“Did you have an account at Ashley Madison?” My wife thundered.
“Yes….and no,” was my meek reply.
“Yes? Or No? Can you be a little specific?”
“Rekha, it doesn’t matter. You know that I love you.”
“That you better do. But, after I found your name on the Ashley Madison customer’s list, I am not so sure.”
“Rekha, I do. Promise.”
At this point, I wanted to come out like a real man and tell my wife that 37 million married men who had an account on Ashley Madison, so they could cheat on their wives couldn’t be wrong. There must have been a reason for so many men wanting to cheat. Shouldn’t the wives introspect just that little bit? Just peak into their hearts and see when they last allowed their husbands in.
“So, did you find any woman there?” My wife punctured my thought bubble.
“Hmm…didn’t you read?” I asked surprised.
“They had one registered woman for every seven men registered. So very few men got connected.”
“That’s a bad ratio – if you were fairer and taller, you may have beaten those odds on Gurgaon roads.”
At this point, I wanted to ask my wife if I was “so short and so dark”, how did she end up marrying me. I stopped short because that would have rekindled old wounds. The next moment, I wanted to be honest with my wife and tell her that if it weren’t for her I wouldn’t have registered at Ashely Madison. All that I had ever wanted was that soft kiss on the cheeks (not the cheek you are thinking!), that affectionate tap on the head (again not the head you are thinking!) and that ride into the sunset (damn…not the ride you are thinking!). I just didn’t have the courage.
My wife broke my silence again. “So, every seventh man on Ashley Madison got laid?”
“No way. For every 2500 men sending messages, only one woman messaged back.”
“Seriously?” My wife was shocked. “Why?” She insisted on an answer.
“I really don’t know, Rekha.”
“So, how much did you waste on the bitch you never had?”
“I didn’t actually pay. I only registered because I wanted to see how it worked.”
“That’s like my boy.” My wife sounded very patronising.
I waited for the next reaction from her, but looked like the domestic Ashley Madison storm was over. I stared at my wife as she messaged her friends on Whatsapp that I was clean and goaded them to investigate their husbands.
She seemed happy. I wanted to tell my wife that she and her friends shouldn’t have bothered questioning because wanting to cheat in marriage was as old as the institution of marriage itself. Many before me have tried to cheat, many after me will try to cheat. Those who didn’t register on Ashley Madison were perhaps trying Tinder or Happn or OKCupid or Bumble.
I also wanted to tell my wife that all the women need to rethink their priorities in life. If at all anything, this Ashley Madison hack has shown us one thing – that women don’t seem to like extra-marital affairs. Even if someone promises to keep them a secret. Well, at least till they get hacked.
Note: If you know a man (a friend, relative, colleague) who once thought his life was short and he deserved an affair, please forgive him. Chances are, like me, he just sought some discreet pleasure while staying emotionally loyal to one partner. In short, he is just a sheep which wandered for a bit and got fleeced for nothing.