“Brangelina”

Now there’s a subject you never thought you’d see The Curmudgeon writing about, eh?

Well, you’re right: he has no intention of writing about it.

But someone else has, and in a winning way. Paul Rudnick is a frequent contributor to the New Yorker magazine and he can be a pretty funny guy. Last week he wrote a very funny piece about Brangelina, which you can read on the New Yorker web site here or below. (And as The Curmudgeon has suggested in the past, you really should check out the New Yorker.)

ASK DR. JELLOWITZ-KESSLER

 I, Susan Jellowitz-Kessler, am perhaps the world’s most noted and compassionate authority on marital relations. Thanks to the impending divorce of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, my in-box and my Web site have been overwhelmed with queries. In a selfless attempt to satisfy all those who are suffering, I am posting the most frequently asked questions, along with my expert and helpful responses.

 Q: With everything that’s going on between Brad and Angelina, does my own marriage have a prayer?

 A: Yes. Since you and your spouse are undoubtedly far less wealthy and less physically attractive than the Jolie-Pitts, your problems will never be anywhere near as upsetting or as interesting as theirs.

 Q: Should two movie stars ever marry each other?

 A: That’s an excellent point of interest, which I explored in my doctoral thesis, entitled “Excuse Me, He Has a Soulpatch and Highlighted Bangs, He Wears a Little Porkpie Hat, and He’s Been Married Once Already, Not Counting the Broken Engagement to Gwyneth Paltrow, What Did You Expect?” I concluded that, for celebrities, marriage should be considered neither a holy sacrament nor a legally binding contract but, rather, a hobby, like origami or running for President.

Q: A tabloid recently filled its front page with a photograph of Jennifer Aniston laughing. Do you think this was actually Jen’s response to the news about her former husband?

A: Never. Jennifer, from everything I’ve heard, is a kind and openhearted person who harbors no resentment toward her ex or toward the woman who broke up their marriage. Jennifer moved on with her life a long time ago, and has continued acting and also endorsing both a bottled-water brand and a line of skin-care products. I’m told that Jennifer has, as a healing gesture, just shipped a crate of these products to Angelina.

Q: It’s rumored that Brad has been undergoing a midlife crisis. Is such a phenomenon treatable?

A: It can be. Except in men.

Q: Would this be a good time for me to contact Brad, perhaps on Twitter, and suggest that we meet for coffee?

A: Of course. Brad is at an intensely vulnerable juncture, so he might be willing to drunkenly stumble into a Starbucks, take one look at you, and mumble, “Are you out of your mind?,” which would be a beginning, and most likely something you’ve heard before.

Q: If I happen to run into Angelina at, say, the United Nations or on the Academy Awards red carpet, what would be an appropriate and helpful greeting?

A: You might just say, “Hi there!,” in a cheerful manner, and then mime a teardrop rolling down your cheek, or use both hands to form the heart shape that Taylor Swift often uses during her concerts. You could also suggest a favorite tea blend or a machete.

Q: Is it ever possible to forgive infidelity?

A: Yes. Except in men.

 Q: Was the Jolie-Pitt marriage doomed owing to the onslaught of media attention and online scrutiny?

A: Perhaps. But, as the Kardashian family has proved, constant selfies, reality television, and the exposure of visible thongs beneath crocheted jumpsuits can also solidify a marriage. (Although instead of using the word “marriage,” Kim Kardashian prefers the phrases “limited series,” “branding opportunity,” and “this afternoon.”)

Q: Will Brad and Angelina ever get married again, perhaps to other movie stars?

A: It’s possible, especially if either of them hits a career lull or needs to promote a documentary. When a patient of mine recently experienced the premature cancellation of a network spinoff, I suggested, “Have you thought about dating Ben Affleck?”

Q: I feel bad for Brad and Angelina, and I wish them only the best. But I wonder: If such a gifted couple can’t make things work, is love possible for anyone?

A: Of course it is. The real explanation for the Jolie-Pitt split is that, unlike the rest of us married people, when they made love they were unable to shut their eyes and imagine either Brad Pitt or Angelina Jolie. 

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