Marriage is intended to be a way in which man and woman help each other to become what God meant each one to be, their deepest and their truest selves. -
-Richard John Carew Chartres, the Bishop of London- The priest who sounded like Shakespeare at the Royal wedding of Kate and William.
-Francine Graff, daughter of State Senator Loretta Weinberg
After graduating from college, I decided to fulfill my long awaited dream of finding fame and fortune in the land of Hollywood. I grew up under the gray skies of Teaneck, New Jersey. Most of my friends and our families lived in simple colonial homes that smelled of spaghetti and meatballs and spent most nights in front of the television. The boring burbs looked unspectacular to me.
Life in Hollywood would be grand and my husband (a perfect man whom I would someday find) and I, along with our adorable well behaved children, would frolic on our 10 acre estate in Bel Air, post Oscar winning party. We would look at each other tenderly and admire our good fortune.
Cut to: Shattered glass sound effect over stop frame of picture shattering.
Although my dreams of Hollywood never materialized I worked for and around many of the rich and fabulous. I realized with great disillusionment, that the more famous a person became the more screwed up the life that was sure to follow.
Many people were shocked to find out that Maria Shriver and Arnold Schwarzenegger were separating. Then the big one really hit when Arnold revealed he had fathered a child with a former household staffer over a decade ago.
What I am most shocked about in this whole scenario is that everyone is so shocked!
Maria our feelings for you are so mixed up. On the one hand we feel sad for you and your kids and on the other hand we are mad at you, a journalist, for not noticing that something in this story didn't add up.
Much like Ms. Shriver, I grew up in a political household. My mother, State Senator Loretta Weinberg, became a sort of mother/confessor to many of her male colleagues. They would schedule coffee with her to tell her (before she heard it in the press) of their impending divorces.
My mother, the daughter of a politician and philandering father, would look them in the eye and with the guilt of a Jewish mother say, "And who is the bimbo?"
Inevitably, a confession would follow and the men having been reduced to boys would shamelessly leave with their tails between their you-know-whats.
My mom, who always told me about the latest breakup, and I never looked at these men with much respect again.
Why are we so surprised? Arnold is a celebrity AND a politician. Maria is from the first family of facades, niece to President John F. Kennedy. She takes her place among a long line of women married to philandering philanthropists. For those of you who are still shocked and disappointed over Arnold's behavior and Maria's willingness to deny it all of these years, I've included a few of my rules that rule. These are for people who think the rich and famous have it all and who might not be able to take one more celebrity break up. Perhaps a support group can be started.
Rule #1: Philanderers are both Democrats, Republicans, Independents and Evangelical Christians. Yes, even Evangelicals. If you don’t believe me you can check out, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Christian_evangelist_scandals
Rule #2: Be grateful for your small messy house, lots of laundry piled up and your husband who might pass gas a little more then you like. At least he loves you and is too exhausted to cheat on you.
#4: Narcissism: Best you understand this word thoroughly before you date or marry a man with political and or celebrity aspirations. He will get confused with his movie roles and think he is someone who can use his robotic powers to save the world from nuclear annihilation.
#5: Use Birth Control. It is 2011! Arnold, if you are going to schtup someone who is working three feet away from your wife for Pete's sake, don't get the gal pregnant. Here is a complete list of birth control options for those of you who had sex ed. taken out of your schools. http://familydoctor.org/online/famdocen/home/women/contraceptive/016.html
#5: A little Sisterhood ladies! I know feminism is pretty much dead but how about not getting involved with a married man. He might tell you how awful his wife is and that they are living in separate bedrooms. Unless he gets a legal divorce consider him still married. Out of respect for his wife, stay away.
Getting back to that awesome priest guy at William and Kate’s wedding, I really do believe that marriage does have the capacity to transform us. It takes a lot to dig deep and look at one’s own flaws in order to make the other person happy.
Even if it means driving to three different supermarkets to buy a husband his special pastry flour because he insists on making pancakes (for finicky children who don’t eat them anyway) from scratch and only pastry flour will do, it is time to take our marriage vows seriously and attempt to make the other person happy. As a result, you will be making each other happy.
Last I heard, we do not live in a society of forced or arranged marriages. If you want out of your marriage, get out first. Then you can go from bed to bed to bed without hurting anyone. If you want your cake and you want to eat it too then perhaps joining the cast of Sister Wives might be a better career move than the Governor of California.
The Friday Cartoon ©2011 by Rick Penn-Kraus. www.RPKdesigns.com. The Friday Cartoon is now a paperback at lulu.com.