Noodle Stew

The “dear Abbey”-style question isn’t particularly inspiring, by me, but I figured I would point out what is possible the best excerpt on pregnant women ever written!

Firstly I, of all people, understand cheapness. Through how many dinners did I, as a young and hungry writer, suffer the agonies of the damned as I contemplated the havoc the bill would wreak upon my minuscule bank account?

On those dinners went into the night: “Ha ha ha, let’s all go to the oyster bar after this, I hear the Malpeques are at their peak this time of year.” Clink. “Ha ha ha, waiter, ha ha ha, another bottle of Château d’Yquem – it’s absolutely delightful with the foie gras.”

All while I was sitting with bowels churning, calculating how many days I’d have to live on ramen noodles to be able to afford this extravagance.

So I certainly understand why some of your colleagues might have wanted to hit the noodle joint. Especially if yours is one of those offices where it feels like you’re always having to shell out for something: lunches, dinners, presents, flowers, worthy causes (in some offices, it truly never seems to stop.)

But surely, if a woman is both pregnant and the birthday girl, she is entitled to be treated like a goddess, a queen bee – at least for that day.

In the first place, pregnant women occupy a lofty moral status in our society – or at least they should. The future of humanity is curled up in their wombs. They should be treated with reverence, given the best morsels at feasts and the best seats on the subway. Their jobs should be held for them, and their most irrational whims should be honoured without question.

But if a woman is both pregnant and the birthday girl? Fuhgedaboudit. She floats high above ordinary mortals. She should be fussed over, taken to spas, given manicures and pedicures, and showered with presents and compliments. Her every caprice should be law to everyone in the vicinity. Throughout the course of the day, her money should be worthless, and if she even reaches for her wallet, she should be roundly denounced and pooh-poohed.

Ladies, am I wrong?

All of which is my way of saying I not only understand but endorse your crabbiness vis-à-vis your colleagues. Frankly, I think you were entitled to vent a little spleen.



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