Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Do the Math...

My first marriage started almost ten years ago (April) and ended just a few months later, on July 4, 1997 in a spectacular way.

The issue was my son. One day, wife #1 decided that he was a problem. Specifically, she was being inconvenienced by him; I was in the middle of a bitter custody fight with my ex-girlfriend. It was ugly, yes. It inconvenienced her, yes. But he was three years old. I was the only father, and only stable parent he had. There were, at that point, about 2.5 billion women on the planet, including my wife. Between her and my son, guess who was going to win that one?

With that in mind, I read a couple of news stories and wondered how people can get to important positions and have such poor judgment.

First comes San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsome. He won a really tough race to become mayor, probably largely thanks to a long-trusted aide Alex Tourk, who ran his campaign.

So how does Newsome thank Tourk? By boinking his wife.

Now, here's a rich, handsome, relatively young (39) guy who's mayor of one of my favorite cities. I've been to San Francisco. I'm a middle-aged, middle-class schlub with no wealth or power, and I've been hit on by pretty women there in San Francico (before I was married, of course, to my lovely wife). So of all the now 3 billion women on the planet, of the hundreds of thousands of available women just in the Bay Area, he has to schtup the wife of the guy who got him to where he was. This is, to say the least, astonishingly bad judgement, even when drunk.

Even if he loses the election in Novemember, he'll still be a rich business owner. His life is not ruined. I can't say the same about astronaut Lisa Marie Nowak.

Capt. Nowak achieved the childhood dream of many, many guys-- including myself-- and became a NASA astronaut. Imagine for a moment the discipline and drive it took to get to her job.

Now she is in jail charged with many charges including attempted kidnapping, attempted vehicle burglary with battery, destruction of evidence and battery.

She was having a relationship with another astronaut. She found out he was seeing someone else. Now, what should she have done? Dumped his lame ass and moved on. She is successful and good-looking. She shouldn't have much trouble, again, finding another guy, maybe even a single, faithful, nice guy in the pool of 3 billion men on this planet. Instead, she drove hundreds of miles non-stop, wearing a diaper so that she did not have to stop for a washroom break and attempted to kidnap her loser boyfriend's other flame.

In one swoop, she has ruined her life. All the years of work, gone. I guarantee no one will trust her to fly in space again. She'll be the punchline on every talk show tonight. Even if she can get the charges reduced and get off with supervision, her life and career are ruined. Over a guy. And if she was going to terrorize someone, why wasn't it the guy? He was the asshole!

I can't say that I'm the smartest guy in the world. I'm not the mayor of San Francisco. I'm not an astronaut. But when it's come to choices I made, I've done the math. There is always someone else out there who will appreciate you and understand what's important to you.

Or at the very least isn't married to the person who's going to run your campaign.


Flannery Alden said...

Sometimes people are so stupid, especially when they give themselves over completely to their id.

Natalie said...

People are real stupid. You don't have to be smart to be in politics but they don't let just anyone up in space. Sometimes smart people are the stupidest of all.

Leazwell said...

Surely NASA conducts in depth psychological testing before they allow people into their program. How did she get through????

kim said...

Gavin Newsome is pretty damn hot, though.

Erik Donald France said...

Great post. These were bizarre stories. The mayor one less so, more typical arrogance (conscious or not) of people in power, I suppose (and I like Bill Clinton, but still -- how dumb in certain cases a la Natalie's comment.)

The astronaut, a Navy captain -- I read that she's married and has two or three kids on top of everything else. Maybe or maybe not. Either way, wacky, driven mad by jealousy and possibly unrequited love. Scary. But a good story will come of it. Lifetime Original.

Glad your second wife is a better match. That's nice going into Valentine's Day period.

Palette said...

This is wife #3, if I am not mistaken? But surely the best (and last) wife you shall ever have.

Erik Donald France said...

Ah well, third wife's the charm, then! (I've been married twice, so can appreciate it)

From Wikipedia. already up and running with a heavily documented article, which makes the case even stranger:

"Nowak is married to Richard T. Nowak, a flight controller in Mission Control for the International Space Station,[2] and they have three children, a teenaged son born in 1992 and twin daughters born in 2001.[3] Her hobbies include reading, piano, gardening, and crossword puzzles.[4] She is a Roman Catholic."

Dave said...

Ironic thing is that boinking Mrs.Tourk was exactly how I planned on celebrating the victory.
Crazy world.

Johnny Yen said...

The New York Times is indeed now referring to her as a "married mother of three." She's been released on $25,000+ bail. She has to wear an ankle bracelet. This makes it all the more bizarre and sad.

You are indeed right, Palette. Third time's the charm. You probably guessed that she's exactly who I was referring to when I said "someone else out there who will appreciate you and understand what's important to you." She and I accepted the children each of us brought into the marriage as our own.

And the rest of you have probably figured out that Palette is one of my wife Kim's and my dear friends.

Anon. Blogger said...

As you know, I blogged about this, too. While I have never, could never, would never, risk my children for a man, I can understand how a person can be so void of self appreciation or the appreciation of another that they would cling to the closest somewhat caring being that showed them kindness.... that's why I felt sorry for her and wondered how bad she must have been feeling to tank her life this way. While I can relate to the feeling, I can not relate to finding a way to survive without destroying yourself and your children, even if it takes longer and more work.

But I am soooo with you on the responsibility of the guy in this. I don't *blame* him, but why did this woman's anger manifest itself at *her* instead of *him*? Maybe he was just too dense to see how much she depended on him emotionally.

I theorize that it was her dependence on his attention, or whatever the payoff was in their relationship.

I'm not sure that emotional dependence is something that the NASA psychological testing screens. It probably screens for ability to deal with stress. Emotional needs are a different thing, I think.

Sorry so long. It facinates me.

Anon. Blogger said...

should read, "can not relate to NOT finding a way"... sorry

lulu said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
lulu said...

She wore a diaper so she didn't have to stop for potty breaks? That's seriously fucked up. More fucked up than the kidnapping part.

Toccata said...

Do we know in fact whether or not she was having an affair with the astronaut? I have heard reports that kind of hint at the idea that she was only involved in her own mind.

I feel for her kids. Yikes, I would not want my mom plastered all over the news 24/7 looking like hell and always with the line, drove while diapers!