Floating

Marriage: FAQ

Nobody wanted this.

The Temptation of St. Anthony by Dorothea Tanning (1946)

Q: Is it healthy to stay married forever?

A: No! Marriage is an abomination that high-level capitalist tricksters have used to keep women bound, gagged, and trussed up in uncomfortable push-up bras for the length of their days on the planet. Actually, uncomfortable push-up bras are pretty great. I like them now. But marriage is total bullshit.


Q: What is good about marriage?

A: Almost nothing! Who wants to sleep inches away from the same smelly human every night (like a common criminal) until you’re dead? I keep saying this and I feel like no one is listening, least of all the horrid old motherfucker who seems to be inches away from me at all times, even during daylight hours!

On the other hand, my husband is at this moment driving my daughter to get her allergy shots across town. When he gets back, I will be showering for my dinner with a friend tonight. Around the time he is fetching some form of dinner for our girls, I’ll be stuffing my incredible tits into an uncomfortable push-up bra and then leaving the house in order to drink a gin cocktail with my delightful friend, who likes to tell me tall tales about her open marriage, a form of marrying that is reputedly far less awful than the more restrictive style of uncomfortably traditional marriage that I am pushed up into at the moment. With an open marriage, you get to be fucking new men regularly! It sounds incredible, truly!


Q: What is terrible about marriage?

A: When I come home from my dinner tonight, sated by fine conversation with my whip smart friend and soothed by a couple of gin cocktails, I am likely to find that my girls are in bed (this is not a metaphor for my amazing tits resting in their very pushed-up bra, here I am talking about my actual daughters). My husband, who has fed the children and dogs, loaded the dishwasher, and tidied up, will be just tired enough to be pushed up into various vigorous sexing acts. Same old shit! And yet, there he is, pliant and willing. Why not, right? Oh well, ho hum. Pretty awful. Then I’ll put my girls to bed (now I’m talking about my tits) and go to sleep.


Q: Marriage does not sound so terrible at all, in fact.

A: Oh, but it is so terrible! For if I desire to, say, engage in vigorous sex acts with someone BRAND NEW because after all THE PLANET IS DYING, guess what? I cannot do so without getting actual verbal permission from my spouse! How degrading and archaic!


Q: Will your husband give you actual permission to have sex with other people?

A: I am very much hoping that he will! He says he won’t but I am very, very much hoping that he changes his mind! He says it’s “my choice,” with this ridiculous resigned sigh (“Please don’t make unnecessary noises using your face!” I always tell him) but he would vastly prefer that I not have sex with anyone else. He says “Don’t we have enough sex already?” The answer is yes, we do, but wouldn’t it be even better to have even more sex with people one is much less married to and therefore barely knows at all? The answer is yes, of course, it is better, much much much much much much much much much better.

Maybe as his mind grows more feeble, he will become more open to brand new ideas about letting his wife fuck whomever she pleases, whenever she pleases. Fingers crossed!


Q: What else do you think will happen when your husband gets very old and is less vital and pliant?

A: I am so pleased that you asked this question, because I ponder it often! As far as I can discern, my husband is likely to decay rapidly. He has always been absentminded (very professorial of him!) and he has exceedingly bad knees. I’m optimistic I can hire some kind of an orderly to wheel my husband around the house and spoon chocolate pudding with crushed-up pills into his mouth and so forth, freeing up my time for thinking big thoughts and writing little ditties on my guitar and whatnot.

Occasionally, the orderly will wheel my husband into a walk-in closet or storage area and then we can have some sex (me and the orderly, not me and my husband) and then we can go somewhere fun like a piano bar or a salsa club or SPAIN, and after that, of course, we’ll have lots more sex, athletic-style sex preferably. Or maybe we’ll have the slow type of sex. We’ll fuck meaningfully. I can’t decide. Maybe first with meaning and feeling, and then later…

Anyway suffice it to say, I am very much looking forward to my golden years with my dear husband. Marriage is very satisfying during one’s golden years!


Q: Why are you still married if you hate it so much?

