Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Return of UnPlain Jane

After a much-too-long hiatus, mostly due to wedding planning and partially due to a hearty combination of wine and Oprah, UnPlain Jane is returning to the blogosphere with tales of life as an unemployed New Yorker attempting to feed her spending habits and achieve her life goals with nothing but a pair of Prada pumps and a new laptop.

The wedding was beautiful, the honeymoon was fabulous and each had its fair share of emergencies, disasters and typical-of-UnPlain Jane-rediculousness. I would go into the specifics, but they are the basis of my latest project, Wedding. Honeymoon. Disaster: A Collection of Essays from a Calamity Bride. So rather than crack you up with tales of a broken dress, a stomach virus and a renegade mouse (the breathing kind), I'll do my best to earn your guffaws through the continuing saga of my life, as it is, with a new last name and a new lease on life.

Upon returning to NYC as a married woman I somehow expected my priorties to shift. The minute the plane touched down, the Xanax wore off and I no longer had a good excuse like, "It's our Honeymoon", to devour six scoops of ice cream in one sitting, I assumed that my brain would shift into adult mode. I assumed that some switch in my now-married mind would click and I would become consumed with thoughts of a mortgage, babies and fine china. I was wrong. Yes, I am nesting and have the smallest urge to throw a dinner party as an excuse to use my new servingwear, but at the same time I have an even bigger urge to use a chunk of that wedding stash to buy myself something in Chincilla that I can show off at the opening of a new lounge, which, at 28, I am probably too old to even know the name of, but narcissistic enough to diet myself right past the velvet ropes.

Now, as I procrastinate on writing 200 Thank You Cards and tell myself over and over that I SHOULD be spending two hours a day lounging, reading and napping, I have noticed a few ways in which life as a married person feels a little different.

Reason # 1: Sex

Being that half of my readership is in someway related to either my husband, "T", or myself, I'm aware that this is not a topic anyone wants me to delve deeply into so I will tread lightly. However, this is probably the first area, since arriving home, I've noticed any sort of "married feeling" with. Honeymoon Sex is the equivalent of Vacation Sex and feels no different as a married couple as it does as girlfriend-boyfriend, fiance-fiancee or bridesmaid-groomsman-who-just-met-at-the-wedding. It involves a hotel room, a bikini wax and a king size bed roomy enough to allow for no physical contact while sleeping after the deed is done. Sex changes when you get back from the honeymoon.

A) You're a little bit fatter. After two weeks of four square meals a deal, each complete with dessert, there is bound to be more Cushion for the Pushion.

B) You're a little bit more tired. There's a great likelihood that upon returning from your honeymoon, one of you is or both of you are, returning to work. Without twenty-four hours to devote to relaxing, eating and having sex everyday, your stamina level is bound to go down.

C) You're legal. Unless you're a Mormon, Staunchly Catholic or a Chasidic Jew, as a married American there is no stigma to consumating the realtionship even if you are double-fisting birth control. Sex is something I never felt guilty about, even long before the ring hit the finger, but somehow as a married person, I feel entitled. No, we're not doing it to have kids, but we are married and we're doing it and that's good enough. More than ever, I feel that it's OK to say the words, "Mom, the other night when T and I were doing it...." even though I have no desire to open that can of worms, it feels good, as a married woman, to be able to open any can I want.

Reasone #2: Security

The ring. As a married woman you start to feel that the anywhere between 10 and 50 diamonds adorning your left hand ring finger marks you as someone's property not to be bought drinks for. There also is the comfort that your husband is now a marked man as well. And while his new bling is not flashy and goes so far as to make him MORE attractive to single hotties, it also serves as a reminder to him, the man you married, that even though this hot single broad wants to challenge herself by breaking through the "married barrier", he is wearing a constant reminder that not only did he commit himself to you for life, but moreover, he spent the majority of his savings trying to get you to agree to do the same. And he's not going to throw that out the window to see the same pair of boobs he can see by turning on an episode of "The Girls Next Door."

Reason # 3: You're calm.

After a few pre-wedding months of Xanax, Drunken Fights and Questioning "Is this relationship a Mistake?," you start to truly believe "normal relationships" invole panic attacks and fist marks on the wall. Cut to returning home from your honeymoon. You're married, you have nothing to plan, no twice-removed family members to call and convince you are dying to see or new seating arrangments to arrange. The multiple outside stressers that once ruled your life in the form of wedding-related tasks have disappated and you're left with "win the lottery" and "Bed, Bath and Beyond" as #1 and #2 on your To Do List. Without 4697 small things to stress you out, everything and anything that in the past, would've pissed you off, now seems like no big deal. So Today, when my husband, entirely joking and without thinking.called me "an idiot" in front of the twenty year old BestBuy clerk that sold us my new laptop, I stayed calm. Instead of flipping, storming out of the store and crying as his finace would've, I calmly stayed in the store, waited for my moment and eventually mentioned, "Do you know you called me an idiot in front of that child?"

