Men are disappointing creatures, and I don’t say this in a political sense (although, that too). I just mean, from personal experience, dudes never fail to let me down at least a few times every year. I have a lot of male friends who are solid fucking dudes — and I count the existing male staff among them — but every year, I’m still blown away to find out that a guy I thought I knew isn’t who I thought he was. You go out with friends, and your married buddy starts scamming on women, or at the end of the night one guy has too much to drink and starts begging to go to the “titty bar,” or you find out that another friend has been cheating on his wife for months. Or you wake up one morning and discover that a guy you invited into your home is calling women “c*nts” on your website. Or you find out a great, married guy who sends your kids gifts on their birthday every year also sends unsolicited dick pics to random women he meets on the Internet. I remember when I was much younger, going to Vegas with some buddies from back in Arkansas — married, hard-core Christian dudes — and I stumbled back from playing blackjack at 3 a.m. only to find one of those upright, married guys escorting a prostitute up to his room. I was like, “Aw, dude. You’re one of those guys. Huh.” I had no idea.
You know, whatever: Cheating on your wife is not illegal, and I am not here to police a dude’s marriage. It’s not like I never made out with someone while dating someone else when I was younger or backslid and slept with an ex while I was dating someone new. It happens. And I mean, asking me to be your wing man so you can fuck a woman you met at a bar while your wife is out of town is not the end of the world, two consenting adults and all (I’m still not gonna help you, asshole). It’s just … disappointing, you know? I try not to judge because I don’t know their lives or their marriages, and marriages fall apart all the time for very good reasons (half our parents are divorced, right, and we still love some of them), but goddamn, it can be demoralizing. After Bill Clinton, after David Letterman, I should probably be used to it, and yet, I dunno. You try to believe the best in people, and it’s amazing how many times you can be let down, and it’s almost always because of dudes and their goddamn dicks.
I used to be unbelievably fascinated with adultery in literature, and what motivates it, what would drive a person to risk his marriage, his reputation, his life for a meaningless fling. Psychologically speaking, this is complicated terrain, rich for dissection, but after ten or 15 years, I lost interest. There’s no great secret. It mostly boils down to power and a lack of impulse control.
To wit: Kevin Hart, a man who cheated on his previous wife with his existing wife has been caught cheating on his current wife, while she was pregnant, allegedly on her birthday weekend. And whatever! It’s not illegal. This is not a Faraci situation, or a Polanski situation, or a Woody Allen situation. A dude got drunk and cheated on his wife, and he got caught. Happens every day. In this case, however, it went public after someone tried to blackmail Kevin Hart, and rather than pay the ransom, Kevin Hart confessed to his sins on Instagram, like you do. I guess.
It happens. And good for him for not allowing himself to be blackmailed. Letterman did the same thing — he confessed, and after I swallowed that huge ball of sadness over finding out that a guy I looked up to was as flawed as so many other dudes, I thought it was good that he didn’t allow himself to be exploited. So, uh, good for you, Kevin Hart. But damn it, it’s still so remarkably disappointing.