I did not do well in high school, get scholarships for college, break up my boyfriend before college in order to experience the full campus experience, do well in college, start dating S., get engaged, move to North Carolina, put S. through graduate school, get married, move to West Virginia, move to Pittsburgh, graduate with my MFA and honors, move to Michigan, get an actual writing job, and support S. as he goes through law school…
all to fight about whether he watches sports or spends time with me.
But here we are. So, ladies, be warned. Even if your man claims to love reading, antiquing, taking romantic weekend trips in the country -even if he cooks you dinners, does your ironing, promises to be a fully involved father when the time comes, even if HE IS THE MOST PERFECT SPECIMEN, YOUR SOUL MATE, THE ONLY PERSON YOU COULD EVER SPEND THE REST OF YOUR LIFE WITH, I can now confidently say there will come a time when there will be you, and there will be the first pre-season football game, and you will come in second. And it will bad, bad medicine. And yes, you can fight it. You can point out all the other things he gets to do, and you dramatically call up old insults and injuries, and you will find it absolutely unbelievable that at one time you had a liberated, loving man who made blueberry cakes with cinnamon icing and agreed, that, you know, women’s voices were so utterly crushed by the Elite Male Power Structure in This Country, but you will not win.
Probably there are dozens of ways to handle this situation – I’ve decided to give S. beer money and send him on his way, while remaining utterly amazed that the hundreds of tiny steps I took in my life to avoid exactly this sort of argument have landed me in the middle of every bad sitcom on television, that suddenly, there is the game, and there is the wife, and that, simply, is that.