Me, the cheating spouse

Being the last to leave the office tonight gave me the chance to flip through the morning paper which I had missed. An article on Section 2 of The Star which talked about extra-marital affairs made me chuckle. The writer included real-life account of cheated spouses and laid out 10 points of tell-tale signs of the cheating husband.

The 10 points are reproduced here:

            1. He works late, attends meetings or goes for outstation/overseas assignments more often.

            2. He can’t part with his handphone. There are mysterious late night calls and unusually long conversations.

            3.There are changes in his spending habits such as unusual credit card bills.

            4. He suddenly takes effort in his appearance, dresses better or goes on a diet.

            5. His preference for food, music, clothes or grooming habits change.

            6. He spends a lot more time at the computer and is constantly checking for new messages.

            7. There are sudden changes in his daily routine and he’s defensive when questioned about his whereabouts.

            8. His behaviour changes: every little thing sparks off an argument as he’s more short-tempered because of the guilty feelings. 

            9. He’s unusually nice, buys her more gifts.

            10. He encourages her to have her own space, to spend more time with her own friends, or go for a holiday on her own.

            I must say that I display 8 or 9 of the characteristics above recently, and I am not ashamed of it. My lifestyle has change, and what is with a little fun. Point-for-point above I am:

            1. Always 'working late' and always travelling, rarely at home.  

            2. Always having my mobile by my side. I regularly receive mysterious telephone calls in the middle of the night which cannot disclose the contents of the call. The caller is usually a lady with a sensuous voice.

            3. Increasing credit card spending on foreign trips.

            4. Suddenly becoming very conscious of my dressing while travelling- donning jackets, expensive shirts, shoes and so on. I am not dieting though.

            5. No change for this point- food is food, always good; music is music, always loud.

            6. I'm always checking for email messages at the computer.

            7. I'm very defensive when questioned on my whereabouts. If I have no good answer to where I am, it's always a blogger meeting or a meeting with the MP.

            8. I feel very guilty, but cool most of the time.

            9. Because I feel guilty, I try to buy more presents for my spouse to quash my guilt.

            10. I do not encourage my spouse to go on holiday trips on her own though. Since she is so pretty and there are other guys out there...
              The reality of things
              Being a regional financial head of a business unit of a multinational corporation demands a demanding lifestyle. No, the above 10 points is not about women but about the corporate responsibility I shoulder.  Lately this burden is heavier due to the worsening economic situation here. Doing business in this region is tough, what more if it's in this country. My customers in Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand tell me that Malaysia transport costs are high and it's cheaper to ship in similar goods from competitors in Vietnam or China.

              I tell unforgiving customers that trucking and transport costs in Malaysia went up by 35%-45% due to the incredible 40% fuel hike in early June 2008; and if this reason does not suffice, being a multinational corporation, I am able to ship-in lower priced but similar products from my company's plant in China to appease customers. My company as a whole is thus able to sustain profitable growth. But as time goes by, production volume in its Malaysian plant decreases, while production at the China plant increases. When volume decreases, revenue proportionately falls, and it becomes harder and harder to meet fixed business costs such as salaries, operating expenses and leases. Eventually the top guns in the US will want me to justify the existence of their Malaysian plant.

              Rising costs
              To add salt to the wound electricity tariffs increased by 26% for commercial and industrial zones almost the same time as the petrol price hike. Don't forget, an 8% and 12% electricity hike for the respective residence and commercial areas happened in June 2006 which was not too far off. Any accounts clerk ( no need accountants) can tell that profit margins will slip against higher production costs and lower demand; but the Government and Government-related fuckers say that the fuel and electricity hike has punitive impact on Malaysia's competitiveness. Denial does no good- in the end, doing business is not viable in Malaysia, hence the flight of FDIs from the country.
              Malaysia's inflation rate hits 8.5% in August 2008, a 26-year high, flaming citizens' expectations of worse times ahead. Government and central bank statements does little to sooth the labor force's fears of higher future inflation- thus employees demand for more salary in their current jobs... and even more in their next career jump. Because of the workforce's action of demanding higher salary, the cost of doing business becomes even higher- the employer pays higher salaries, more EPF, insurance and other personnel-related benefits but for the same efficiency and productivity levels. On top of this some top guy in New York or any part of the world gets worried about his investment in Malaysia because his/ her financial reports has got Malaysia labelled as 'politically unstable' for months.

              Honest spouses
              I work late, because being in this country demands so. I worry about my job, I worry about the economy.  To close this posting, I would like to say that this story in The Star is entertaining and socially fulfilling tabloid-reading needs but those 10 points label the hardworking but faithful spouse unfairly. The article is imbalanced with points squeezed through a pinhole in the sense it does little to mitigate the  over-worked honest spouse who will be unfairly categorized.

              I am overworked, but a least I want to be labelled as what I deserve to be.  To all honest married people, we are what we are, God Bless.


              1. I'm sure your wife will be glad to know what you've been doing...but isn't she the busy one? hehehe

              2. Hey V,

                If all other excuses fail, having a blogger meeting always does the trick.

                Until you end up in KDC, the ultimate excuse, of course.


              3. Kell- gulp. I really did not noticed she was that busy. Thanks for picking that up.

              4. OBE, gulp again. If I ever landed in KDC and got out, the next election I'll be on the soapbox and my posters will read 'Membela nasib rakyat'.

                A well-thought career chang(ed).