Did you know swans are of the few creatures, proactive in their decision to choose a mate for life? They strive for monogonomy and it seems even a feathered bird with a brain the size of a ping-pong ball knows which side their Hovis is buttered and could teach our British footie players a thing or six about playing home vs. away games. But it’s not just football players who are busy getting jiggy. In the UK we have the BBC’s Andrew Marr, in the US there’s TV gold, Kelsey Grammer and in the French corner we have esteemed business man, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, all revealed to have cheated on their respective partners.
So on a more positive note my quest is to understand how to avoid being partnered with this type of eejit and today’s blog is inspired by the notion of monogamy. Being sexually faithful, to one person only. Generally, something the majority of us strive for unless you’re a swinger, polygamist, footballer, ex governor, head of the IMF or chimpanzee.
I’m fascinated why certain demographics of aforementioned eejits are unable to keep it in their pants and remain faithful? And why does it appear more acceptable for men to spread the love than their female counterparts? Interestingly, Anthea Turner is still described as a home wrecker following her affair over a decade ago, (or is this how they describe her husband Grant’s latest property venture?) whereas Beckham, amongst certain groups, assumes an almost stud like credibility following his alleged dalliances. Is modern day society regressing and permitting it to be more socially acceptable to play away if you are born a man? Kind of primeval wouldn’t you say.
It’s also interesting how the notion of being faithful is subject to interpretation. In my book, if you’re in a committed relationship and engage in coital activities with another, this is cheating, it’s wrong! Maybe we’re struggling with the term, ‘in a committed relationship’? Pray, let me clarify; one where both parties have agreed to forsake all others and love, cherish, honour and respect each other. I am referring to the verbal deal we make as consenting adults, created by two individuals with or without the constitution of marriage as a prevailing factor. To commit to being in a relationship together. Capiche?
But what about the morality issue, surrounding separated, married types who have walked out on their marriages, who are legally separated and actively pursuing a divorce, yet over time have moved on emotionally and physically? Technically this is adulterous behaviour as the extra curricular affairs are being conducted within the confines of a ‘relationship’; a marriage? But arguably these are no longer ‘committed’ relationships as one party has decided to move on. Peeps, I’ll let you take this one up with God. But let’s all just take a moment and spare a thought for those poor adulterous separated American’s, whose legal system is so convoluted, open to interpretation and lengthy, if they had waited for a divorce to be granted before physically/emotionally moving on, their privates may become fossilized. (Note to American separated inconsolable wives: fossils are prehistoric and therefore of value, be sure to include his privates on your financial affidavit.) Adjourned!
So none the wiser in my quest to understand how to spot a faithful chap, I move on and question, where’s it all going Peter Tong?* Within a relationship, what is the defining moment to cause one of the parties to stray? Maybe the term ‘in a committed relationship’ is subject to interpretation and differs between the genders? I wonder. I once was invited on a date with a gorgeous, seemingly charming, intelligent New Yorker. My instincts kicked in at dinner when he struggled to muster up a palatable conversation. My indicator this guy was unhappily married with kids. So are you married I questioned in my most nonchalant of ways? Separated he answered. Now slightly irked this guy had taken up a precious evening of mine I decided to pull out the stops as wasn’t buying his story. Separated I repeated back to him through clenched teeth. Are you having a physical relationship with your partner/ do you live with her/ are you committed to creating a future with her and planning on eventually becoming reunited? He looked at me as if I were having an out of body experience. I promptly ordered the cheque and excused myself from this lothario’s tasting menu.
I don’t have to be Inspector Clouseau to know this man was living at home, unhappily within the confines of a sexless relationship. His nagging wife, I’m assuming understood there were relationship problems, perhaps sex was off the table for them, but Mr NY had decided to seek relief elsewhere before doing the right thing and either committing to mending their relationship with kindness and love or to proactively and honestly breaking the bond by announcing its end. Note to Mr NY: had we begun a relationship as you had suggested, we would be cheating, unfaithful, NOT being monogamous. All wrong. Sprechen sie Deutsch!
