New York’s Last Seduction: Loving Mr. Big
A fortyish movie producer I’ll call Samantha Jones walked into Bowery Bar, and, as usual, we all looked up to see whom she was with. Samantha was always with at least four men, and the game was to pick out which one was her lover. Of course, it wasn’t really much of a game, because the boyfriend was too easy to spot. Invariably, he was the youngest, and good-looking in that BHollywood actor kind of way – and he would sit there with a joyously stupid expression on his face (if he had just met Sam) or a bored, stupid look on his face, if he had been out with her a few times. If he had, it would be beginning
To dawn on him that no one at the table was going to talk to him. Why should they, when he was going to be history in two weeks?
We all admired Sam. First of all, it’s not that easy to get twenty-five-yearold guys when you’re in your early forties. Second, Sam is a New York inspiration. Because if you’re a successful single woman in this city, you have two choices: You can beat your head against the wall trying to find a relationship, or you can say “screw it” and just go out and have sex like a man.
Thus: Sam. This is a real question for women in New York these days. For the first time in Manhattan history, many women in their thirties to early forties have as much money and power as men – or at least enough to feel like they don’t need a man, except for sex. While this paradox is the topic of many an analytic hour, recently my friend Carrie, a journalist in her mid-thirties, decided, as a group of us were having tea at the Mayfair Hotel, to try it out in the real world. To give up on love, as it were, and throttle up on power, in order to find contentment. And, as we’ll see, it worked. Sort of.
TESTOSTERONEWOMEN, FOOLISH MEN
“I think I’m turning into a man,” said Carrie. She lit up her twentieth
cigarette of the day, and when the maitre d’hotel ran over and told her to put it out, she said, “Why, I wouldn’t dream of offending anyone.” Then she put the cigarette out on the carpet.
“You remember when I slept with that guy Drew?” she asked. We all
Nodded. We were all relieved when she had, because she hadn’t had sex for months before that. “Well, afterwards, I didn’t feel a thing. I was like, Gotta go to work, babe. Keep in touch. I completely forgot about him after that.”
“Well, why the hell should you feel anything?” Magda asked. “Men don’t. I don’t feel anything after I have sex. Oh sure, I’d like to, but what’s the point?”
We all sat back smugly, sipping tea, like we were members of some special club. We were hard and proud of it, and it hadn’t been easy to get to this point – this place of complete independence where we had the luxury of treating men like sex objects. It had taken hard work, loneliness, and the realization that, since there might never be anyone there for you, you had to take care of yourself in every sense of the word.
“Well, I guess it’s a lot of scar tissue,” I said. “All those men who end up disappointing you. After a while, you don’t even want to have feelings anymore. You just want to get on with your life.”
“I think it’s hormones,” said Carrie. “The other day, I was in the salon
Getting a deep-conditioning treatment because they’re always telling me my hair is going to break off. And I read in Cosmo about male testosterone in women – this study found that women who have high levels of testosterone are more aggressive, successful, have more sex partners, and are less likely to get married.