STOCK PHOTOZ!!!!!!!!1!

Marie Claire has a little piece up at the moment called (titillatingly) “The Truth About Bachelor Parties” with the haunting lead, “The Hangover movies make stag night seem like a harmless (if insane) male ritual. But the reality is a woman’s worst nightmare.”

First of all, I like how they made it so topical. The Hangover is indeed a movie! Delightful!

The piece is an apparent expose of this new trend sweeping the bachelor party nation: fucking prostitutes. Or… maybe it’s always been a trend? (The article does claim to expose the truth, after all) It begins with the story of Adam (the first man, duh) and how he totally had sex with one such sex worker on one such eve of his wedding:

At first, Adam hesitated: How could he cheat on his fiancée — especially in front of all these people, some her family members? Still, he reasoned, “This would be my last chance to touch another woman ever again. Being drunk and rising to their taunts, I picked a statuesque blonde with fake breasts and took a trip across the street.” The sex, he says, was amazing — so much so that his fiancée didn’t enter his mind until he was walking back to the club. At that point, he panicked, wondering how people would react. “If they had greeted me with averted eyes, I would have been really nervous,” he says. “Instead, everyone burst into cheers, as if I’d walked in with a Nobel Prize.” Before ending the night, the men devised a plan to conceal Adam’s infidelity. “We agreed to overload the women with stories, except that one thing, so they’d assume they knew everything,” he says. The next day, the women grilled their guys, but no one caved. “Their solidarity and confidentiality amazes me to this day,” says Adam. “Her friends and family were there, and no one breathed a word.”

Man! Having sex with a prostitute on the night before your wedding is like winning a Nobel Prize? If you think that’s the best analogy this article can do, how about “getting a handjob from a stripper is like Zeus reaching down from Heaven“? Yeah? Cool, right? Fuck Mount Olympus!

While not all bachelor parties include sex, the combination of booze, male bravado, and strippers is a heady mix that moves some men to do things they’d never do otherwise. As Jack, 37, explains about a bachelor party he attended, “I assumed strippers would paw me, then I’d go home and have sex with my wife,” he says. “But after the stripper got me excited, she said, ‘For $100, I’ll finish you off.’ It was like Zeus reaching down from heaven. When a girl is literally unzipping your pants, men can’t say no. We’re not built that way.”

The article goes on to really up the scare-tactic ante by describing (wait for it) a sexual scavenger hunt, in which bachelors sought intercourse with an older woman, a bride-to-be, a stripper, etc with regards to a strikingly arbitrary point system. Setting aside the fact that this sexual scavenger hunt is almost certainly a ridiculous concept invented for purposes of making the article go viral from easily excerpted fear-mongering… decent people don’t actually behave this way. Which is to say, the kinds of people you want to marry.

From then, we get a little pop psychology insight into male behavior (“Do these guys feel guilty during or after the act? Not really, since to them, it’s not exactly cheating: The women are merely part of a rite of passage. It’s a strange ritual, but no more bizarre than a wedding itself”) and the whole thing wraps up by laying our heads to rest with the suggestion that maybe bachelor parties are so wild and frightening that they actually scare men into fidelity. “And he’s been faithful ever since,” the author concludes of one such subject. “You believe him, right?” RIGHT?!

So. Almost every insight into human behavior here is pretty hilarious. But the major point practically goes without saying:

This isn’t what happens at bachelor parties. This is what happens when you’re engaged to an asshole.

It’s very possible this kind of shit goes on, but people don’t cheat because the opportunity presents itself. They cheat because they are shitty people. In this sense, this article doesn’t speak to any truth about anything, be it bachelor parties, the male psyche, the human condition, things that rhyme with orange, whether you can domesticate a zebra, etc.

But! I am interested to know if you find this article unsettling? Do you have any horror stories? Has horrible behavior at a bachelor party lead to a strain on your relationship? Please tell me.

And in the meantime, thanks, Marie Claire!