As his finace, I would've flipped out, stormed out of the store and fought myself into an expensive NYC dinner. As a wife, I walked out of BestBuy with a brand new laptop, two bottles of wine, and sincere apology and a promise to "never do that again" in the future.

Married life is good. So good that UnPlain Jane rec omends it.

After only one week of arriving home from the honeymoon, I've realized that two rings and a bunch of diamonds don't turn me into a boring a schoolmarm. Instead, they turn me into the doubly-happy, hotter-since-working-off-the-honeymoon-weight, confident twenty-eight year old at the bar who will get you to buy me that bottle of Vueve NYC chick. I will ruin your night by going home to my husband and not with you, AND I will always be fierce.

The ring makes me stronger and that is something I wouldn't understand until two weeks after the wedding, when I strutted out onto the streets of yuppie-infested midtown as another one of those married Mid-town Jews that half the people in my neighborhood long to be.

7 comments:

BurnTees said...

you're married?!?!?!?

Carl said...

I have to take issue to part of your blogpost. I have slept on it, and find myself more critical and annoyed than i was when i first read it last night. Don't take the comments too personally. We're all friends, right?

I take offense to this: (capitalized part being the most important):
"After only one week of arriving home from the honeymoon, I've realized that two rings and a bunch of diamonds don't turn me into a boring a schoolmarm. Instead, they turn me into the doubly-happy, hotter-since-working-off-the-honeymoon-weight, confident twenty-eight year old at the bar WHO WILL GET YOU TO BUY ME THAT BOTTLE OF VUEVE NYC CHICK. I WILL RUIN YOUR NIGHT BY GOING HOME TO MY HUSBAND AND NOT WITH YOU, AND I will always be fierce."

So, you plan to trick men into buying you drinks, even though you have no intention of sleeping with them? This doesn't make you cosmopolitan, or trendy or cool. Men won't use words like that to describe you. They will think of you as a bitch, or c-word or skank. They will tell their friends that some slut came on to them at the club, pretended to be interested in them, got him to buy her drinks, then admitted she was married, and left. It will leave an awful taste in their mouth about the fairer sex.
Doing this makes you a con artist. You are tricking men into wasting their hard earned money on you by making them believe that there is hope that something will happen that never will happen. You think this makes you like Carrie Bradshaw. It makes you more like Bernie Madoff, and you are personally setting the feminist movement back 50 years.

Secondly, have you ever wondered why men aged 25-40 enjoy sleeping with women, and not calling them again? Or playing on their fears of being a cat lady, seducing them and refusing to commit? The answer is of course that men have the memory of an elephant, and remember all the times women used them (like you say you plan to) or hurt them. Men remember how women play them and trick them like this. So when men get to the age where they have power, and a woman's biological clock is ticking, they almost get enjoyment out of getting revenge for the things women do to them.

If you plan on doing what you say you are going to do, I wouldn't confess it to the world.

Un-Plain Jane said...

UnPlain Jane appreciates the honest reaction of her readers, especially men.

If I were a man, I too would take offense to my commentary. However, as a woman, it only goes further the few things I already believe to be true.

1. Men are simple enough to spend their hard earned money at even the smallest prospect of sex.

2. I can just as easily turn you on as I can annoy you.

3. I only have 10 good years until age makes me less attractive and my husband more attractive, thus shifting the balance of power.

So yes, I'm going to work it while I can.

shelen said...

She's BACK!! And as fabulous as ever! Work it girl!! xox

Amanda said...

Like you, I had to sleep on your comment back to UnPlain. Originally, I was going to leave it alone but it’s truly been grating on my nerves. While I wouldn’t dare say you’re completely unwarranted and, certainly, would never tell anyone that what they feel is wrong, I would like to take this opportunity to say a little something.

Now, of course, my first reaction is to simply defend my buddy, but I know her and she’s more then capable of doing that herself. I’m actually speaking on behalf of the wonderful men I’m lucky to have in my life. Also, please note that I do not need to resort to name calling, though you seem to think that’s acceptable.

