We’re very proud of ourselves for coming up with this one. With the whole Weiner scandal going on, we were discussing how there’s got to be something in between flirting and actual physical cheating. What Weiner did goes beyond mere flirting — even though it didn’t involve physical contact with anyone other than his wife, it did involve sexual antics (and release?) with other women via social networking services and the telephone. So it’s not full-blown, full-body-contact, STD-and-pregnancy-risking cheating, it’s more like virtual or cyber cheating.
Pamela Haag’s new book “Marriage Confidential” has one of the best subtitles we’ve seen in a long time: “The Post-Romantic Age of Workhorse Wives, Royal Children, Undersexed Spouses, and Rebel Couples Who Are Rewriting the Rules.” That’s a lot to live up to, but the book delivers. And it’s getting good buzz. Below is an excerpt from the section “New Twists on Old Infidelities, Or, The Way We Stray Today”:
As regular readers of this blog will know, one of our pet peeves is when scientific research about sex and love gets twisted and “re-interpreted” and boiled down and sexed up to make a juicy magazine or newspaper headline. (And yes, we have definitely been guilty of this tendency ourselves, at times. You try resisting when a guy in a lab coat studies sex in socks!) Which is why we love the newish column in the NY Times Style section by Pamela Paul, called “Studied.” Each week Paul takes a new study that is making the rounds — this week it was research showing that economically dependent men are more likely to cheat on their female partners — and attempts to unpack it. And — get this — Paul doesn’t necessarily take the each study’s findings at face value. Isn’t that what they used to call “journalism”?
Late last year we published an excerpt from our friend Robin’s book (So Sue Me, Jackass! Avoiding Legal Pitfalls That Can Come Back to Bite You at Work, at Home, and at Play) about who gets to keep the ring after a broken engagement. The lawerly response? “While common courtesy dictates that the ring should remain with the dumpee, the law in most jurisdictions dictates that if a ring is given in contemplation of marriage, the woman doesn’t take title to the ring until the marriage takes place. That means if the marriage doesn’t take place, the ring goes back to the giver.”
To count down to the Sundance Film Festival, we’ve been blogging about some of our favorite movie moments in the festival’s history. We’ve covered the Top 10 Lessons in Love, Top 10 Lessons in Young Love, Top 10 Oddest Couples, and Top 10 Sexy-FAIL Moments. This week is the final installment, and we saved the worst for last — infidelity, so bad for marriages, but so good for movie-makers. As Tolstoy sort of said, all happy marriages resemble one another, but each unhappy marriage is unhappy in its own way. Have a nice day!
- PERSONAL VELOCITY: THREE PORTRAITS: This movie is soaked through with infidelity, in particular the knock-on effect that infidelity (and its close cousins, abandonment and divorce) has on the kids. Philip Larkin put it best: “They fuck you up, your mum and dad. / They may not mean to, but they do. / They fill you with the faults they had / And add some extra, just for you.”
- THE INFORMERS: Based on Bret Easton Ellis’s story collection (’nuff said, perhaps?), this film’s speciality is early ’80s L.A. infidelity. In other words, the sex is fueled by booze and drugs and is even emptier than your average illicit shag.
photo via venetia_joubert_sarah_oosterveld
If you’ve listened to Howard Stern even once over the past decade (that’d be Em, not Lo), then you know that one of his most loyal advertisers is the Ashley Madison Agency — the online dating site that caters to married people with the tagline “Life is short. Have an affair.” Charming. On and off over the years, we’ve thought about reporting on Ashley Madison, but every time we did, steam would come out of our ears and we’d realize that our entire article would consist of seven words, most likely typed in all caps: “Stop cheating you slimeball pieces of shit.” Just because the site sounds like it was named by Nora Roberts, as Jezebel so brilliantly notes, doesn’t mean it’s any less sleazy, immoral, unethical, or just plain wrong.
photo by optimal_tweezers
The other week we explained how evolutionary psychology can be so annoying sometimes, what with all its assumptions about modern-day dating and mating behavior based on hunter-gatherer societies. Sure, sometimes those theories are fascinating and even enlightening, but sometimes they’re just plain wrong.