A: Who said I hated marriage? It is a widely-known fact that marriage is hopelessly dull and utterly inhumane, but if I were to divorce my actual husband, there would be no one here to feed my girls (here I mean my daughters) when I go out to dinner with friends, and there would be no pliant male in my bed to feed my girls (here I mean my tits) upon returning from dinner, and there would be no university pension dollars to pay for my sexy orderly (who will also be a trained masseuse and will sing all of Cole Porter’s greatest tunes in the finest baritone) (and who will also be a chef of some sort) (and a therapist) (he will write poems, too) (he’ll always have good weed on his person) (I love him so much already!).

Without marriage I would while away my days in a cramped, cluttered apartment, microwaving frozen foods and watching Real Housewives marathons with my girls (my daughters and my tits, all four of them).

Marriage is horrifying and I strongly recommend it!


A few weeks ago, my boring twat of a twin wrote about nurturing restless desires without being consumed by shame and then she wrote about how sometimes we all want to do the exact opposite of what’s best for us and last week she wrote about how replacing your shame with curiosity fixes everything. She’s not a complete idiot but you should still write to me instead: askmolly@protonmail.com.

Weather

You like it or not.

The False Mirror (1928) by René Magritte

Don’t let anyone tell you the moral to your story.

Tell them:

You are a weatherman.

I am the weather.

Tell them:

You study numbers and graphs and patterns and indexes, and when I walk into the room and the pressure drops and solar radiation skyrockets, you talk in even tones and point to your charts and draw straight, careful lines instead of studying my irises until the room is spinning, instead of tracing the constellation of moles on my forearm until your hands are on fire, instead of running your burning fingertips through my hair, instead of sharply inhaling saltwater until the death of the planet grips you by the throat.

Once you look up from your charts, you’ll understand everything. Finally.

Then you’ll wake up in the morning and your pulse will blink like a radar, tracing the earth’s motion in space. Instead of slapping that big red H next to the latest high pressure system (goddamn your job is stultifying, just admit it), saltwater will pour out of your eyes and you’ll rip the H in half and kick the teleprompter across the room and Greg will have to cut to commercial and Dionne will say what the fuck man but when you open your mouth, all that will come out is the sound of water rising and cities drowning.

It’s probably best if you don’t know. But it’s too late now, isn’t it? You keep squinting at indexes, but your skin is awash in errant global circulation patterns, with a swirling gyre of heat and energy near the equator. It’s not my fault, motherfucker. Give this story any moral you want. Bring the full force of your Doppler 7000 to bear on this madness — it doesn’t bend the tempest. Convection currents will span your cells from pole to pole, forever and ever, Amen. There is nothing to be done.

I suggest you surrender to the storm. Resistance will only make you sick. Denying divine intervention is another way of treating your own body like a bad child, like a shitty employee, like a prisoner. You can honor the divine without burning your life to the ground. Why doesn’t anyone understand that anymore?

No one wants you to drown. But once these thicc air masses hit that tropical ocean, you’ll be sweating whether you like it or not. At least go take a shower and notice how vulnerable you feel, because you are vulnerable. Your fragile ecosystem is poised to crumble. Resilience and structural integrity are built on pragmatism and honesty, not denial.

I’m just trying to help. Once you believe in the sublime, you don’t get a charge from blowing doors off their hinges and collapsing roofs with your battering gale. Once you honor divinity, you don’t send a tornado to carry other people’s stuff away. I have no interest in theft, but I draw the line at denying reality. I don’t care which particular garbling of temperatures and altitudes led to this moment. I’m not concerned with Greg’s miscalculations or Dionne’s misdirected cues. A single breaker may recede, but the tide is evidently coming in.** I won’t let anyone’s misguided cautionary tale trick me into believing that my jet stream is malevolent, that my walls made of water are bent on catastrophic ends, that the only solution is to scatter these clouds and disappear forever.

This cyclone won’t disperse, even if I wanted it to. When will you understand how powerless we are?

Facing reality is much less stressful than living inside a fantasy world. You think I’m the one who’s hallucinating. You think I’m encouraging my own fragility. But this is what’s real. It makes sense to feel defenseless as the seas heat past boiling. It makes sense to surrender your bloodstream to atmospheric rivers beyond your control.

This is not a sales pitch. This is not an early warning system. This is not a threat. This is not a fantastical escape route from the mundane. This is reality.

