Sunday, October 28, 2012

get out of town!

Dear Readers:  You may have noticed that this blog hasn't been featuring as many posts these days about my solo weekend excursions, and not as many weekends squirreled up with netflix : ) .

It's fall, and that means I'm hosting many more events to support my business, creating lots of new workshops (more on that in subsequent posts), and receiving many more invitations:  birthdays (big 4-0 for some), book signings, theatrical friends appearing in plays around town, traveling to out-of-town trainings . . . ahhh, the make-the-best-of-it loneliness of summer has passed!

Photo at left is from a recent weekend in San Francisco.  While shopping on Haight Street, I thought it was fun to see an Asian-style altar to Jesus.

Hope you, too, are enjoying an overflow of social invitations.  And, from the 40+ Solo Weekender, look forward to more Chicago single excursion notes (when the odd solo weekend occurs), plus guest blog posts from a few out-of-the-ordinary relationship experts -- targeted toward those who are yearning for a partner in crime : )~

Sunday, October 21, 2012

how long until I vote you off the island?

Wesley Bedrosian
Very interesting article this month in The Atlantic -- which is somehow becoming my go-to source for the straight-talking contemporary women's point of view : ) .  (See links bar for more from The Atlantic.)

What happens when you no longer need your spouse for financial support, you're working yourself to death, and he's sitting around the house pursuing his interests and acting like one of the kids?  You're doing the 60-hour work week, most of the housework, and coordinating everyone's schedule.  He's on Cloud 9.  Hmmm.  Could life after divorce be the reward at the end of a disappointing marriage?  Does the husband step up more after divorce than he ever did during the marriage?

Here's an excerpt from "The Weaker Sex:  How Long Until I Vote You Off the Island?":
To answer this question, join me for a dinner party in Los Angeles. Have some white sangria and some pesto hummus—they’re from Whole Foods. To set the scene: we, this evening’s chorus, are divorced professional mothers (DPMs) who have adjusted, several years in, to life after marriage. Our children are fine. Their success no doubt owes a great deal to our largely graduate-level educations and our upper-middle-class income bracket, in which, interestingly, divorce is as rare now as it was in the 1950s. Although none of our exes initially welcomed divorce, in practice we’ve found our joint-custody arrangements to be surprisingly stable. Not to get too Ayn Rand on you, but although utopian thinking, nostalgic sentimentality, and even fear of confrontation may cloud communication during marriage, in post-marriage, both parties are forced to be realistic and rigorously accountable regarding kids’ schools, lessons, and pickups and drop-offs, and of course the finances. This clarity has, in turn, sparked a new appreciation for the benefits our children’s fathers bring. How happily our exes whisk the kids off to wholesome activities like swimming and camping and baseball, as we DPMs enjoy a lazy terrace supper together, easy in the knowledge that afterward we can go home, get into our flannel nightgowns, knit, and watch The Cheese Nun without being, to anyone, a colossal disappointment.
“To our exes,” says our hostess, Kate, lifting a glass.
“Hear, hear,” we reply, lifting ours.
At that moment, the front door blows open. Enter Annette, the only woman still in her original marriage, an hour late. She’s texted ahead her drink order and is thus handed a stiff vodka diet tonic with a wedge of lemon, as she launches into the story of … the lightbulb.
Surprisingly (or perhaps, not surprisingly), husbands can be much more valuable allies as ex-husbands than they ever were while in the marriage.  Intrigued?  Read the whole entertaining and seriously informative story by Sandra Tsing Loh.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Mrs Palfrey at The Claremont

An addition to your contemplations-on-the-single-life film library, this is a wonderful, and non-sentimental, look at the last days of Sara Palfrey, a sensible middle-class widow played by wonderful British actress (and DBE) Joan Plowright.  She wasn't the last wife of Laurence Olivier for nothing.

A meditation on the kindness of strangers, this one gets you thinking about what is really important as you go through midlife and through the looking glass into the beyond:  the far vistas of old age.  A direction in which most of us are a little afraid to look.

Plowright plays a senior heroine who is a real, multi-dimensional person with a handle on her own destiny. Not just the garden-variety little old lady at the mercy of her children.  A good one for a crisp fall day.