So for all readers, with the exception of US lawyers and politicians around the world, the definition of being monogamous should now be crystal clear.
For those still confused by the concept, I suggest asking your partner if you’re permitted to have sex with anyone other than them. If they a/scream b/look at you with utter disbelief saying nothing or c/faint, that’ll be a big fat super sized no. N O for the hard of hearing (and footballers.) I’m going to write it phonetically for Giggs; NOOHHHH
Which dovetails me nicely to my next question about the type of person who cheats. In the UK, footballers seem to be the philanderers of the moment and every day it seems a new affair is being written about. So what’s the deal with this most sharing of all men, the footballer? Does being fit, having a big ego, wealthy beyond sensibility and intellectually challenged automically defer this demographic to a life of philandering? Abbey Clancy, the gal dating Peter Crouch, seems lovely hosting ITV’s This Morning amongst many other successful projects she turns her delicately manicured, heavily carated hand to. As a former lingerie model, saying she is visually rewarding, is as accurate as describing Kirstie Alley as looking bloated, Abbey is a stunner. She earns her own cash and her name has yet to appear on the ‘guest list’ at The Priory hospital. On paper she seems like the perfect girl/partner, but who knows what the reality is behind closed doors. So what’s the deal with Crouch and the moose look-alike he allegedly slept with whilst dating Abbey? Are Ms Rocky’s (moose) values and morals more in tune with Master Bullwinkle (Crouch)? Do they connect on an emotional and spiritual level in a way him and Abbey could never? I wonder if my suggested rational for his behaviour is non sequitur to Crouch and he simply cheated as a means to having sex? Crouch chose to return, with his communal appendage, to his loyal fiancée Abbey and I’m hoping that whatever was broken, causing him to stray, has now been firmly sellotaped back together. Including the vase I hope Abbey lamped him with.
Arnold Schwarzenegger was also recently caught with his pants down, literally. So how does his character differ from the stereotypical footballer? Well Arnie’s fit – check,ego’d to the hilt, richer than many small countries – check check, but here’s the difference, as the ex Govenor of California he must be intellectually endowed. Which disproves my theory about only dumb men cheating. Well only slightly. Talk about muddying your own doorstep. Maria will ensure this Terminator gets to eat his infamous words, ‘..I’ll be back…’ Because once she’s finished with him, I’ll bet no one will want ever want to see anything other than his back. But what was Schwarzenegger’s motivation? Why choose his housekeeper to have sex with? It’s not as if he can’t afford the bus fare to enjoy a night out in town or even in another town where he’s less likely to be caught out.
So in a 360degree turn I’m right back at the animal kingdom and turning to them for inspiration and my final Jerry Springer style thought. Wondering whether their selection of monogamous creatures can teach us a thing or two about relationships? I’d like to believe that like wolves and eagles, swans are all a bunch of new romantics, committed to developing life long bonds and riding together through life’s ups and downs in harmony with each other. Being loving and respectful of each other despite the challenges, temptations and inevitable complexities life may present.
Of course Mills and Boon don’t edit real life sadly and I’m starting to question whether this birds choice to remain exclusive is one ‘Big Fat Gypsy Swan Lie.’ Perhaps there are swans in a duck pond near you slapping super injunctions and gagging orders on hot drakes aka Giggs style or else they’ve been police escorted to a safe duck house, Strauss -Khan style. Can you imagine this Far Side esq scene! But sadly I need to interrupt this make believe moment to deliver a devastating truth I just unearthed via Google: Experts have told of their surprise after witnessing a rare “divorce” between a pair of swans at a Gloucestershire wildfowl sanctuary. The Bewick’s swans have returned to winter at the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust centre at Slimbridge – but both have brought new partners.
Sadly it seems, even the beautiful tale of a swan’s eternal love is no longer sacred.
* For any American’s reading this, Pete Tong is rhyming slang, semi intelligent British humour (super semi). Pete Tong = wrong. Oh that’s Easter bunny! Get it? = Funny.