by Aaron Traister, REDBOOK
I'm writing this from vacation. I'm in a hotel with limited access to the internet. I can't figure out the channels on the TV. And I haven't read the paper since I left Philly. And yet, I still know that the Kindergarten Cop has a love child. Every screen I pass has a picture of Arnold or Maria on it, and my phone has told me more than once about the Pumping Iron star's pumping infidelity. Just like all the other recent cheating scandals-Tiger, Jesse James, Spitzer, McGreevey-this latest one is inescapable, impossible to ignore.
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What irks me is that when these kinds of stories dominate the media, they have a negative impact on how everyone else views marriage and monogamy. It's like A Clockwork Orange: After 24 hours of Arnold exposure, I wouldn't blame Karel if she asked if I had any other children I needed to tell her about.
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But these scandals don't tell the whole story or accurately represent the failings of most marriages. These are tales of disturbingly wealthy celebrities and politicians who, despite what some tabloids say, are nothing like us. I firmly believe that the majority of normal, non-famous guys I know are faithful to their significant others. I, for one, am approaching 10 years of marriage, and despite what the media has led me to believe during moments like this, it's been relatively easy-and a great deal of fun-to remain faithful. Which is why I'm reminding myself this week that no matter how insistently the talking heads on TV ask me to relate to, or identify with, the players involved in the scandal du jour, there is very little that a muscle-bound, fake-alien-killing, ex-governor of California and I have in common.
If Karel asks, I have no surprise kids.
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Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.