If you pick up any glossy magazine that caters to the thirty-something middle-class heterosexual female demographic, you’re almost guaranteed to find an opinion piece on relationships. In fact, if you ever manage to find an issue that doesn’t have a relationship-themed article, you should tell the dentist’s receptionist that someone has been tearing pages out of their magazines.
The vaguely confusing message that emerges from these publications is that men are worthless, filthy things that you should nevertheless manipulate into marrying you. Perhaps I’m missing something here, but this seems severely counter-intuitive. Why would anyone would want to do a thing like that? After all, if you’re dating an “unhygienic, adolescent-minded ne’er-do-well who exists only to gratify himself and make you miserable” , surely you’d want to get away from him and not make the arrangement permanent in the eyes of the Law and Facebook?
It turns out that writers of relationship articles (and now that I think about it, my ex-wife) fervently believe that we unhygienic adolescent-minded ne’er-do-wells can be cured of our wayward ways. All it requires is for us to just grow up and stop being selfish. In other words, get married, have kids and buy a lawnmower. Of course, it rather begs the question – what’s in it for us?
Is it reasonable to expect us just do it and like it? Does the world really need more baybeez to secure the survival of the species? When you compare the fun factor of a lawnmower against that of a game console, how often does the lawnmower win? If you guessed “no”, “no” and “never”, give yourself a gold star.
Then again, this may offer some insight as to how the dowry custom came into being. If you’re going to do something you would normally avoid, it’s generally less painful if you get paid.