Take dinner parties. There comes a moment, and that question: “Why don’t you have a partner?”
It is usually asked by one of a couple, with always a swivel of the eye to his or her other half, so really two people are asking this question.
And I struggle to answer: “I have never found the right person … I am a sad and sorry manchild … I am incapable of love… I am a deviant, and prefer giraffes.”
I could use these responses, it occurs to me, with little alteration.
But however horrid this condition may be for men, it’s apparently downright unspeakable for women:
A few years back, in an age of Bridget Jones-type heroines, the novelist Carol Clewlow wondered about a female reader of her own generation, a woman who had long decided not to twin her destiny with another’s. She wrote a novel about this single state. About spinsters.
She called it Spinsta.
She delivered Spinsta to her agent, who was delighted, as were her publishers. A campaign was initiated. Various columnists and celebrities were to be asked to consider and celebrate this word, but then another word came back from the booksellers.
That word was “no”. They would not stock and no one would pick up a book with such an ugly word as its title. The novel was retitled Not Married, Not Bothered.
At least it wasn’t Fifty Heights of Giraffe.
(Via this @syaffolee tweet.)