Friday, December 14, 2007

Hey W...WTF???

I was web surfing today, and happened to stumble across something really odd. I swear, I'm not trying to pick on George W. Bush, but I do occaisionally look at, simply because some of W.'s, well, "Dubya-isms" are hilarious. As a former English major, the fact that the leader of our country has such abysmal grammar and speaking skills blows my mind. And yes, I love word games and puzzles.

Anyway, I clicked on the "Fresh Dubya" link, and the first quote led me to the "Repeat Offender" section, which list many of the words, phrases, and verbal blunders that routinely make appearances in W's speeches.

The one that I happened upon was W's repeated use of the phrase "married well". The site lists 75 examples of W using this phrase in speeches, dating from March of 2001 to December 6th, 2007.

If you look through the list of examples, it's really mystifying. It's obvious that W intends the phrase as a compliment, usually to a man. Only once does he apply it to a woman (Elizabeth Dole), but then adds that Bob Dole got the better deal, and he, of course, also married well.

My understanding of the phrase "married well" is that a person married into a family of elevated social connections, prestige, and wealth. The only definition I could find online confirmed that: "in a manner affording benefit or advantage; 'she married well'".

Personally, I've always thought that people who place such importance on social prestige and position as a determining factor in choosing a spouse are more likely to marry the "correct" person and just have an affair with people that they are attracted to. I think that's why there is such a long-standing tradition of marital infidelity amoung politicians, especially those from the old "blue blood" families (Kennedy). After all, if your primary concern is that your spouse enhance your social connections and prestige, then love, or even attraction, are not going to be your primary concerns.

So is Bush complimenting these men on marrying into families of high social standing? On marrying the "correct" type of woman? On marrying, in essence, Stepford Wives? I can't really come up with a scenario in which the phrase "you married well" doesn't make my skin crawl. Your thoughts?


Strawberry Muffin said...

Sounds like "married well" is a term that should be discarded to the dustbin of history, along with other Silly Ideas About Life the Stupid Victorians Had.

InnerKeening said...

I've heard the "married well" in reference to ugly guys marrying super models, as a slap on the looks/brains of the guy.