Tuesday, 15 July 2008
09:18:48 AM (GMT)
Because I created King--a popular men's magazine full of beautiful, scantily clad
women with bodies that could make guys do unspeakable things--many people think my
life is filled with drunken one-night stands, that I wake up in a different hotel
room each day next to sex-fueled, celebrity-chasing video vixens. This is so far
from the truth. I'm a devoted husband of seven years, happily married to the woman
of my dreams.
The wandering eye that all of us men are born with loses focus when a love supreme
fills the soul cavity. I judge beauty and sexiness for a living, and it's an easy
job--if it looks good, it goes in the magazine. To judge your life partner, someone
to raise kids with, to grow old with, to share your vulnerabilities with, that takes
a lot more than a lustful glance. I met Tinika in high school when I was a junior
she was a sophomore, and though she is beautiful, what has always attracted me to
most is her drive. No matter how big or small the event or project, she gets it done
and gets it done now. I just copy her. She got her driver's license the moment she
could. I was a year older--I couldn't have her driving before me!--so I finally went
and got mine. Same thing happens now around tax time--my W-2s sit and collect dust
until I hear how much she's getting back in her refund, and then I call my
accountant. She motivates my lazy ass, and I love her dearly for it. I pray that we
stay strong for as long as we both shall live...and a little past that would be hot
too. --Datwon Thomas, 33, in love for 16 years
I crave The Look. The one my wife still shoots me after many years--a little coy, a
little cocky, a little innocent, a little sophisticated, always subtle. It says: I
am a grown woman. I am beautiful. Lots of men could be looking at me right this
minute. And I'm looking at you. I remember being at a swanky press party one evening
in Manhattan, trying to find her across a roomful of celebrities. Then, as if a lamp
lit up from within her, Margaret appeared--tall, fresh and gorgeously turned out.
Her eyes found mine, and she beamed me The Look. Everyone else suddenly vanished. It
was so delicious I damn near passed out.
I am totally, willingly, gloriously hooked on my wife--as she is on me, I admit. But
it wasn't always like this. Before our wedding in 2001, we'd already been together
for a good 10 years. All the while, even though she's sexy, smart, talented, flirty
and feminine--in a word, dangerous--I engaged in various forms of emotional
resistance, always keeping something to myself--in a word, scared. But I was no
match for The Look, so I finally did it: I leaped off the cliff with her. Marriage
not only worked out, but actually intensified our relationship. Nearly four years
ago Margaret was diagnosed with ovarian cancer (she's now doing OK). Since then I've
done some looking of my own, at the hand I've been dealt: four aces and a wild card.
That's the best anyone can ever hope for. --Jamie Katz, 57, in love for 17 years
When I first started dating my wife, Emily, I was amazed how easy she was. I don't
mean like that. I mean to talk to. We could discuss anything--Chinese food and
gangster movies, former relationships and family stuff, character flaws and personal
"Don't be insulted if I forget your birthday," I said once, early on. "I never
"OK," she replied. "I'll make it a point to forget yours, too."
Even when we disagreed, there was never any tetchiness, it never got stilted. I
remember forcing a smile in past relationships after the person I was with had said
something that didn't gibe with my way of thinking. Or biting my tongue, lest I be
misunderstood. Usually it didn't seem worth getting deeper into it--with the
potential for hurt feelings or further confusion liable to spoil what was otherwise
a reasonably enjoyable evening. But that holding back itself was difficult. Faking
it, even just in the little ways most of us do most of the time, takes effort, and
I'm tired at the end of the day. The rest of life is hard enough as it is--with poor
cellular connections and radioactive seafood and the war and whatnot--without having
to tiptoe around the conversational pitfalls that can land a person in the dark,
feeling lonely and alien, even while you're sitting right across from someone at a
table in a restaurant. Or worse, lying next to her in bed.
I figure the best chance for a good night's sleep comes by ending the day as
comfortably as you can. With nothing on your chest, no stress you're keeping secret.
