Monday, May 02, 2005

Saturday evening I didn't feel much like cooking. Neither did Hal, for that matter. Since neither of us was feeling particularly in the mood for a long schlep in the dropping-rope rainy weather, we ended up at the Paddock. We love the Paddock for its dark, horsey-themed decor, its red naugahyde booths and its eye-talian comfort food. The several televisions playing at once can be either a blessing or a curse, depending on what's on: I hated forgetting that it was Fear Factor night, for example, as I'd end up having to take my meal home if they were eating worms after I'd ordered pasta.

This evening, Hal got a good chicken piccata (one of my favorites there) and I got a salad and mussels in wine sauce. For entertainment, we were treated to ET's exhaustive interview with Mary Kay Letourneau and her now fiance Vili Fualaau. A good bit of this was soft-focus images of them making eyes at each other and kissing with plenty of shots of them opening up the tons of gifts they've received and teasers about her wedding dress (to be revealed tonight).

I guess what struck me aside from the fact that I spent more time that evening with the Happy Couple than with close members of my family over the past few years, was the level of ostentation being afforded their wedding. Given the nature of their "love story," is this warranted?

This, the latest Britney or J-Lo wedding, the Runaway Bride story, do nothing to help my current view of marriage. The fact that we're about 50% likely to get divorced here makes me wonder about the priorities of people getting married in the first place. I've never imagined myself walking down an aisle in a white dress (even as a kid - much less so now), never imagined myself in any state but my current one - single. If I love someone enough to want to be faithful to them and have them as a companion, is it somehow less sincere if I don't have a $20,000 wedding? Is it somehow less valid if I don't have an army there to witness the speaking of some self-evident vows? I just don't get it. I honestly don't.


Simon Kenton said...

For a cold and reasonable perspective from the standpoint of a successful male, see


The most exhaustive compilation I know of is at

cited in Ross.

Be said...

I would characterize it more as a misogynist perspective, actually. Seeing as I've become the Man I was supposed to marry - I have had issues with men who've looked for free rides based on their impressions of women looking for their fairy tale princes. Since my mom and two of my best friends were taken to the cleaners by men who knew how to play women and game the system, I can honestly say that everything you've posted can be reversed as warnings to successful women about prowling males.

Simon Kenton said...

Exactly; I forwarded Ross to my children of both sexes. This is one of many reasons to date older women. It was just so refreshing the first time I met a woman who said, "I'm not letting some _man_ get at my money." The woman I did marry, after 18 years as a bachelor, was as insistent as I about a pre-nup. (In a different post Ross has equally scathing advice for leech-like 'passionate artists' who set their sights on wealthy women.)

OT - thanks for the pointer to Diderot's histoire.

Be said...

"Older women?" Well, I guess it depends. I'd say that more important than chronological age is emotional maturity and the ability to take care of one's self. I know many "older" men and women who act like 12 year olds. Conversely, I know a few folks younger than me who have their heads screwed on well.

As for people leeching off of one another - well, again, depends on the person.