There were a lot of “B” movies made in the 1950’s that featured a particular type of female character: The Divorcee. She was bruised fruit, used but not owned, who had experiences that a virgin bride did not. A woman with carnal knowledge, worldly in the ways of the boudoir, a kitten with a whip that had moved from the big city to some bedroom community in search of a little peace and quiet.
But in the eyes of everyone in town, her raison d’etre was to lure unsuspecting married men to her lair where she would seduce them to within an inch of their lives, sporting nothing but a flimsy negligee and feather-topped mules. And supposedly, this Pied Piper of the boudoir spent all her free time trolling for sex, heat dripping from her every pore, awaiting the touch of the first man who came her way, while the respectable women in town alternated between scorning her and plotting to set her house on fire.
Recently, I have come to believe that his urban myth still reigns supreme in the eyes of men who long to prove its veracity, even though you wouldn’t compare the modern divorcee to the wanton creatures of those celluloid concoctions. At a party last week, I struck up a conversation with a married man, and upon mentioning I was divorced I noticed that his eyes became kind of glazed over as if he’d been hypnotized.
He began making overtures that hadn’t here-to-for existed. And making it clear that he wanted to see me again, and not just for a friendly chat over coffee. He moved a couple of steps closer, right into my personal space, put his hand on my arm and asked for my number. He thought that his untoward advances would excite me but on the contrary, suddenly I felt like I was the host of a bad deja-vu. I felt exposed and naked as if I was standing there, sporting nothing more than a pointy bra, garter belt and feather-topped mules.
It was clear that he saw me as the personification of the carnal creature from those late-night-re-runs and to say that I found this disturbing, not to mention confusing, would be an understatement, because in no way do I encouraged advances from married men; it’s kind of against my religion. I promptly took a couple of hasty steps backward and turned, only to come face-to-face with the guy’s wife who had obviously come to break up our little tete-a-tete.
Her eyes were far from glazed, but were pointed and menacing as if she were literally trying to bore a hole through my skull. I was glad I had pried myself out from under his sticky gaze and even though I managed to avoid him for the remainder of the evening I was shaken, not stirred.
It’s been quite some time since I was kissed by anyone other than my dogs. But as far from satisfying as a slobbery lick on the face is, the thought of doing the horizontal mambo with a man who has previously pledged his lips to another woman is even less so.
Part of me wishes I could have thrown my morals and good sense to the wind that evening and given this guy my number (it’s almost like my good sense and my libido are red states and blue states, duking it out and getting nowhere) but in the end as hot and bothered as I might be on a daily basis and as much as I long to be lip-locked with someone new, a kitten-with-a-whip I am not.