I may be biased here, seeing as though Jane has been my bestie since the age of 10, but if there’s one thing Jane isn’t, it is some low-life man-tricking skank… which you claim men would call her for putting a drink into her diamond laden hand. Having known UnPlain this long, I’ve clearly had many nights out with her and actually seen her in action. Here is what I’ve observed:

1. Yes, she will take a free drink.
2. She almost ALWAYS buys back.
3. I’ve never once seen her hide, or try to hide, the fact that she has a boyfriend, fiancé or husband or whatever T’s title was at the time.
4. These exchanges have, more then once, turned into her finding the happily wife’d up man of the group, tell them all about T, he gushes back about his lady, they buy each other drinks and simply enjoy the company of a new friend and since neither was interested, it was just fun to talk to someone of the opposite sex.
5. She is absolutely fierce.

Having said the nice things about her, I can tell you this… to know Jane is to, not only love her, but to take her funny comments with a grain of (free pre-Patron shot) salt. Her blog is humorous, and generally self-deprecating, in a delightful way that only she knows how to do. Had your only comment been that she shouldn’t think she’s always going to get a free drink from a man, I would have said, “Cheers!” and went on my way but… I take MAJOR issue with the following comments you made about YOUR sex.

1. ALL men aged 25-40 enjoy sleeping with women and not calling them again… for revenge.
I, for one, have many male friends. They all fall within the aforementioned age range and also range from the nicest to the sluttiest guys that I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing. I also have 3 older brothers that could not be more different then if they came from completely different parents. I take offense that you would say this about them. I’ve never once heard a man (friend, brother, or random stranger) say that they’re out for revenge for something a women did to them at some point in their life. Yes, I know they’ve gone through the “sleep with anything that walks and never call them again” phase but I find it borderline disgusting to think that the men you know are doing it simply for revenge and not for the “sewing his wild oats” portion of their life.

2. Why is it that Jane, who just wants to go out and not feel ostracized by the ring on her finger, cannot meet new and different people who may or may not have a penis in their pants? I didn’t know there was a rule against buying a married woman a drink? Being a single woman, it scares me to think that someone is just buying me drinks to hopefully “seduce me” because they think they’re playing on some (unknown to me) fear that I’m going to end up alone with 86 cats. I’ve met plenty of men while out for the night, had a drink with them (regardless of who forked over a wallet busting $8-10), a nice conversation and then gone on our separate ways. I’m certainly not pimping myself out for drinks, feeling as though I’ve been used for a drink or playing into some weirdo’s mastermind plan to hump me and dump me because some girl told him she wasn’t interested in him when he was 16 years old.

3. You say that she set the feminist movement back 50 years but I wonder… where exactly are you caught up to in the feminist movement? You, claiming that women are drink-hunting, ring-hunting, biological clock ticking c-words only tells me two things:
A: You know very little about the movement that your mother, my mother, aunts and grandmothers fought for. Not too mention the fact that from what my father and uncles had to say about the bra-burning era, they fought for too.
B: You seem to think we’re still back in the ages of stay-at-home moms that cant vote. Luckily for me and the daughters and nieces I may someday have, we can work and vote… and (gasp!) stay at home. Oh… And so can our husbands.

Personally, I feel that you painted yourself in a far-worse light then Jane’s silly commentary… But I’m sure she’ll ponder your advice in the future about what that world should know about her… And then, hopefully, continue on the way she’s been doing.

Carl said...

I'd like to preface what I am going to say by admitting that I have an IQ of 75. I dropped out of school midway through the 7th grade. In fact, I got a 400 on the verbal portion of the SAT. Maybe my reading comprehension is awful.

I appreciate your defense of Jane. That's what friends do, and I appreciate your loyalty.

In the meantime, at no point do I interpret Jane's words to mean "I’ve clearly had many nights out with her and actually seen her in action. Here is what I’ve observed:

2. She almost ALWAYS buys back.
3. I’ve never once seen her hide, or try to hide, the fact that she has a boyfriend, fiancé or husband or whatever T’s title was at the time.
4. These exchanges have, more then once, turned into her finding the happily wife’d up man of the group, tell them all about T, he gushes back about his lady, they buy each other drinks and simply enjoy the company of a new friend and since neither was interested, it was just fun to talk to someone of the opposite sex."

Maybe you know those things because you know Jane well. On the other hand, I don't think any outside rational observer would read her blog and glean that from the paragraph that bothers me and the words she writes.

Let's revisit that sentence: "After only one week of arriving home from the honeymoon, I've realized that two rings and a bunch of diamonds don't turn me into a boring a schoolmarm. Instead, they turn me into the doubly-happy, hotter-since-working-off-the-honeymoon-weight, confident twenty-eight year old at the bar WHO WILL GET YOU TO BUY ME THAT BOTTLE OF VUEVE NYC CHICK. I WILL RUIN YOUR NIGHT BY GOING HOME TO MY HUSBAND AND NOT WITH YOU, AND I will always be fierce."

