1972. Les has a wife called Chris. He often talks about her at work. ‘Oh, Chris and I had a picnic at Silvan Reservoir’, he says when asked about his weekend. Yet each time the office Christmas barbecue comes around, Chris is unavailable. She is unwell. She is visiting family. She had to help a friend. Everyone smiles and nods. Oh, that’s too bad. Maybe next time. We were really looking forward to meeting her.
Of course, Les has no wife. There may be a Chris, and there was probably a picnic, but Chris is a bloke and everyone who’s figured it out politely pretends not to know.
2016. Les strolls in to work wearing a repulsively skimpy frock. After a quick visit to the ladies’ room he proudly flounces into the office and regales his colleagues with tales of his debauched weekend adventures. It was this big, he says. This big! He gestures more vigorously in the face of the man who is trying to ignore him. This big! And full of veins! Look at me, goddamn you. Hate crime!
But our culture is certainly not one of anything goes. While some lifestyle choices are now fawningly celebrated, other choices have become objectionable. And I am beginning to realize that I am making one of those socially unacceptable choices, and that I need to keep it in the closet.
You see, I am in my late 30s and unmarried. Even more unforgivably, I have no apparent plans to marry, nor a desire to do so. There is only one man in the office around my age who is unmarried and he gets away with it because he has a long term girlfriend who everyone knows and who he will probably marry in the next few years. I have no such partner. This is a small town and people are starting to realize that I’m a dog. That I use women primarily as masturbatory tools, and that I don’t keep each one around for long.
This is still acceptable, even normal, for a younger man. For a man of my age it is frowned upon. After all, a man’s raison d’être is to marry a woman and to provide her with babies and resources. Any man who chooses not to do that is selfishly depriving a woman of the family and security that she deserves. It doesn’t matter whether she’s white, local or bloody Namibian, the important thing is that you put a ring on that finger and buy her a house. Marrying a Filipina, Thai or Vietnamese is frowned upon, especially if she is very attractive, younger and treats you with great respect, but even that is preferable to the sin of avoiding marriage altogether.
And which woman in particular is it, who I am depriving of her rightful mate? Critics of men like me will have one in the back of their mind. It might be themselves, if they are single and over 30. It might be their lonely friend, the reformed party girl. It might be their daughter who looks like she’ll be unable to provide them with grandchildren. In any case, were I not such a douchy turdburger this lady of the hindbrain would have better material and spiritual prospects for the future. She could enjoy whining about how awful her husband and children are along with all the other mothers on the internet and later divorce me and take all my stuff and future earnings in order to find herself, permitting me to see the kids the first Sunday of every second September under armed guard by a snarling leopard with halitosis. Meanwhile she’ll be luxuriating on expensive silken sheets in the massive, hairy arms of the bully who held me down in high school while the giggling mean girls shoved used tampons up my nose. Yes, some of my beloved readers accuse me of exaggerating for the sake of drama but these scenarios are scientifically proven to occur 100% of the time.
This attitude is not unique to my company. I have noticed this with other employers. They look down on unmarried men as unstable and dissolute, but regard unmarried women as either Strong and Independent or as victims of arseholes like me.
I look younger than I am so I’ve gotten away with it so far. But, for how long? When people find out my age they look at me with suspicion. Sometimes they even ask if I’ve ever been married, or whether I have any children. Their faces give me warning: I’m running out of time. Like the 1970s gay man caught holding hands with a Greek bear, I’ve got to think fast.
Option 1 – The Loser
Pretend that I am unlucky in love. Reminisce about the one that got away. Express a desire to marry and have children some day. Act forlorn when people ask me if I’m seeing anyone.
Pros: People will be sensitive when asking me questions about my love life. They will be more inclined to leave me alone.
Cons: If I am considered a loser in one regard I will be considered a loser in others, thus limiting career opportunities. This is not such a biggie as I have other priorities.
A more worrying drawback is that of diminishing plausibility. People are likely to see me hanging out with a variety of young (and not so young) ladies. The strategy would therefore work best in a big, anonymous city.
Option 2 – The Divorcee
Tell people that I was once married and that it ‘didn’t work out’. There were no children, it was mutual, we were married for four years, the first two of which were very happy. It wasn’t how I planned my life to be. She was Australian, of course. White Australian. That gives it a certain respectability, like I don’t just have an Asian fetish. I am now a miserable divorcee trying to start again in a new country, who might yet allow hope to triumph over experience by tying the knot with some acceptably average lady of my own age. Nothing to see here.
Pros: As with Option 1, this would provide a handy excuse for a single life at my age. It would reduce the loser problem – someone, somewhere once married me. I can’t be that bad.
Cons: I might get caught. If I unexpectedly need to fill out paperwork detailing past marital status (this sort of thing can happen overseas with visas and whatnot), I can say we were never legally married. Still. Getting caught would look really weird. In my industry, appearing dodgy is much worse than being a loser. Also, I’m a bad liar. Readers even know when I’m fibbing on this blog. Bloody hopeless.
Option 3 – The Cad
What? Isn’t that exactly the problem? Well sort of. But if I’m a Supermassive Tier One Alpha Chad Thundercock then I can get away with absolutely anything. That’s the rules.
Pros: As stated.
Cons: I am not a Supermassive Tier One Alpha Chad Thundercock and I doubt that I could convince anyone that I am. I’m not even very tall.
Option 4 – The Poof
Pretend to be gay. Gays are allowed to be single. They are also allowed to be married, these days. They just get everything.
Pros: Victim shield engaged! I would be impervious to any criticism. Not just of my lifestyle – of anything. Yay! [Waves limp hands melodramatically in the air].
Cons: Ah, you can see where this would go. The office cat ladies introduce me to their gay friends, who sniff out my true status the moment they spot my shoes. The CEO invites me in for a meeting and flops out his cock. If that happened I’d just have to cop it on the chin.
None of these options seems magnificent. That’s a problem. Employers in certain countries (not Papua New Guinea) are wary of hiring men who are more interested in chasing the hot local women than they are in pursuing their careers. This would most certainly be true of myself.
I suspect the best solution is to make myself such a valuable employee that they’ll hire me anyway, and be loathe to let me go. A normal person would have thought of that first. But this is not a corner of the internet where normies are plentiful, or welcome. And frankly, I’m fungible.
Further reading: Milk and Wine