I figure you'd better be lying down next to a person you can tell your weirdest
dreams, your darkest thoughts, your fruitiest feelings, your very worst fears. For
me, that's Emily. And that's what keeps me hooked. That, and she lets me touch her
boobs. --Dave Bry, 37, in love for nine years
"It's my wife's libido that keeps me hooked. I get dirty text messages, and she's
very affectionate in public. I love that she keeps the juices flowing, and I'm
pretty sure she always will." --Richard Arkels, 30, in love for four years
The fact that we'll never be together
Maura (I can't use her real name) is classy. I mean that in the old-fashioned way. I
have never seen her be disloyal, sling mud or lose her dignity. I have seen her
angry--she's not a saint--but even when she swears, it comes out as spicy
punctuation added at just the right moment. She has the class of those women from
the past, the ones who understood men and instinctively knew how to handle one
without resorting to petulance. It was the trait that stood out above all the
others, the one that I have never stopped marveling over. Too bad for me she
was--and is--married. Happily.
We met through work, and I developed a mad crush that has, over the years, mellowed
into love. Declaring my feelings would not only be futile but would create so much
awkwardness, I might lose a friend. My reluctance, and her innate modesty, means, I
think, that she has no inkling of my feelings. I have pushed my love for her into a
small, safe spot in my heart that I visit occasionally when I feel the need for that
same pleasant sensation I felt when we first met.
I am not bitter or sad or lonely. I do not pine. I am in love with another woman
now--I have a life to live, and it is possible to love two people at the same time.
My feelings have never diminished, but dwelling on all the good reasons why we can
never be together is pointless. Mostly I feel lucky to have such a friend.
In fact, even if she were to be suddenly single, and my current love were to leave
me, I don't think I'd make a move. I wouldn't want to risk our friendship, for one
thing, but I also wouldn't want to expose my feelings to the elements of a life
truly lived together. We have never (at least not in the way lovers do) shared
tragedy, or dirty dishes in the sink, or worry over money, or the petty annoyances
of daily life. And so my love for her remains the sweetest I have ever known.
--Anonymous, 41, in (unrequited) love for 11 years
My wife is strikingly beautiful. She's ninety-ninth percentile beautiful. Am I a
totally objective judge? No, but here are just a few things that take my breath
Her lips: I could write a book on them.
Her waist: precious.
Her breasts: fantastic.
Her calves: I want to massage them all day.
Her hair: Chestnut-color and glorious, widow's peak included.
But if you asked me what I couldn't live without, what I need above all else, what
I've worshipped since the very first day we met, I would tell you with a smile: her
Round and sensual, those hips are what transform my wife from simply beautiful to
incredibly sexy. They take a hard turn from her waist and then softly curve down to
her thighs, a perfect combination of forcefulness and femininity. My eyes, hands
(and oftentimes lips) find them at all the obvious moments--when dancing, kissing
hello and goodbye, in bed--but also sneak there when we pass each other in the
hallway, cook together, brush our teeth side by side. While she's working at her
desk, I will get down on my knees, place my head in her lap and wrap my arms around
them without provocation. Earlier this year she gave birth to our first child and
now spends a lot of time talking about getting back to her pre-baby body (as I type
this she's next to me doing squats). I wish I could convince her that though I'll
love her forever no matter what shape she's in, having these extra-voluptuous hips
to grab onto makes life together all the sweeter. --Will Robinson, 29, in love for
More guys dish on their gals
"I wake up first every morning, and when I get out of bed my girlfriend always does
this intake of breath in her sleep. That just kills me. I have no idea why that
reverse sigh makes me want to be with her forever, but it does." --Danny Isquith,
28, in love for three years
"My girlfriend and I don't have to talk. I mean, we do, a lot, and we argue
sometimes, but we are so connected, it's not necessary to say anything. I have
friends I've known for years, and it feels awkward if there's silence with them, but
with her, it's the most natural thing ever." --Christian Linsey, 26, in love for
"Oh man, I love some good food, and Lori can cook! She cooks anything. Spanish,
Cajun, Ethiopian, whatever inspires her. She pulls ideas from cookbooks but rarely
follows a recipe. She dreams about food and is great with flavors. Every night Lori
makes us a wonderful dinner, and I feel blessed." --Manuel Malia, 37, in love for 16