Sunday, December 17, 2006

He's a Husband, Not a Child or a Houseplant

By the time I met John, my co-worker Paula's husband, I was aware of every single one of his faults. I knew the last five stupid things he'd done (forgotten to do the dishes as he'd promised, failed to mail a birthday card to her sister, purchased the wrong kind of soup at the grocery store, left the car unlocked with his cell phone in it, and didn’t pick up his wet towel on the bathroom floor). From the way she'd described the guy to me, I was shocked he wasn't openly drooling.

We were at a mutual friend's wedding, sitting around at a banquet table, and I was next to the (as Paula often called him) "total moron." He was talking to me about football, one arm wrapped around the back of his wife's chair, and though he didn't flash a Nobel Prize in physics at me, he knew quarterback stats, he was polite, and he couldn't say enough good things about his wife.

And about halfway through our conversation she turned around and snapped her fingers at him.

"Go get me a drink," she said, then turned back to the talk she was having with a girl on the other side of her.

Jesus Christ in a prom dress!

Ladies: A man, once and for all, is not a pet.

He may act like one from time to time, lolling around in the bed, cute as a button all curled up on the couch, looking at you sheepishly after he's knocked something over. But if you ask him to fetch and he has any self-respect at all, he'll tell you to fetch it your own damn self.

There's a whole cottage industry built around the caricature of the married or shacked-up male as lovable oaf, helpless in the face of the dishwasher, needing our feminine intervention to make straight the domestic way. America's most odious sitcom, “According to Jim,” features each week a way the dim-bulb husband gets himself into trouble with some household appliance or commonplace chore and has to be extricated from his predicament by his calm, cool, collected wife. ... click here for more


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