How I Planned A Ménage À Trois

The question on my husband’s birthday is always: What do you get for the man who has nothing? My husband isn’t a shopper; he buys food and, lately, diapers. He recently declared that he has enough pants to last the rest of his life. When I asked about his intentions regarding a drawer containing dozens of stray socks, he said his heirs would sort it out.

For his 40th birthday, I had my eye on a vintage watch. It would complement his tattered sweaters and declare to the world that he is, in fact, employed. But when I mention this to him, he balks. He says that what he really wants isn’t a good, but a service: a threesome with me and another woman.

This isn’t exactly surprising. He’d voiced the fantasy before. So had practically every guy I’d ever dated. But this time I say yes. Maybe it’s the moral weight of the big birthday and the fact that he never asks for anything. Maybe I’m daunted by the price tag on a stainless-steel Rolex. Maybe, as a journalist, I can’t resist a deadline, or I pity him heading into middle age consigned to sleeping with the same woman (me) for the rest of his life. And maybe, just maybe, it’s because I fancy the idea myself.

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