Manhattan Wedlock! Never-Married Women, Toxic Bachelors

Good Friends, Lousy Husbands

I asked that very question to my friend Andrea, 35, a journalist. “I’ll tell you why,” she said. “I’ve gone out with some of those guys—the ones who are short, fat and ugly—and it doesn’t make any difference. They’re just as unappreciative and self-centered as the good-looking ones.

“By the time you get to your mid-30’s and you’re not married, you think, why should I settle?” Andrea said. She said she’d just turned down a date with a beautifully eligible, recently divorced 41-year-old banker because his unmentionable was too small. “Index finger,” she sighed.

Then Anna beeped in. She’d just gotten money to make her first independent film and she was ecstatic. “This idea of women not being able to get married? It’s so small-minded, I can’t even deal with it. If you want to get these guys, you have to shut up. You have to sit there and shut up and agree with everything they say.”

Luckily, my friend Virginia, 35, called, and explained it all to me. Explained why terrific women are often alone, and not happy about it, but not exactly desperate about it, either. “Oh honey,” she cooed into the phone. She was in a good mood because she’d had sex the night before with a 24-year-old law student. “Everyone knows that men in New York make great friends and lousy husbands. In the South, where I come from, we have an expression: Better alone than badly accompanied.”


Candace Bushnell began Sex and the City as a column in The New York Observer in 1994; it subsequently became a book and a series on HBO. She is also the author of Four Blondes, Trading Up and Lipstick Jungle, which is being filmed as a pilot for NBC starring Brooke Shields. Ms. Bushnell is also the host of Sex, Success and Sensibility, a live weekly talk show on Sirius Satellite Radio. She lives in Manhattan with her husband, New York City Ballet principal dancer Charles Askegard.

Manhattan Wedlock! Never-Married Women, Toxic Bachelors