Now, I'm not a smart man. So I went to a dictionary: A verb in Jane's sentence.
Ruin- ru·in (rōō'ĭn)
v. tr.

To destroy completely; demolish.
To harm irreparably.
To reduce to poverty or bankruptcy.
To deprive of chastity.
v. intr.
To fall into ruin.

I will even try to use ruin in a sentence a couple times.

Jane's wedding was ruined when a group of well-funded European terrorists with automatic weapons took everyone hostage.

When I was 12 years old, Christmas was ruined when I found my father under the christmas tree dead of a heart attack on Christmas morning.

Boy, ruin sure seems like a negative term. Why would a man's night be ruined if "These exchanges have, more then once, turned into her finding the happily wife’d up man of the group, tell them all about T, he gushes back about his lady, they buy each other drinks and simply enjoy the company of a new friend and since neither was interested, it was just fun to talk to someone of the opposite sex." In fact, why would Jane be trying to ruin anyone's night? By preceding the act of "RUIN(ing) YOUR NIGHT BY GOING HOME TO MY HUSBAND AND NOT WITH YOU, by talking about how she will " GET YOU TO BUY ME THAT BOTTLE OF VUEVE NYC CHICK.", it seems an awful lot like one thing has to do with the other. That's where I get this idea of manipulating and conning from, which I surely didn't pull out of midair. There is no way can paint that sentence in the positive light. I double doggy dare you to try to. Using the word ruin implies manipulation, and that she is happy to be hurting this man by having him buy her a drink, but then going home to her husband, and not him.

I am sure Jane wouldn't want one of her single female friends nights ruined because her friend hit it off with a guy at a bar, they went back to her place, and "hooked up", but he ruined her night by going home to his fiancee, or wife or girlfriend.

Amanda said...

Originally, I found it quite crass to make a comment that you dropped out of school and have an IQ of 75. I didn’t really see the point in making a joke like that and then I realized the following:
(A) Your reading comprehension is slightly askew.
(B) It seems that talking down to others is the only way you know how to get your point across. Having an intellectually stimulating conversation (via Blog Comments) without speaking, (er, writing) in a condescending tone is equally rewarding. You should try it.
1. I guess I didn’t make it clear enough that my rebuttal wasn’t to defend Jane about what she said. (Read: “… My first reaction is to defend my buddy, but I know her and she’s more than capable of doing that herself. I’m actually speaking on behalf of the wonderful men in my life.”)
I didn’t say that WHAT JANE MEANT BY “ruining your night” was 1, 2, 3 and 4. I said, Jane writes her blog to make people laugh. But 1, 2, 3 and 4 is what she ACTUALLY does. But thanks for the giving me the meaning of “ruin”. It’s nice to see that even those with a borderline deficient IQ can utilize the copy and paste function.
2. “I am sure Jane wouldn't want one of her single female friends nights ruined because her friend hit it off with a guy at a bar, they went back to her place, and "hooked up", but he ruined her night by going home to his fiancee, or wife or girlfriend.” – Now, isn’t that exactly what you said all single/married men are out there doing? Taking revenge on poor single women because they got their hearts broken one day? Allow me to refresh your memory:
“Secondly, have you ever wondered why men aged 25-40 ENJOY SLEEPING WITH WOMEN, AND NOT CALLING THEM AGAIN? OR PLAYING ON THEIR FEARS OF BEING A CAT LADY, SEDUCING THEM AND REFUSING TO COMMIT? The answer is of course that men have the memory of an elephant, and REMEMBER ALL THE TIMES WOMEN USED THEM (LIKE YOU SAY YOU PLAN TO) OR HURT THEM. Men remember how women play them and trick them like this. SO WHEN MEN GET TO THE AGE WHERE THEY HAVE POWER, AND A WOMAN'S BIOLOGICAL CLOCK IS TICKING, THEY ALMOST GET ENJOYMENT OUT OF GETTING REVENGE FOR THE THINGS WOMEN DO TO THEM.”
That’s what you said. That’s what I reacted to. You reacted to “ruin”… and I reacted to that completely false statement about the men (aged 25-40) that I have in my life. So I guess we don't have much left to talk about since you're standing by that statement.
Dear UnPlain,
Please refrain from using the word "ruin" in your blog. It hurts Carl's feelings.
Very truly yours,
Amanda