How to spot the man that's ready to marry...
...and stand in his way so that you become the bride. The theory behind today's iVillage advice column is pretty simple. Women always want to get married but men only have the urge at a brief point in time, so the object is to find a man who is caught by the urge, get in his sights, and he'll marry you.
The Sex and the City gang once compared a marriage-ready man to a taxi: At a certain point in his life, he becomes ready for commitment. His "available" light goes on and the next lady in his life gets the ring. Luckily for us, it's easy to tell the difference between a man who's got the light on and one who's just driving around in the dark.
I prefer another metaphor, where men and women are both flowers. Women are a hearty flower that's constantly in bloom. Men are like a hibiscious, which blooms only for a few hours, and if you don't catch the bloom, you miss it. I cannot tell you the number of times I've come home and my boyfriend is saying, "Oh there was a hibiscious bloom today, but you missed it." With men it's like, "Well, he might want to marry next week, but you just got here too early."
Apparently the good news is that you don't have to worry about niceties like falling in love and whatnot. Just as the hibiscious blooms regardless of who is there to see it, a man in bloom will apparently marry whatever woman is standing there, regardless of compatibility. This is good news. In case you forgot.
Onto the Four Signs He's Fixing to Bloom, I mean, Get Married.
*His Oat-Sowing Days Are Over
Malloy interviewed men from ages 17 to 70 who were about to marry; all admitted they felt increasingly out of place in the bars, pool halls and dance clubs that were once their favorite hangouts.
So, your best bet is to hang out in these places waiting for a guy to say, "Man, this just isn't as fun as it used to be." Say something charming, like, "Running off to Vegas would be pretty exciting, don't you think?"
Rob F's epiphany came via a shocking realization. The 36-year-old recently married lawyer from New York recalls, "I started not wanting to bed models because I'd have to struggle through a conversation afterward."
I'll bet pillow talk with him is scintillating. "Well, you're no model, but you sure are smart, baby."
*He's Financially Independent
Whatever. There are plenty of broke guys out there looking to marry someone who will take care of them. This entire section is skirting dangerously close to telling women that they should have standards when deciding whether to marry someone.
Julia, a 27-year-old Philadelphia paralegal, says, "I had a definite type: ski bums and musicians who waited tables to make money...." Instead of seeking out a drummer with six-pack abs, she met an accountant. He may have lacked a hard body, but he did have a loving heart and a steady job and, most importantly, the urge to merge. They're planning a wedding.
I'm detecting a trend here. Are they implying that marriage is the last resort for ugly people?
*He's Discovered His Desire to Be a Dad
That is, he realized that he needs someone with a womb to further his life goals. This might explain the "any woman will do as long as the time is right" subtext here.
Carol Morgan, a Boca Raton matchmaker (www.carolmorgan.com), observes, "He's ready for marriage when he stares longingly at kids and suggests you would have beautiful children."
If he asks for a reference letter from your gyno, a marriage proposal is coming soon!
I'll spare you the heart-warming story of a man who dumped his girlfriend for a woman who was more willing to have children.
*He's Your Boyfriend in Name -- Your Husband in Spirit
Carol Morgan adds, "He's honest and open, and when you enter the room he doesn't immediately make his computer screen go black so you can't see what he's doing.
After the wedding, of course, he'll go right back to looking at porn on the internet.
And if he makes room for you in his closet, baby, your single days are numbered.
And if it's room enough to hide a body, your days may be numbered altogether. Or that would be my guess, but I read too much true crime.
Malloy says that the key finding in his book about men and marriage was this: "Seventy-three percent of the women coming out of marriage-license bureaus with their future husbands told us that they put pressure on their man to get a proposal. In most cases, this pressure didn't involve an attempt to manipulate their man into marrying them but was simply a result of telling their man what they were feeling."
Let me get this straight. A woman asks a man if he wants to get married, but he still does the "proposing"? As long as there wasn't any manipulation, I guess.
And now for four signs you need to dump him rightaway, because he's not marriage-minded.
*Says he has no interest in tying the knot.
Throw him back and try again when he's in bloom, I guess. To mangle my metaphors.
*Buys a Porsche.
Or other high-end items that no man saving up for a ring or a future would purchase.
Screw the stupid diamonds. This is a Porsche! Enjoy it.
*Calls his married friends "losers."
What if they are losers?
*Continually makes you cry.
And they're not tears of happiness. If he's unreliable, abusive, a liar, cheat and/or uber-flirt, divorce yourself from this relationship before it takes a trip to court to do so.
Once again, skirting dangerously close to suggesting that a woman should have more standards than just willingness to marry.