Here’s how you can tell:
1. Have you noticed changes in his appearance lately? Are there spots of anti-fouling paint on his sneakers? Does his T-shirt smell of diesel fuel? Is there waterproof grease on his jeans? How about varnish in his hair? Hmmm . . .
2. Is he practicing reef knots on his shoelaces and bowlines on his necktie? Hmmm . . .
3. Is the cunning so-and-so being too nice to you? Showering you with gifts, texting you every hour to say how much he loves you? Hmmm . . . Men don’t do that after the honeymoon. Not unless they have a secret love.
4. Is he using the internet non-stop, spending hours on Boatworld .com and MarineTrader.com? Is he chatting on the Cape Dory website? Check his browser history. Is he wiping it clean after every session? Hmmm . . .
5. Does he no longer seem attracted to women? Has he stopped buying Playboy and suddenly subscribed to Cruising World? Hmmm . . .
6 . How about your sex life? Is he losing interest? Does he have lots of nighttime headaches? Does he have a picture of a sleek 30-Square Meter or a curvaceous Westsail 32 in his wallet? Hmmm . . .
7. Is he extra grumpy around the house? Does he deliberately start fights so he can storm out of the house? Hmmm . . . You know where he’s going, don’t you? Straight down to the marina to lust over a 30-year-old Catalina 30 tall rig going for $17,500 with a low-hours diesel engine.
But fear not, madam. Remain calm. Tell him of your suspicions and be prepared for him to deny them. Also be prepared to deal with the consequences if he won’t come clean. Divorce is inevitable because men don’t change, especially the ones who cheat and run away with flighty boats. But divorce needn’t last forever. He’ll probably come crawling back and plead to be forgiven as soon as he receives the first bill from the boatyard. Then you, madam, will be in the pound seats.
Today’s ThoughtHow do you know love is gone? If you said that you would be there at seven and you get there by nine, and he or she has not called the police — it’s gone.
— Marlene Dietrich, ABC, Doubleday 1962
TailpieceThe works manager phoned the railroad station.
“Are you the passenger section?” he asked.
“No, honey,” purred a female voice, “I’m the goods.”
(Drop by every Monday, Wednesday, Friday for a new Mainly about Boats column.)