Justice rides in on a cold front, stirring you from sleep, seducing you with a shiver down your spine that says Fight for every songbird. You can save at least one.

This is an act of generosity, not greed. Don’t be so afraid of unstable air. Walk outside and feel the snowflakes land your eyelashes, then ask yourself what comes next.


** = A quote by Thomas Babington Macauley, a drama-loving British aristocrat and historian who savaged the populace with his aberrant notions on the supremacy of British civilization over the humble groove of blunt-smoking barbarians. Starchy crackers are just so afraid of stormy weather!

Surrender

How to Make Something Out of Nothing

This craft is easy, fun, and 100% free!

Trilogy of the Desert: Mirage (1946) by Salvador Dali

You’ve probably always thought that you can’t do much with nothing. Wrong again! The truth is, you can make all kinds of delightful, entertaining, even soul-destroying creations out of thin air, once you set your mind to it. And it won’t cost you a cent!

Here are the materials you’ll need to get started:

  • A whole lot of nothing

  • A vivid imagination

  • Some unfocused longing

  • The faintest masochistic streak


Step One:

Look around you. Got nothing? Well then, you’ve already begun!

Sit and focus on nothing for a second. What’s there? Why is it there? How did it get here? Keep focusing until a strange narrative springs to mind. “Wow, this has nothing to do with anything,” you’ll start to think. “And yet… it’s so vivid. I’m almost convinced that it… is…. something!”


Step Two:

Take that brief illusion that there is “something” there and cling to it. What flavor of something is this? What shape does it have? If this something were thrown onto a crowded bus with other people, what would happen? What if you put this something in the back seat of a car, what would that look like? What noise would it make? Would it happen to sound a little bit like a song by Lana Del Rey?

Listen to a song by Lana Del Rey.

OH MY GOD, IT DOES SOUND LIKE THAT. Now you’re onto something!


Step Three:

Meditate on this thin sliver of something you just created until it gets larger and more colorful. Keep focusing on it until it starts to crowd out everyday thoughts like “Have I eaten lunch yet?” and “Where are my pets right now?”


Step Four:

Now it’s time to tie this bit of vibrant something to some other, heavier part of your life, like your self-worth or your sex drive or your productivity. Wow, see how much more exciting and dramatic your something just got, now that it has a little concrete emotional weight to it? That’s what it’s all about, baby!


Step Five:

At this point, you’re likely find yourself saying, “Shit. I am sitting here making something out of nothing.”

Never do that. You don’t want to be left with nothing again, do you?


Step Six:

Start telling other people about your new crafting hobby. Ideally, you’ll interrupt their very normal, concrete conversations by saying things like, “I made something. Can you see it?” and “I would feel a lot better about everything in my life if this (gestures at nothing) weren’t taking up so much of my time and energy.”

Your friends will say stuff like “Um, that seems unhealthy.” and “Did you… forget to put on pants this morning?” But don’t let them discourage you! They’re just jealous of how creative you are.


Step Seven:

Work on your craft every morning, then spend the rest of the day whispering to yourself, “I am an artisan of nothing.” Purchase several black turtlenecks.


Step Eight:

Write a dozen long, rambling emails to friends explaining the joys of your special something. If they don’t write back immediately, send three or four more emails to clarify various parts of your first email that might’ve seemed confusing.


Step Nine:

Write a song about how there’s something here, even though it looks like there’s not. Cry as you sing. The more you cry, the more real your something becomes.


Step Ten:

Try to give up your craft project cold turkey, because it’s embarrassing and stupid. Then go online and find clear proof that you really shouldn’t give it up. The evidence is everywhere! It’s so obvious that you have to commit to this something forever and ever and never let it go.


Step Eleven:

Write a novel about this.


Step Twelve:

When your editor sends you notes that say, “Your protagonist seems delusional. What is she doing, exactly?” and “Have you considered seeking help from a mental health professional?”, fire her immediately and pay back your book advance. Don’t worry, you can find a new publisher who knows what’s what!


Step Thirteen:

Fail to find a new publisher who’s interested in your novel, but keep insisting that something is there, why can’t anyone fucking see it?


Step Fourteen:

Fuck your life into the ground over nothing. Repeatedly.


Step Fifteen:

Congratulations, you’re an artist!

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