are celebrating their golden anniversary on a private island in the Caribbean.” The part that article leaves out is the fact that the couple will only exchange about 6 words between them the whole week they’re gone “celebrating.”

I think long marriages look much better on paper than they do on a daily basis. Do people stay married because it’s like a marathon race, & they’ve trained so hard for this & stayed in it for so long that it would just be sad to quit just before the finish line?

Think about it. What’s the purpose of staying married?

You might say, “Well, a couple should stay together for the children.” Okay.

Let’s say a couple’s been married for 30 years. They might have 3 kids, ages 27, 25, & 23. None of their kids lives with them.

Age-27 is renting a room in an old Victorian in Santa Cruz CA & works at a restaurant as a bartender. During his off-time he gets a little surfing in, hangs out at the neighborhood Barnes & Noble listening to bites of the newest prog rock CDs, & trying to figure out where his next bag of pot’s coming from.

Age-25 lives in Denver CO. She just got her master’s degree in fine art; she’s sharing a condo with a girlfriend from college who also happens to be her significant-other (something she knows her parents aren’t ready to deal with, so she’s never told them). She works as the assistant manager of a ski shop & keeps her ear to the ground for jobs at galleries in Cherry Creek North & LoDo. She finds herself drinking much more & eating much less as each week goes by without her getting a “real” job. But all the girls her age drink; doesn’t everybody? (She would never think to refer to herself as a “woman;” she doesn’t have any idea what her mother & grandmother had to suffer through in order to be respected as adults & not just “chicks” or “gals”.)

Age-23 didn’t go to college & still lives at home with Mom & Dad. He’s quiet & sweet; he’s great company to his parents. He likes to read fiction & sleep late. He watches lots of Netflix & doesn’t believe in God. He doesn’t date much which really isn’t a big deal. He has friends of both sexes he sees once or twice a week when he goes out for pizza with them. His parents come too & sit at a separate table; when the bill comes, Mom & Dad pay for both parties, theirs & their son & his friends. Age-23 works at the local no-kill animal shelter & makes a little more than minimum wage. He isn’t interested in owning a car & borrows his mom’s, or has his parents pick him up or drop him off. He doesn’t drink alcohol or smoke anything.

So should the parents stay together for the kids? I’ll talk about their hypothetical marriage in a future post.

A couple I know just filed for divorce. They have four kids & have been married for about 16 years. The brick of a husband (I use the word “brick” as a pejorative because he used to be as dependable as a rock but now he has proven himself to be as dumb as a bag of pea gravel) revealed to his wife (an at-home mom) that he met someone in nearby West Virginia where he worked & he is leaving his wife for her. Just to put the cherry on the cake of this story, he told his wife he was leaving her on Christmas Day.

More later!

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I need a Holiday.

June 13, 2008
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I just got done watching the movie The Holiday with Jack Black, Kate Winslet, Jude Law & Cameron Diaz. This is the second time I saw it.

This time around, it made me really depressed. Are there people in real life that have experienced happy romantic lives like these characters? If so, note to Source: You missed me when You were bestowing lasting happiness through romantic relationships. I just go through day in & day out (okay, year in & year out) of quiet desperation in this department.

I must admit though, watching this movie again also made me hopeful that someday I might be able to experience some of the things that happened in the movie. Yeah, I know. One’s born every minute.

I like this movie. I know it’s supposed to be a Christmas movie, but you should rent it & tell me what you think. It got 2 stars on my cable network (which I just don’t understand). I give it 4 stars.

There’s a great scene in this movie with Jack Black & Kate Winslet in the video store.

How come it’s okay for male actors to be overweight but not female actors? I think Jack Black is attractive. & actors like Patrick Dempsey does nothing for me. Go figure. On the other hand, I think Jude Law is exceedingly cute, & he looks like he needs to eat something with gravy on it now or risk falling over in a dead faint.

It makes me laugh to think there are women who think Kate Winslet is fat. God forbid a woman should have a derriere. I must say I think Kate’s costar in The Holiday, Cameron Diaz, is annoying. I’m not talking about her weight – although she is bony – although the term skinny bitch does come to mind.

Speaking of Christmas movies: I read that the actor who played the young George Bailey in It’s A Wonderful Life, Robert J. Anderson, died this week. “Don’t hit my bad ear, Mister Gower!” He was born the same year as my father, but outlived him by 25 years. My father reminded me more of Mister Gower (pre-come-to-Jesus) than he ever did of George Bailey, that’s for sure.

That movie. Hmm. I know everyone loves it (I do, too). But I can’t always watch it. This past Christmas I didn’t. I just couldn’t bring myself to listen to its feel-good, upbeat message of “Just think of how many people you made happy with your miserable little life.” As if that should really keep people rattling around this dark wilderness called existence even though we’re personally unhappy. How should I react to being neglected, ignored, exploited, passed over, dismissed, not taken seriously, taken advantage of, etc.? By just being thankful at least I made everyone else’s lives I touched happy? Jeez, if that’s not a reason to become a hermit, I don’t know what is.

I always laugh when I hear someone who’s recently separated say, “I just want him [or her] to be happy.” Yeah, right. How selfless. Just think how often your ex thought about your happiness when he was running around behind your back with a 26-year-old or working in the office 16 hours at a clip instead of home taking care of his family, or whatever it was that he did to cause your marriage to break up.

It seems mighty bleak to me to think that we should just trudge on through our sad, lonely lives because – you never know! – you might be able to make someone’s day by pulling them out of the way of a speeding cab or handing them back their wallet they dropped without realizing it. & then the poor helpful sap wanders home to her empty house & watches romantic comedy reruns on basic cable while eating Skinny Cow pretend-ice-cream cones to try to temporarily salve her heart (you know, the one that’s been broken so many times it has a stone of scar tissue inside it).

So dear George Bailey, thanks for all your help. But when someone saves the Building & Loan from Mister Potter, there will always be 20 Republicans like the Bush family, Dick Cheney, & John McCain to swoop down & turn it into something far more sinister & scandalous than a burlesque house.

But at least we’ll always have Jack Black in The Holiday, sitting at his piano with Kate Winslet singing, “Scroodeley doodle, dee scroodeley doo…” That should distract us from the hundreds of impeachable offenses George W. Bush & Dick Cheney have perpetrated on the selfless & helpful citizens of the United States.

Come to think of it, the phrase “I just want him to be happy” usually precedes some kind of rampage, so I guess I should take that with a grain of salt. Pass the Skinny Cow.

 


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