Whenever I read in the news about some politician or celebrity having an affair, it makes me think of my own marriage and the sacredness with which I hold my vow of fidelity to my wife. Even after 20 years of marriage, I can look in the mirror and be proud of the fact I've never had an affair with another woman. I guess you could call me a poster boy of constancy.
Of course, I would be lying if I said I've never been tempted over the years. In fact, just last week at a convention I sat next to a lady who tickled my fancy quite a bit and on the principle of full disclosure I confess I was feeling a little frisky after a day of stimulating talk about the actuarial sciences, of which I count myself a proud practitioner.
I could have sat at the opposite end of the bar from her, but instead I sat myself down right next to her and introduced myself by saying, "I could tell you my real name but it might come back to bite me later!" Heh-heh! Kind of a funny line among us actuaries. But you could tell she was a real pro, a no-nonsense kind of gal (which I like!), and although she smiled, she didn't seem to be in the same kind of feisty mood I was in and she left just a minute or two later.
Which is probably a good thing, because, to be perfectly honest with you, despite my sterling track record, I sometimes wonder whether I have the inner strength to resist the allure of a woman who's bent on seducing a man. I like to think I have the strength, but I can't recall ever having been tested, if you know what I mean, although about a year ago I had a meeting with a woman and in the first five minutes I entertained myself with the idea that she found me attractive. Maybe she was just being polite because her company was considering doing business with ours, but she seemed interested in what I had to say and even leaned across the table when I showed her our risk-reduction model for the kind of business her company did.
To this day I wonder if I could have resisted her had she actually unleashed on me her charms, which I think were considerable. Luckily, she did no such thing, and her interest in what I had to say seemed to start and stop with our company's risk-reduction model. But the question occupies me. I mean, is it just luck that I've been faithful all these years or is it because of my core values? Am I at root a faithful husband or have I just never been put to the test?
This is an important question, because next week I'm going to Kansas City for a conference and you know how that song goes, "They got a crazy way of lovin' there, and I'm gonna get me some. . . Kansas City, here I come!"
I'm certainly not hoping to have an affair. But after 20 years, the cards could come up in favor of a chance encounter, a moment when a lady is feeling a bit lonely, maybe smarting from a recent divorce or something, and along comes just the man she's looking for, or at least a man that kind of fits the bill, or just fills a need, or reminds her of her ex-husband in their better days or maybe her old high school boyfriend or a college professor who once lit a fire under her, or is at least no worse than her ex-husband. Or maybe she's still married and wants to stick it to her husband by flirting with the man sitting next to her at the bar. I'm just saying that that man could be me. I'm an actuary. I know about calculating odds. It's been 20 years. That's 20 years of going to conventions, having meetings-can I possibly go another 20 years without at least one moment arising when all of the stars are aligned?
Not that I want something to happen. I'm proud of my track record. But you never know.