I’ve been walking around with a sketch of a uterus and cervix in my reporter’s notebook for several weeks now, courtesy of my gynecologist. She drew it while explaining to me how an IUD works. I keep it around both because I like it as a conversation piece and because when you write about ladyparts as much as I do, it’s actually quite useful as a reference tool at the office or, you know, the bar. Wherever.
But what I like best about my little IUD sketch is that I don’t need it, because my husband is getting a vasectomy. When it comes to long-term contraception that isn’t sterilization, vasectomies are the bee’s infertile knees. The benefits are many: I don’t have to live with a foreign body inside me (either of biological origin or one made of copper), condom breakage isn’t a constant concern, and neither do I have to rely on hormones or head back to my doctor’s office regularly for a Depo shot. Keep reading »
Last Friday night, Patrick and I took a break from drinking beers and talking smack about Mitt Romney to befriend two couples who happened by our neighborhood bar. They needed a place to sit; we offered to share our table. And as many newly engaged couples are, all four of them were a little bit … glowy. It was incredibly fun to hear about their wedding plans — we even may have talked one pair into holding a karaoke reception. But it also got me thinking about what I wish I’d known when “We’re getting married!” suddenly became a thing that was happening to me. Keep reading »
I woke up last Sunday morning — well, I don’t know that I was truly awake, but at least I wasn’t in bed any more — and stumbled to the kitchen for a giant glass of water with which to defuzz my thoroughly whiskey-fied mouth. In my hangover haze, I glanced across the living room to the coffee table, which held two empty glasses and a piece of old mail with my late-night scrawl on the back. It was a playlist.
We’d started with Darius Rucker’s new single, “True Believers,” because Patrick and I are true believers in pop country music. Now we are, anyways — I used to have more than a little detached irony mixed in with my Kenny Chesney appreciation, but that’s long since disappeared over the years of my relationship with Patrick, whose genuine love for the genre is both charming and contagious.
It’s becoming something of a tradition for the two of us: we spend a Saturday evening hanging out at the bar with a group of Austin feminists and allies that meet monthly to shore up our belief in the world being a livable place, and then we come home, drink whiskey on the rocks and watch music videos for hours. We sing along. We dance with each other. We trade stories about where we were when this or that song was popular. We debate the musical merits of the Zack Brown Band as musical successor to Jimmy Buffet. Keep reading »
Now that the summer wedding season is winding down, it’s time to shift the focus from the Big Day to the Big Rest Of Your Damned Lives. I’ve only been married for 129 days now, but my husband Patrick and I are starting to get a pretty good bead on how this thing works.
First of all, if you don’t already have a home garden, you’re going to want to get on that this weekend. Especially since (I think) it’s time to start planting fall tomatoes. I don’t know for sure because our tomato plants all died, I’m too lazy to actually Google it, and the only thing that survived our Texas summer was a wad of basil that’ll be great for caprese salads until sometime after the apocalypse.
Married people love gardens because it’s a fun, torturous and back-breaking activity you can do with your partner, plus you get to nitpick about the way your partner holds yard implements. The time to start nurturing heirloom vegetables and long-lasting resentment about minutiae is now! Keep reading »
Was your wedding not sexy enough? Did your nuptials not properly convey how utterly hot and sensual your relationship really is? Then maybe you should invest in some “morning after” wedding photography. Taken hours or days after a couple gets married, this new exhibitionist trend is aimed at showing how spicy new marriage can be. Keep reading »
One of the things I’ve learned, over my many years of roadtripping in and across Texas, is that hell is being stuck going 50 miles per hour behind a recreational vehicle. But recently, I’ve come to wonder if heaven might be being behind the wheel of one.
I don’t generally dream about buying big-ticket things like cars and houses. I’m a freelance writer, after all. At this point, saving even a few hundred dollars a year is a struggle — though that got significantly less stressful once I moved in with, and later married, my husband. Splitting rent and groceries and bills has taken significant pressure off my wheezing bank account — even more so than living with roommates.
So maybe that’s why I started letting myself fantasize about taking long trips to Marfa in a giant vehicle with a wildcat or a wolf emblazoned on the back. When I proposed this to Patrick, he was, as we say here in Texas, “raring to go.” Some couples dream of outfitting a nursery. Patrick and I dream of converting an engine to biodiesel and training the cats to ride shotgun. Keep reading »
In a couple of weeks, I’m going to be living it up in beautiful South Dakota. The occasion: my new grandma-in-law’s octogenarian birthday and combination family reunion. I hear there will be picnics and jet skis involved.
I am petrified.
But Andrea, how can you be petrified when there are jet skis involved, you ask? Well first off, I’m afraid of watercraft, so there’s that. But there’s also the fact that these jet skis belong to my new-in-law family, and what am I supposed to do around these perfectly nice, terrifying people for three whole days in beautiful rural South Dakota? Also, “beautiful rural South Dakota” is a few kinds of redundant, right? Keep reading »
The amazing thing about life is how many complete assholes manage to find someone willing to put up with their bullshit and marry them. When I was a single person, the thing that crushed me the most when I was feeling lonely wasn’t that I thought I’d never find a spouse. It was that Donald Trump did. Three times. Ben Roethlisberger? Totally married. Michele Bachmann! Married to another asshole. Michael Vick? Just spent $300,000 on his wedding this weekend. The “Real Housewives“? They are, by definition, married. I always wonder why self-help books and matchmaker shows bother shaming perfectly nice people into becoming “marriage material” when so many complete shits of human beings didn’t change a thing about themselves and still found love.
Of course, married assholes don’t have to be famous. They can be these assholes, who had a three-day wedding celebration that they made their guests cook and pay for. They could be this asshole, who dumped a bridesmaid because she was fat. Assholes get married all the time; sometimes because they were assholes before they got married. And sometimes the wedding process turns otherwise lovely people into assholes. The whole process is practically designed to do that to people. Keep reading »
I recently stumbled on the video of a bride singing Christina Aguilera’s “The Right Man” while she walked down the aisle, and I reacted so strongly that I startled myself. The video opened up a cavern of emotion that, while I knew it was there, went deeper than I realized. And that emotion was repugnance. To me, this serenade was not an act of love, but an act of vanity. I saw a woman in the midst of a performance that had nothing to do with how she felt about the man she was walking towards and everything to do with a fantasy she’d been playing out in her head since she was a little girl–groom TBD.
But self-aggrandizing brides aside, the bottom line of my repugnance was that I hate weddings. I think they have gotten so out of control that they have become intolerable, and I deeply resent being held hostage to their preposterous demands. For years I’ve faked my joy for brides and brides-to-be both out of respect and fear. I have put on a smile and cooed over dresses, shoes, cakes and flowers, partially because I usually do love the person the bride is when she is not a bride, but also because I am afraid that I will be shunned from the sisterhood if my disdain is discovered. Keep reading »