More particularly, those who'd rather shack up than marry:
“I went through a phase of just calling him Eric, even to people who didn’t know who that was,” said the master wordsmith Ann Kjellberg, 50, editor of the journal Little Star and the literary executor of the poet Joseph Brodsky. Eric Zerof spent 15 years as her live-in not-spouse and is the father of Ms. Kjellberg’s child. “I kept thinking, ‘This should not be this hard!’ I was very unhappy about the situation. I could never find a word I liked.”
One might imagine we would be less tongue-tied. The faux spouse is a pretty ho-hum cultural specimen for such a gaping verbal lacuna. But none of the word choices are good. Everyone agrees that partner sounds awful — too anodyne, empty, cold. Lover may be worse — too sexualized, graphic, one-dimensional. Boyfriend sounds too young. Significant other sounds too ’80s. Special friend or just friend (both favored by the 65-and-over crowd) are just too ridiculous.
Faced with such weak English-language options, Janna Cordeiro, 43, a nonprofit and public health consultant in San Francisco, settled on calling Sebastian Toomey, her mate of 23 years, “mi hombre” — my man. (Pronunciation: deep and forceful, with rolled r, as in a Western.) “My daughter goes to a Spanish-immersion school,” Ms. Cordeiro explained. “When she started kindergarten, I started asking the Spanish-speaking parents how to introduce Seb. Everybody kept saying, ‘mi esposo, mi esposo.’ I kept saying that was wrong and started saying, ‘mi hombre,’ and it stuck.”
Anne Tierney, 32, a bodyworker in West Palm Beach, Fla., went for “fusband,” which, she explains, is a catchall for “fake husband, future husband.” (Ms. Tierney’s fusband, Ozzy, calls Ms. Tierney “wifey.”) Technically the two are engaged, but Ms. Tierney said: “The word fiancé makes me cringe. What am I, in France?”
The engagement process, according to Ms. Tierney, was also a bit of a debacle: “I was sitting on the ground. Ozzy was standing up. Little Ozzy” — their baby, now a toddler — “was crying.” Big Ozzy gave Ms. Tierney a necklace. She said she thought, “Why is this guy giving me a necklace?” Then he gave her a diamond ring that, because they had not planned on marrying, she assumed was fake. (It wasn’t.) The two have not set a wedding date and probably never will. Ms. Tierney said: “If I ever get the urge, maybe I’ll drag him to a wedding shop and we’ll take a few pictures. If he could just come and stare at me lovingly, that would make me happy.”
There's more, if you can stomach it.
It does make one think... why the fuss by those in support of gay marriage (guarantee you'll find the commitless among them) when marriage in and of itself is seen to be such anathema?
I don't get it.
Unless one takes the angle that the trek to gay marriage is really just another weapon in the war against the Church, one to be discarded once wounds to the institution have been inflicted.
It's on the march.
H/T to Deacon Greg.